It’s been well publicized about his contract being up at the end of the year. Philadelphia has one of the highest payrolls in Major League baseball. Giving Hamels a deal near or exceeding money to what Roy Halladay, and Cliff Lee are making seems logical, because he pitches just as well as they do, but it just might not be in the best interest of the team to do so. Even though the home-grown Hamels deserves it.
The everyday talent in Philadelphia has eroded – Ryan Howard, Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley, and Placido Polanco are shells of their former selves. The lack of production and health from these players might force GM Ruben Amaro’s hand to break up the awesome pitching staff that has assembled in Philly.
With Cole and Shane Victorino both hitting the free agent market this off-season, the time to make the hard decision is now.
This team has no *bankable* young talent. Dominic Brown was supposed to be that guy, but he is still finding himself in Triple-A. Still, you need more than one guy to fill the holes on this roster even if he was ready.
The past three trade deadlines Philadelphia has traded for Cliff Lee, Roy Oswalt, and Hunter Pence. Lee was traded to Seattle at the end of the 2009 season for minor league players who have done absolutely nothing up to this point. Before eventually resigning with the Phils in 2011. Oswalt isn’t currently pitching in the majors. Pence has been one of a few bright spots this season, though he can be streaky. With all of those deals being made, the farm system was completely depleted with the exception of Dominic Brown.
I wonder what kind of haul could be made if the Phillies dealt Halladay, Lee, and/or Hamels? Or maybe just Halladay, and Lee? Then resign Hamels at the end of the year to be the staff ace with Worley, and Kendrick filling two of the remaining 4 spots for 2013 and beyond. By no means am I saying Worley and Kendrick are the caliber of Hamels, but both have shown they are capable pitchers.
I don’t know what to expect from Howard once he returns from injury. Hopefully he is able to approach 30 jacks and 100 RBI the next couple seasons. Offensively other than Howard, the only pieces the Phils should consider moving forward with are Pence, Victorino, and Ruiz. I wouldn’t mind Mayberry either if he is in a 4th outfielder/back-up 1B role, but Rollins, Utley, Pierre, Galvis, and Polanco are not long-term solutions. They shouldn’t even be next year solutions.
So the question is this: Would Philly consider trading aces to fill the everyday holes at 2B, SS, 3B, and LF? Trades that could potentially lay the foundation for a new run of success.
I guess we’ll find out exactly what GM Ruben Amaro Jr. is really made of sooner rather than later. I would hate to see Halladay, Lee, or Hamels dealt, but if Ruben got core pieces and prospects to fuel this team as Howard, Utley, and Rollins did a couple years ago, I would have a hard time disagreeing with the move.