Cole Hamels trade rumors have been swirling all offseason, but now the Phillies left-hander has indicated that he’d like to leave Philadelphia for a team ready to contend.
As part of a lengthy interview with Bob Nightengale of USA Today, the 31-year-old ace revealed:
I just want to win. That’s all. That’s all any competitor wants. And I know it’s not going to happen here. This isn’t what I expected. It’s not what the Phillies expected, either. But it’s reality.
Nightengale makes it clear that Hamels is not demanding a trade, but based on his quotes it’s tough not to conclude that he’d prefer one and he admitted: “I’d be lying if I didn’t say I was checking the internet to see the latest.”
Nightengale goes so far as to say that Hamels “is just as eager as the Phillies’ front office to move on.” The problem, of course, is that “moving on” depends on general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. accepting another team’s offer for Hamels and actually pulling the trigger on a trade that will provide the Phillies with young talent needed to rebuild.
Hamels is under contract for another four years and $96 million. He has a 20-team no-trade clause, but indicated to Nightengale that he’d accept a move to several of the teams on his list at this point:
There’s no better feeling than winning, and we enjoyed that for a long time in Philadelphia. I just want to win again. I’m no different than other guys. You just want to be in a position to win.
Phillies fans may not like to hear it, but there isn’t going to be much winning in Philadelphia for a while and both sides will probably be better off parting ways. Hamels’ quotes may be the final push that gets a deal done.