No Cole Hamels reunion this year, Phillies fans.
The Cubs decided Friday to pick up the $20 million club option on Hamels' contract. They could have let Hamels become a free agent while saddling the Rangers with his $6 million buyout, but the Cubs are a big-market team with rotation needs. Why let Hamels walk after that stellar second half?
Even without Hamels on the free-agent market, there are still several intriguing options for the Phillies, particularly lefties. Even below the Patrick Corbin tier, there is J.A. Happ and Dallas Keuchel. I personally have doubts about Keuchel having much success here, given his rising hit totals, propensity to keep the ball in play and the Phillies' below-average infield defense.
Here are the top available arms and how much money they could command (see story).
Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Flyers, Sixers and Phillies games easily on your device.