Jason Hammel has re-signed with the Cubs after they traded him to the A’s along with Jeff Samardzija in early July, with Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reporting it’s a two-year, $18 million deal.
Hammel made 12 starts for Oakland, posting a 4.26 ERA in 68 innings after the A’s sent the Cubs prospects Addison Russell, Billy McKinney, and Dan Straily in exchange for Hammel and Samardzija.
Oakland is reportedly now willing to trade Samardzija and Hammel is returning to Chicago as a 32-year-old free agent. Prior to the trade he started 17 games for the Cubs with a 2.98 ERA and 104/23 K/BB ratio in 109 innings, but overall this past season was just the second time Hammel has posted an ERA under 4.00 in nine years as a big leaguer.
Freddie Freeman‘s elbow began barking in the second half of the season and he was a shadow of himself in the month of September. The Braves rested him for half a minute in the season’s final week but he still played 158 games in 2019. They said he was good to go for the NLDS but he was clearly limited, going 4-for-22 in the Braves’ series loss to the Cardinals.
Today the Braves announced that Freeman underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right elbow on Wednesday. The team said today that the procedure involved the removal of three fragmented loose bodies and the cleaning up of multiple bone spur formations.
It’s not clear if more rest down the stretch would’ve made a difference for him — and it’s not clear that the Braves had options at first base for the postseason that were substantially better than even a limited Freeman — but it’s clear that not having Freeman feeling like himself in the heart of the order was a problem.
Freeman is expected to be good-to-go for spring training.