The 28-year-old left-handed Cole Hamels is no doubt in the Yankees 2013 offseason plans, if he doesn’t sign a contract extension with the Phillies before he is scheduled to hit the free agent market a year from now.
Good news, the Phillies are in contract talks with him, but according to Jim Salisbury of Comcast Sportsnet, the two sides are only discussing a one-year deal.
The two sides could revisit the idea to extend him on a multi-year deal later on, but there seems to be no reason not to do that now. So there seems to be a decent chance that he will indeed hit the open market, giving the Yankees a chance to bid on him a year from now.
“There’s plenty of time down the road,” Phillies assistant GM Scott Proefrock told Salisbury. “That’s all I’ll say. Right now we’re focused on a one-year arbitration deal.”
Salisbury seems to think that Hamels could be extended for something similar to Jared Weaver’s five-year $85 million deal he signed with the Angels. That would be an average annual value of $17 million per year. However, if Hamels hits the open market a case could be made that he would be in line for something along the lines of CC Sabathia‘s seven-year $161 million deal.
It’s hard to tell if the Phillies would be able to afford such an extravegant contract. Their payroll was a huge $165.9 million last year, a huge increase from their $138 million payroll a year before. Not that they couldn’t move some payroll around to make room for Hamels, but it does complicate things increasing the chances that he will hit the open market.
The Yankees have stayed pretty firm with their budget this offseason, but supposedly have been discussing whether or not to extend that budget to add another pitcher. If they don’t extend the budget it could be a sign that they are waiting for Hamels or Matt Cain next offseason.