July 01, 2015
Pete Mackanin said something prior to Wednesday's game against the Brewers that you don't often hear a manager say, no matter how much of a foregone conclusion it seems to be at the time.
With the trade deadline now less than a month away, the Phillies interim manager told reporters it's "probable" that the team trades its best player, Cole Hamels, at some point in July.
Pete Mackanin said he has no inside info but believes it "probable" that Cole Hamels would be traded this month to help rebuild.— Jim Salisbury (@JSalisburyCSN) July 1, 2015
Hamels, 31, is 5-6 with a 3.22 ERA in 16 starts and has pitched extremely well considering the dire state of the Phillies overall. To say his talents are going to waste pitching for a team destined to finish last would be an understatement.
10 times this year Cole Hamels has thrown 7 IP and allowed 2 or fewer runs. 5 times he's lost or got a ND. My story: http://t.co/YnhYLU8OsB— Nick Suss (@nicksuss) July 1, 2015
Cole Hamels has tied Max Scherzer for most starts this season of 7+ IP and 2 or fewer runs allowed (10)— Paul Boyé (@paul_boye) July 1, 2015
He's likely Ruben Amaro's most valuable trade asset, as he's been relatively healthy throughout his career -- he's reached at least 190 innings pitched seven straight years -- and has a contract that, while pricey, is still quite team friendly.
Here's a look at his deal compared to what Scherzer got this offseason (via baseball-reference.com):
|2019||35||$20M team option OR|
$24M vesting* option OR
The Phillies have yet to find a team willing to give up the prospects they desire in exchange for the former World Series MVP. But if Mackanin says a trade is "probable," perhaps their asking price is going to come down. Or maybe they think a team will cave and give them what they ask for.
As the team continues its attempt to rebuild, there will likely be other big-name players -- like Jonathan Papelbon -- that get traded, but so far there have been only rumors.
Those rumors will only increase in volume in the coming weeks until they reach a crescendo on July 31.