The Milwaukee Brewers are still searching for starting pitching. Could they find a fit for a deadline deal with the Texas Rangers?
The Texas Rangers are 17 1/2 games out of first in the AL West. However, they’re only 16 1/2 games out of the AL Wild Card. Unless the Rangers turn their season around tomorrow, they’re going to sell at the trade deadline. The Milwaukee Brewers should have Rangers GM Jon Daniels on speed dial?
Who would the Brewers want?
The Texas Rangers do have several large contracts that they would love to get out from under. Shin-soo Choo, Elvis Andrus, and Mike Minor all have several years remaining on their deals at large numbers. The Brewers won’t deal for any of these guys either.
The name the Brewers need to call on is Rangers ace Cole Hamels.
Why deal for Hamels?
Hamels is in his age 34 season, but he appears to be as good as ever. In 84 1/3 innings of work, Hamels has racked up 84 strikeouts while only walking 33. His ERA sits at 3.74, and his WHIP is under 1.25. Hamels has given up18 homers in 14 starts.
Hamels averages around 91 MPH on his fastball, but he’s never been a big fastball guy. He relies more on his cutter, curve, and change up to keep hitters off balance.
He’s also a playoff-tested ace who fits the part of a top of the rotation starter, even in his age 34 season.
How bad is Hamels contract?
It’s not terrible. Hamels gets $22.5 million for the 2018 season. He also has a 2019 option worth $20 million with a $6 million buyout. A year and a half of Hamels for just over $30 million isn’t ridiculous.
Would Hamels come to Milwaukee?
This is a tough question to answer. Hamels has a limited no-trade clause that gives him veto power over deals to 20 Major League teams. It’s known that the Yankees are one of the teams he can block a deal to, but the other 19 teams haven’t been released yet. If Hamels could work out a deal to ‘guarantee’ his 2019 option, or ‘guarantee’ that it gets bought out if he wants to try for another pay day this coming off season.
What would a deal for Hamels look like?
He’s an expensive top level starter in his age 34 season. The Yankees are known to have interest and that could drive up the price. However, Hamels isn’t too interested in New York. The Milwaukee Brewers have the pieces in the farm system to entice the Rangers into a deal, but it could cost Brett Phillips or Corey Ray.
A Hamels-to-the-Milwaukee-Brewers makes a ton of sense for both sides. If Hamels wants a deep run in the playoffs with a chance at a ring, the Brewers are a fit. He could also work out a deal to get his 2019 option, or get bought out, pocket $6 millon, and then head to free agency. He could also stay in Texas, get bought out, and then go to free agency. It’s clear that no matter what happens, Hamels wins.