The Phillies and Cole Hamels haven’t made any progress in contract extension talks for more than a month now, leaving roughly eight months for the two sides to work out a potential deal. Hamels will be the best free agent starter on the market next winter now that Matt Cain has re-signed, and there will be plenty of suitors for the left-handed, in his prime ace.
A problem on the team’s end could be the other pitchers on the payroll. Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee will make $40MM+ combined for the next few years, and there simply might not be room for another $20MM-a-year hurler in the budget. Shane Victorino will be a free agent after the season as well, plus Jonathan Papelbon, Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley, and Ryan Howard will remain on the books. It’s not a question of if the Phillies want the Hamels back, but whether or not they can make it happen.