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Agent says Cole Hamels won’t sign for Jered Weaver money

Jan 18, 2012, 11:19 AM EDT

Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Cole Hamels delivers a pitch to the Los Angeles Dodgers during the first inning of their National League MLB baseball game in Philadelphia

Cole Hamels and the Phillies avoided arbitration by agreeing to a $15 million one-year deal yesterday and afterward his agent made it clear that the 28-year-old left-hander won’t be signing a Jered Weaver-like extension with free agency waiting next offseason.

That doesn’t mean Hamels won’t bypass free agency to stay in Philadelphia long term, but if it happens the Phillies are going to have to pony up more than the $85 million over five years Weaver accepted from the Angels in August.

Here’s what agent John Boggs told Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com:

At the appropriate time, Cole is looking to be compensated as one of the premier left-handed pitchers in baseball. Without putting a number on it, we’ll leave it at the fact that he’s an elite pitcher. Look and see what elite pitchers are compensated with. Hopefully at the end of the day we’ll be able to get something done with the Phillies that will reflect that.

I don’t think [Weaver] is a parallel. That contract is great for Jered. I understand it. But he took a different path and left a lot of money on the table. He came up through the Angels system and grew up in their backyard. He’s pitching where he grew up. That situation appeals to him. It’s a similar situation to when I had Tony Gwynn. Without getting into specifics of what we’re looking for, the Weaver situation is unique to Weaver.

And he’s right, because when Weaver signed his extension in August the consensus was that he gave the Angels a sizable discount. Another factor is that Weaver’s contract bought out his final arbitration season and first four seasons of free agency, whereas any extension for Hamels would cover only free agent seasons at this point.

Barring an injury it’s hard to imagine Hamels getting less than $100 million on the open market and as a 28-year-old pitcher with a 3.39 ERA and 1,091 strikeouts in 1,161 career innings $125 million shouldn’t shock anyone.

  1. The Baseball Gods - Jan 18, 2012 at 11:25 AM

    5 years $99 Million with a 6th year option for $23 Million with a $10 Million buyout. Basically would make it a 6 year $122 Million deal.

    • uyf1950 - Jan 18, 2012 at 11:37 AM

      Not sure how you figure that it’s basically a 6 year/$122MM deal.

      1st) According to your plan he’s only guaranteed 5 years/$109MM.
      2nd) Unless the 6th option year is purely a player option with no strings attached the 6th year is NOT guaranteed.
      3rd) Hamels agent specifically said 6 years/$120MM was the starting point. Even if every thing in your proposal falls perfectly in place it only gets them to the starting point.

      Like I said yesterday on the topic if he hits free agency which at a quick glance the agent is certainly implying will happen. Look for at least 1 team (not the Phillies) to offer him at least 6 years/$132MM guaranteed.

      • CliffC - Jan 18, 2012 at 11:42 AM

        Link to where is agent said 6/120 is a starting point?

      • uyf1950 - Jan 18, 2012 at 11:47 AM

        CliffC – Here you go. Notice the 3rd paragraph.

        http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2012/01/hamels-agent-weaver-contract-not-a-parallel.html

      • The Baseball Gods - Jan 18, 2012 at 11:49 AM

        I would think a 6th year option for $23 Million with a $10 Million buyout would be enough information for you to figure out it was team option. You either keep him and pay him $23 Million or you buy him out for $10 Million and he becomes a free agent.

        This guarantees that he makes over $20 Million annually.

      • CliffC - Jan 18, 2012 at 11:51 AM

        Thanks for that. I missed that my first time reading it.

      • The Baseball Gods - Jan 18, 2012 at 11:57 AM

        His agent didn’t specifically say any numbers. Tim Dierkes, who writes for mlbtraderumors.com, “specifically” said 6 years/$120 MM was a starting point, not Hamels’ agent.

      • Jonny 5 - Jan 18, 2012 at 1:11 PM

        ““When you’re this close [to free-agency] you have mixed emotions,” Boggs said. “But Cole has come through the Phillies organization, and if you asked him his preference, more than likely he’d want to remain with the Phillies. That’s how it would be going into the negotiations, but every negotiation is different. Everything depends on our perceived value of what Cole is worth and what their perceived value of him is. That will dictate if a long-term deal gets done. We’ll always give the Phillies every opportunity to secure him.”

      • The Baseball Gods - Jan 18, 2012 at 1:33 PM

        Good work Jonny5. Great quote!

    • kopy - Jan 18, 2012 at 11:39 AM

      There’s just no way Hamels, if he takes the best offer, will be making less than $20 million a year. I would think more like 5/115 or 6/130.

    • lardin - Jan 18, 2012 at 11:45 AM

      His agent just said he wants to be paid like the elite Lefty that he is. Look at CC Sabathia’s contract. Hes got 127 million for the next 5 years with an option for 25 million after that. Thats a possible 152 million over six years. If you think CC is better than Hamels than discount it a little, call it 140 million over six years. If you thinks hes better than CC than look for 160 million over 6 years. Either way, Hamels is signing for less then million like you think….

