One of the hottest trade targets this season is no longer a target. According to Bob Nightengale of USA Today, Cole Hamels and the Philadelphia Phillies have reached a six-year, $144 million extension agreement. He says the extension will be announced at a press conference to be held at noon ET today.
The Phillies and Hamels have been working on an extension for months now with both sides showing their
frustration at times. The Phillies seemed ready to give up and began listening to trade offers for Hamels. Hamels said he wanted to play for a west coast team. In the end though, the lefty will remain in Philadelphia through 2019.
Hamels is 11-4 this season with a 3.23 ERA. In his career, he has a 3.38 ERA. Hamels has only had two seasons in which his ERA was over 4.00. He is a three-time All-Star and still just 28 years old. The native Californian will be with the Phillies at least through his age 34 season.
Philadelphia was thought to be willing to sell off most of their team by the deadline. They are ten games under .500 and in last place in the National League East. It is unlikely they will make a run this season, but the team has committed themselves to Hamels going forward.
Numerous teams were interested in Hamels and could have benefitted from his presence on the mound. The Dodgers, the Diamondbacks, the Nationals, the Braves, and others were in a position to pick up another starter. Now, those teams and others will have to look elsewhere.
The exact details of the contact are not yet know. However, it seems like a safe bet that it will be a step contract increasing in value each year. Hamels is making $15 million already this year. The average yearly salary with the new contract will be $24 million. This deal will dwarf the one signed earlier this year by Matt Cain. Cain’s contract is the largest ever signed by a right-handed pitcher.
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