As the Yankees resisted signing big name free agent pitchers this offseason they very well may have had an eye on next year’s class that includes Phillies’ Cole Hamels. However, if they are going to bid on the young lefty they are likely to have competition from the Phillies themselves.
Phillies team president David Montgomery told Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer that despite some of the big contracts they already have, the Phillies expect to be able to bid big on Hamels.
“I don’t think it’s difficult,” Montgomery said. “We’ve let Cole know we’re anxious to have him stay here. Cole enjoys it here. He’s not only been a quality pitcher, but he involves himself in the community. It’ll probably come down to what we think is an appropriate length and what they think. You try to minimize risk by not going longer than necessary. And a player is looking for as much security as he can get. It’s an equation that takes time to hopefully get worked out.”
This could potentially set up another scenario where the Yankees could miss their top free agent target to the Phillies like they did with Cliff Lee following the 2010 season. If the Phils are limited on the amount of years they are willing to offer, that could be the way the Yankees beat them as they would feel more comfortable going six or seven years than they were with the older Lee.