Cole Hamels So Just Got Paid

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Good news and bad news for the Phillies, on this, the final day of Spring Training… which will be played in high-50s weather at Citizens Bank Park, where the new Bermuda Rivieragrass looks to have a slightly brighter green hue.

Matt Cain signed an extension with the Giants yesterday– five years, $112 million (in total, including this season, he’s under contract for six years, $127 million).

Cole Hamels is better.

Less than a year older, Hamels has fewer career innings pitched and a slightly higher ERA (3.39 for Hamels vs. 3.35 for Cain), but a significantly better strikeout-to-walk ratio (well over 3-to-1 vs. slightly over 2-to-1), more wins, and a better WHIP (walks + hits per inning pitched– 1.14 vs. 1.19). He’s also a left-hander who pitches in a smallish ballpark, unlike Cain, a righty, who plays in pitcher-friendly AT&T Park. 

Between the deal given to Cain – who, as you can see, is very comparable to Hamels – and the fact that the new Dodgers owners may have just given Magic Johnson a bottomless bucket of play money to spend on players just like the SoCal Hamels, the price for the Phillies’ number three (but perhaps most valuable) starter just went up. Way up.

Last week, Ruben Amaro, wearing his poker face, said that he didn’t think Hamels would earn Cliff Lee money. But, if Cain’s contract is any indication, Hamels is going to get more than Lee. And Cole’s teammates aren’t going to let him forget that the market has been set by Cain. As overheard by CSN producer Casey Feeney:

Screen Shot 2012-04-03 at 9.38.24 AM

Nice.

Meanwhile, on the complete opposite side of the Spectrum, Ryan Howard’s $125 million contract continues to prove to be almost a bargain (current injury notwithstanding).

The Reds signed Joey Votto to a 10-year, $225 million deal yesterday. Votto is younger, better and healthier than Howard, but he’s certainly not five years and $100 million better. And Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder, who signed contracts for a combined 19 years and (roughly) $465 million this offseason, are also not “twice as valuable” as The Big Piece. The Phillies' decision to lock up Howard (again, without being able to predict him tearing his Achilles to shreds) before the market for power-hitting first basemen ballooned, is proving to be a wise decision… or, at least not as crazy as we once thought it was.

Of course, not re-signing Hamels early… well, that may cost the Phillies…$140 million.

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26 Responses

  1. Ruben will lose me as a Phillies fan if he doesn’t sign Cole. He keeps low-balling him and running this team into the ground. Have fun with your old men hacking away at the plate, Ruben.

  2. Uhhh their numbers are ridiculously close. Hamels contract should be almost identical to the one Cain just signed. If he won’t agree to the same contract right now than it should alarm the Phillies that he’s just looking for the fattest deal & it might be time to trade him. Right now you could trade Hamels to a team that would fork over market value & get a huge return – example: Hamels to Yankees for Manny Banuelos (top pitching prospect they’d control for 6 ml seasons), Nick Swisher (a switch hitting bat to contribute this year in LF), Phil Hughes (who would be bounced from their rotation w/ Hamels in), and a low A Superstar like Dante Bichette Jr. Hamels to the Red Sox for Jacoby Ellsbury & Felix Doubront. Point is you can get a huge return for him now if you know he’s not going to sign. It’s time for the “Big Poker” to either get a deal done with Cole or move on and insure Hamels doesn’t walk at season’s end as that would be disastrous for this franchise.

  3. While Votto’s deal is crazy, he’s a much better player then Howard and signed it when he was younger I believe. Cincy isn’t a great destination for FA’s so it’s not a surprise that they have to overpay.
    As for Hamels, they should start at Cain’s deal and only move a little. The contract that Cain is going to sign is what Hamels should get….problem is, Hamels will likely want more now.
    Love to do a Hamels for Ellsbury, Boston probably wouldn’t though as they still have to sign Lester.

  4. Bill, Boston would absolutely do a Hamels for Ellsbury trade. It would probably be Hamels & Dom Brown for Ellsbury, Doubront (just a young arm who could potentially be a 5th starter like Kendrick), and a solid low A prospect or two. Ellsbury’s value has never been higher than it is now. He won’t come close to .321/.376/.552 32hr ever again. He’s more of a .305/.360/.460 12hr guy & that type of player never lands you an ace like Hamels. You don’t think Boston would sell high on Ellsbury to land an ace like Hamels & cockblock the Yankees?

