The aboriginal eight weeks of the baseball division acquire connected to appearance the barter bazaar for Phillies ace Cole Hamels.
Some developments about the majors – such as injuries to the Cardinals’ and Dodgers’ starting rotations – ability angle to account the Phillies aback barter discussions calefaction up. Others – such as the struggles of the Athletics and Brewers – may accommodate alienated teams alternative, shorter-term options than the Phillies’ top barter chip.
Also still in comedy is the looming free-agency class, ample with frontline starting pitchers including Johnny Cueto, David Price, and Jordan Zimmermann. A club in the barter bazaar for a starting abode this summer could ultimately adjudge to angle pat and abode its charge in chargeless agency.
With Sunday appearance absolutely two months until the July 31 barter deadline, it’s a applicable time to booty banal of the abeyant bazaar for Hamels while attractive at the accepted situations of a few abeyant suitors.
The Adam Wainwright-less Cardinals accomplish the best faculty in some estimations, abnormally accustomed their cachet as baseball’s best aggregation through the season’s aboriginal two months. They could go for it all and attack to access Hamels to banderole their postseason circling and again appear aback aing division with Wainwright and Hamels aloft their starting five.
While their bush arrangement isn’t as even as those of the Red Sox, Dodgers, or Cubs, the Cards should still acquire the pieces to get a accord done. Although they are not acceptable to allotment with Carlos Martinez, who is already accidental in the above leagues, or the lefthanded Marco Gonzales, Alex Reyes is addition arresting adolescent arm the Phillies could seek in barter discussions.
Reyes, a righthanded ability pitcher, is alone 20 years old with aloof eight starts of acquaintance in high-A ball, but he entered the division as the Cardinals’ No. 2 anticipation abaft Gonzales, according to Baseball America. Their best position-player anticipation is Stephen Piscotty, a 24-year-old outfielder who hits added for boilerplate than ability and is in amateur A.
It’s been a ages back Wainwright tore his larboard Achilles tendon, and the Cardinals still entered the weekend 51/2 and 6 amateur advanced of the Cubs and Pirates, respectively. But back accident Wainwright they acquire acclimated three pitchers – Malvern Prep alum Tim Cooney (one start), Tyler Lyons (three starts), and Jaime Garcia (two starts) – to bung their fifth circling spot.
Their bullpen, while boasting the NL’s best ERA (2.20 activity into Friday), has logged the fourth-most innings in the majors this month. Despite their success, the Cards could attending for a circling advancement who can eat added innings and bigger bottle their ‘pen, whether it’s Hamels or addition abroad on the July market.
Despite accident two of their top four starters, Hyun-Jin Ryu and Brandon McCarthy, to season-ending injuries, the Dodgers entered the weekend a half-game advanced of the Giants in the NL West. Their circling abaft Clayton Kershaw and Zack Greinke appearance Mike Bolsinger, Carlos Frias, and Brett Anderson.
The Dodgers acquire the assets to accomplish a run at Hamels or added pitchers – conceivably Cueto, the Reds ace, or his rotation-mate Mike Leake; Oakland’s Scott Kazmir; Milwaukee’s Kyle Lohse or Matt Garza; or the Phillies’ Aaron Harang – who are speculated to be on the barter market. All break are the Dodgers are afraid to allotment with any of their three best adolescent players – centerfielder Joc Pederson, ambush Corey Seager, and lefthander Julio Urias – but their acreage arrangement is deep.
A abeyant accord could depend on how the Phillies appearance Los Angeles’ added prospects, and whether the Dodgers could put calm a amalgamation to amuse the Phillies’ allurement price.
Ever back the winter, the Red Sox acquire been the most-speculated suitor for Hamels. They abridgement an ace – their circling entered this weekend with a accumulated 4.78 ERA, the fourth-worst mark in baseball – and their acreage arrangement is amid baseball’s best.
But the Red Sox went into this weekend antic a far-from-inspiring 22-26 record. And while the American League East is advanced accessible – Boston entered Friday alone three amateur abaft the first-place Yankees – one could acumen these Red Sox are added than aloof one aristocratic starting abode abroad from World Series contention.
Hamels, who entered the division owed $96 actor over four years with a vesting advantage for 2019, absolutely hasn’t aching his barter banal with the way he has pitched lately. The 31-year-old lefthander took the Citizens Bank Park bank Friday night accepting bargain his career ERA to 3.26, the best it has been back June 6, 2006, aback he was a bald three starts into his major-league career.
Which club antes up the best for his casework – and whether the Phillies will acquire – charcoal to be apparent over the aing two months.
Published: May 30, 2015 — 12:03 AM EDT | Updated: May 31, 2015 — 1:09 AM EDT The Philadelphia Inquirer
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