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jan 18, 2012 at 12:13 PM

        If you think CC is better than Hamels than discount it a little, call it 140 million over six years

        Interesting to see how very similar the two of them are. Granted CC started pitching two years earlier, but here’s how they match up from 22-27:

        Hamels – 1161.1 IP, 3.39 ERA, 1.09 HR/9, 2.26 BB/9, 8.45 K/9
        Sabathia – 1269 IP, 3.75 ERA, 0.81 HR/9, 2.41 BB/9, 7.61 K/9

        Slight edge on the peripherals to Hamels, but A, Sabathia was pitching in a higher run scoring environment and, B, in the AL. So call it a wash. If I were Hamel’s agent, knowing the Yanks will be looking for another starter next year, he has to begin with CC’s first Yankee contract doesn’t he?

  2. odj810 - Jan 18, 2012 at 11:52 AM

    if 6 for 120 is a starting point thats pretty good. usually starting points are high when your in negotiations outside of freeagency. If they get him for less than 20 per thats a win win.

    • alang3131982 - Jan 18, 2012 at 12:03 PM

      There is like zero chance Hamels makes less than $20 million per season. That’s a win for the Phillies. Once the bidding gets under way, the starting point will be in the rear view.

      • The Baseball Gods - Jan 18, 2012 at 12:10 PM

        I agree that Hamels will sign for more than $20 Million anually, but the Phillies do have an entire season to negotiate with him before he hits free agency. That does make a significant difference in negotiations.

      • alang3131982 - Jan 18, 2012 at 12:26 PM

        Baseball Gods – not really. I mean why would Hamels/his agent negotiate. They have no leverage, just hypotheticals.

        I’m sure if the Phillies were to offer a contract from 2013-2018 for $160 million, Hamels would take it, but doubtful they’d do that.

      • The Baseball Gods - Jan 18, 2012 at 12:44 PM

        I know that you probably think that a player usually always makes his decision solely on how much money he is going to get. Did you ever think that maybe he actually wants to stay in a city because he likes it in Philly and does a lot of charitable work there with the schools?

        He would negotiate because he actually would like to stay with the team who drafted him and gave him his chance. He might not be willing to take a discount like Weaver did, but if he is offered a reasonable contract there is some justification for taking it rather than waiting til free agency.

      • The Baseball Gods - Jan 18, 2012 at 12:46 PM

        And they definitely have leverage. The leverage would be the threat of going to free agency and having the Phillies get into a bidding war for him.

      • alang3131982 - Jan 18, 2012 at 1:53 PM

        Considering i’m commenting on this article and i can read, i know that Jered Weaver took a hometown discount, so, yes players do that.

        Then in the same article, the agent for Hamels said he wanted to be compensated as a premiere lefty in baseball (and that this situation was nothing like Weaver’s).

        You dont get compensated as such negotiating with one party. You pit parties against one another. If you can find a quote from Cole saying he’d stay in Philadelphia for less money then elsewhere, I’ll stand corrected.

      • The Baseball Gods - Jan 18, 2012 at 2:09 PM

        So you are basically saying that no player should ever sign a contract before he hits free agency because he won’t get fair market value.

        Nobody can determine what his market value is before he hits free agency. Him and his agent have an idea of how much they think Hamels is worth, and if the Phillies offer a contract around that he will most likely sign it.

      • paperlions - Jan 18, 2012 at 2:09 PM

        Ryan Howard disagrees.

      • alang3131982 - Jan 18, 2012 at 2:19 PM

        No, what I am saying is that there are many reasons (three off the top of my head) to sign a contract before you hit free agency, but none pertain to Hamels. One, if you want to stay there long term (Weaver for example). Two if the team is willing to incredibly overpay (Ryan Howard for example). Three to mitigate some risk (Evan Longoria, Matt Moore, etc.).

        It doesnt appear that Hamels wants to stay in Philly if it means taking a perceived pay-cut. It doesnt seem like the Phillies are willing to give Hamels $25 million for 6 years (i’m sure Hamels would sign that) and I dont think there’s much risk in Hamels losing truckloads of money.

        So, in this case, I dont think it makes sense, given the player and everything that has been said publicly, for Hamels to sign a deal in season. By all accounts, several deep pocket teams would be interested in his services. Hamels only gains by increasing the bidding to the Phillies, Yankees, Red Sox, Nationals, Cubs, etc.

      • The Baseball Gods - Jan 18, 2012 at 2:20 PM

        Exactly paperlions. I wish I could give you 100 thumbs up!