  5. Baseball is getting ridiculous. 200 million for Joey (I proved I can hit like a year and a half) Votto??? Cain for 112 million?? Cincinnati and San Fran just ruined it for the rest of us!

  6. Hamels has two choices.. 1. Get the most $$ he can on the open market 2. take a little less to pitch in Philly.
    Ruben has to know by July if hes going for the $$. If he does, you have to trade him. Phils won a WS with Hamels, Myers, Blanton, and Moyer. THey can def win with Doc, Lee, Worley, and Blanton.

  7. Black Mama, sorry that I actually know a little bit about the game. You pick these things up if you tuned in prior to 2008. You’re probably the male equivalent of a “pink hat” (the soccer moms who wear pink phillies hats to the grocery store).

  8. By signing Hamels to a contract that be deserves, your going to lose a few other players and have to start “rebuilding”. I believe Vic and Pence contracts are coming up and they are going to want to get paid. To much money tied up in older players (Rollins, Utley, Howard).
    Kyle do you know who’s contracts are up and who’s contracts are coming up?
    Bob

  9. i would never sign hamels to a six or seven year deal….his back is a ticking time bomb and the team is going to implode because of age before hes half way thru the deal
    trade him for some prospects to shorten your rebuilding years when victornio jimmy utley howard lee chooch polanco halladay ect all start to go away….these guys are all going to either leave retire or have a big drop off in production within at most a three year window and theres going to have to be a lot of talent in the system to replace some of them

  10. I have to agree with the ghost, above. you resign hamels that long term, with lee already locked up, and howard due about another trillion on his contract, can we afford to pay that much for another starter? not saying he isnt a huge piece to our future, but what are we going to do have cole and cliff pitching and then have dom brown, mayberry, michael martinez and the like playing behind them. Likeable guys with upside, but still question marks. IDK who to choose? more pop and winning/losing 7-6 or more pitching and winning/losing 3-2? tough call. But one thing is clear, RAJ needs to learn to be a real GM in the majors, not some rich kid with a bottomless check book. He needs to learn to that the biggest move isnt always the best move, and that the BEST move doesnt always have to be the biggest(most expensive). I hope ed wade and the scouts can get some good prospects back in the farm system, cause RAJ, if unchanged is going to run the team into the groud. I love the big trades, ROY, CLIFF, ROYO etc, but pretty soon you are going to spend all the money the owners are willing to fork out….

  11. If I’m trading Cole then I’m hitting up Toronto first. Hamels and Brown for Lawrie, D’arnaud and Gose.

  12. I imagine the Phillies will offer Hamels what Cain was offered. There are only a few teams that could outbid (it would be by a small percentage). If he leaves for LA or NY, it would be because of superior lifestyle, not money.

  13. Trade Cole Hamels……that championship team is disappearing before our eyes. How can anyone ever think of trading Cole Hamels?

  14. If the Phillies want to get something for Hamels, they will have to trade him this year….which means basically giving up on this year. Halladay and Lee won’t be able to carry the team and we can only hope the offense can produce. Forget about Utley and Howard….there offense won’t be enough to contribute.
    Might have to start facing it…..the rebuild is coming quickly. Thank God Freddie Galvis is looking good.
    Bob

  15. @Bill
    The Great Beez Nutz posted that a few weeks ago (Hamels for Ellsbury). Get off my tip.
    I’d also like to see what it would take to get Ryan Braun here for Hamels.
    Love,
    Beez Nutz

  16. What is going on here with these lopsided video game esque trades. Come on fellas. The Red Sox aren’t going to trade ellsbury for Hamels and the Yankees aren’t going to trade Banuelous either. Hamels at the deadline would be a rental player. Its not just about the phillies side of the deal that works. Please don’t quit your day job

  17. @Freddy
    its widely believed that the sox arent going to want to extend or resign Ellburry (atleast my friends who are sox fans tell me). If they could work out an extension (sox) before the trade, it would make a ton of sense.
    1. They have more than enough offense
    2. they need pitching

  18. And Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder, … , are also not “twice as valuable” as The Big Piece.
    This may be true in the regular season, but not the post season 🙁

  19. Dude you have to look at the Votto/Howard comparison at the same point in their careers. Votto is certainly better defensively but Howards power numbers makes an absolute mockery of any comparison.
    4 years prior to signing his contract. Howard had 198 HR and 572 RBI. Votto 115 HR and 384 RBI. Ryan Howard is a bargain.

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