Trade talk surrounding Phillies ace Cole Hamels has been a talking point for the better part of two months. It came to a head last week when the Phillies placed Hamels on revocable waivers and the left-hander was claimed by the Chicago Cubs. Philadelphia had 48 hours to work out a trade with the Cubs or pull him back off waivers. No deal was reached and Hamels is still a Phillie.
But that doesn't mean a deal cannot or will not be struck over the winter. The Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo reports the Phillies are still demanding "four or five prospects" to part with Hamels but one team the Phillies have interest in possibly striking a deal is the Boston Red Sox.
Cafardo writes, "Don’t think in 30 years of covering baseball I’ve ever seen a team (the Phillies) spend so much time scouting another team (the Red Sox) and not pull the trigger on a deal. Even after the trade deadline, the Phillies have had a scout in Boston, St. Louis, and Anaheim watching Boston’s young players. The match would be Cole Hamels for young players, and it may very well heat up this offseason. Hamels, according to a source close to him, would be open to a deal with the Red Sox."
Hamels, 30, might be pitching as good as he has in any stretch of his career. On the season he is 6-6 with a 2.37 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP in 21 starts for the Phillies. In six June starts he went just 1-1 but put up a minuscule 1.13 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP. The wins started to come for Hamels in July going 3-1 with a 2.41 ERA and the same 1.07 WHIP in five starts.
The Phillies are right to ask for a massive haul for Hamels because he means that much to the team. He is not like Cliff Lee and approaching the twilight of his career while the Phillies sputter in mediocrity. Hamels is 30 years old in the prime of his career, under team control and it is not out of the question that Hamels will still be a force at the top of the Phillies rotation when they (hopefully) turn the team around in a few years.
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