      • The Baseball Gods - Jan 18, 2012 at 2:24 PM

        You don’t have to necessarily overpay a guy for him to sign a contract before he hits free agency. You are assuming that Hamels is going to ask to be overpaid as opposed to being paid fairly. If the Phillies offer what Hamels wants it doesn’t mean that they would overpay for him if Hamels just wants to be paid what he deems to be a respectable contract.

      • alang3131982 - Jan 18, 2012 at 3:10 PM

        If the Phillies gave Hamels a fair contract and Hamels wants to be paid as much as possible, wouldnt he then see if he could pit that fair offer against other teams on the open market?

        If Hamels’ goal is to make as much money as possible, he’s not going to just accept a fair deal without letting other teams one-up that offer.

        It’s not like the Phillies would withdraw the offer, so there is no risk to Hamels in letting that fair offer just sit there. If hamels cant improve upon that offer in a notable way in free agency he just accepts the Phillies, but if he can, he gets a better deal.

      • alang3131982 - Jan 18, 2012 at 3:11 PM

        Also, dont think Howard is an appropriate comparison. That deal is laughable. On the open market, the Phillies would have quickly realized that Howard wasnt worth the deal. If you’re going to give a player 150% of what he’s worth, he’ll sign whenever you want.

      • The Baseball Gods - Jan 18, 2012 at 3:38 PM

        Well I guess we will find out eventually. Just don’t be surprised if the Phillies are able to extend Hamels before he hits free agency.

    • Francisco (FC) - Jan 18, 2012 at 12:06 PM

      There’s no way Hamels gets less than $20 MM smackers per year in FA. But then I’m not worried, when it comes to pitching, for Ruben there is no such thing as overpaying.

    • alang3131982 - Jan 18, 2012 at 3:44 PM

      Oh yeah – it’s just fun to argue about, baseball gods.

      I’d bet on no chance, so we’ll see.

      If they do i’ll send you a Hamels RC. If they dont you send me a Wieters rookie card

      • The Baseball Gods - Jan 18, 2012 at 4:09 PM

        Deal

  3. drunkenhooliganism - Jan 18, 2012 at 12:24 PM

    How many pitchers are getting $20 million a year? I bet all of them have finished higher than Hamels fifth place finish in the cy young multiple times. I want the phillies to resign him, but I just don’t see teams looking at Hamels as one of the top five pitchers in baseball which is what I think he has to be to get over $120 million in guaranteed money. Id offer a four year $80 million extension if I was ruben and Hamels should jump at the offer.

    • alang3131982 - Jan 18, 2012 at 12:30 PM

      You must be drunk (joking). I imagine baseball teams dont rely on Cy Young voting in assessing talent (as those are measure of past success (lets not get into the faultiness of the measure) and a contract is about the future.

      You can easily make the case that Hamles is one of the 10 best pitchers in the majors (Halladay, Lee, CC, verlander, Lincecum, Felix, Greinke, Haren, Kershaw) and those dont become available often.

      • bbk1000 - Jan 18, 2012 at 4:18 PM

        Hamles?…haha

    • irishjackmp - Jan 19, 2012 at 8:24 PM

      Unless you are actually Reuben Amaro and have created a troll account with this post then I highly suggest you put the crack pipe down. The only thing more amazing than your absurd post is that someone actually gave you a thumbs up (so I am assuming you either gave it to yourself or someone from the Phillies front office surfs this site). If he and his agent were to “jump” at a 4 year deal I suspect his agent would never get another client.

      He is a terrific young lefty just entering the prime of his career with both a NLCS MVP and a World Series MVP coming off his best season about to enter free agency. Weaver took the deal he did because he still had a year or arbitration left on his deal and Aneheim was his hometown… neither of which apply to Hamels. And contrary to alot of people who think Hamels really wants to be here… we don’t know that. All players say it publicly to avoid a PR disaster… but we don’t know how he really thinks.

      The fact is this city has been slow to embrace Hamels under the absurd notion he isn’t “tough”. I am sure that’s not something that is lost on Hamels. Fans booed him like crazy in his first start last year because he had an off outing. Anybody think the fans would have booed Lee or Doc after one bad outing???

      This falls squarely on the shoulders of Amaro. How he went out and gave Howard (who is basically Adam Dunn circa 2008 at this point) $25m a year before locking up Hamels (take care of pitching before hitting) is beyond me. The longer the Phils wait, the higher the price goes.

      There simply is no way they get him under contract for less than 6 yars/$120m.

  4. danrizzle - Jan 18, 2012 at 1:29 PM

    Yes, we can see by the fact that you passed up commenting on the very same blog post that you are above all that nonsense.

  5. rexryanisablowhard - Jan 18, 2012 at 8:00 PM

    The Phils are getting old, get out while you still can!

  6. dirtyharry1971 - Jan 19, 2012 at 1:01 AM

    all that money from the same guy who wanted to quit and go home “during” the 2009 WS!! yea sign me up for that, loser

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