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MLB Rumors: Texas Rangers Perceived Favorite For Cole Hamels

Caylor Arnold-USA TODAY Sports
Caylor Arnold-USA TODAY Sports
Caylor Arnold-USA TODAY Sports

UPDATE (July 26, 1:35 p.m. PT): According to ESPN’s Jayson Stark, both the Los Angeles Dodgers and Texas Rangers are the favorites in the Cole Hamels sweepstakes:

The Texas Rangers and Los Angeles Dodgers have emerged over the weekend as the likely favorites to trade for Philadelphia Phillies ace Cole Hamels, multiple sources told ESPN.com.

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With Scott Kazmir now in Houston and Cincinnati Reds ace Johnny Cueto getting traded to the Kansas City Royals, the trade market has quickly heated up as the 1 p.m. PT non-waiver deadline approaches.

Among the more valuable commodities believed to be available is Philadelphia Phillies ace Cole Hamels. Amid ongoing trade rumors, Hamels threw a no-hitter against the Chicago Cubs Saturday afternoon at Wrigley Field. The performance was enough to improve Hamels’ trade value and the Dodgers are one of five teams interested in the left-hander, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports:

While the Dodgers have had continued interest in Hamels, it’s believed the Texas Rangers are the favorite, according to Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports:

Following up on the Rangers’ pursuit of Hamels, a deal wasn’t imminent as of Sunday morning, via Jon Morosi of FOX Sports:

When compared to other pitchers believed to be available, Hamels stacks up favorably considering his postseason pedigree and multiple years remaining on his contract. After the 2015 season Hamels is guaranteed $67.5 million over the next three years ($22.5 million each season).

Hamels’ contract includes a vesting option for $20 million in 2019 should he throw a minimum of 400 innings in 2017-2018. The option also stipulates at least 200 of the innings come in 2018 and is contingent on Hamles avoiding the disabled list with a shoulder or elbow injury at the end of the 2018 season. Additionally, the 2019 option year comes with a $6 million buyout.

Hamels is 6-7 with a 3.64 ERA, 3.20 FIP and 1.18 WHIP. He’s averaging 9.6 strikeouts per nine innings and is on pace to surpass 200 innings pitched for a sixth consecutive season.

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