SAN DIEGO — Left-hander Cole Hamels agreed to a minor league contract with his hometown San Diego Padres that will pay him $2 million if he reaches the big league roster, according to two people with knowledge of the deal.
The people spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal is contingent on Hamels passing a physical. The former World Series MVP is expected to report this weekend to spring training in Peoria, Arizona.
Hamels, 39, made one start for the Atlanta Braves in 2020 and hasn’t pitched since then. He had shoulder surgery in 2021.
Hamels, who went to Rancho Bernardo High, was a first-round draft pick by Philadelphia in 2002 and was the MVP of the 2008 World Series with the Phillies. He pitched for the Phillies for 10 seasons and also was with Texas and the Chicago Cubs. He is 163-122 with a 3.43 ERA and 2,560 strikeouts in 15 seasons.
Roger Clemens will be an analyst for ESPN when the defending World Series champion Houston Astros host the Chicago White Sox on opening day.
Clemens made four appearances on last year’s KayRod Cast with Michael Kay and Alex Rodriguez. He will be stepping in on March 30 for David Cone, who will be doing the New York Yankees opener against the San Francisco Giants on YES Network.
“Roger has been sort of a friend of ours for the last year, so to speak, he’s in. He’s been engaged, knowledgeable and really present,” said ESPN Vice President of Production Phil Orlins. “You know, whatever past may be, he’s still tremendously engaged and he really brought that every time he was with us.”
Clemens was a seven-time Cy Young winner but his career after baseball has been tainted by allegations of performance-enhancing drug use. He is a Houston native and pitched for the Astros for three seasons.
Orlins said that with the rules changes and pitch clock, it is important to have a pitcher in the booth with Karl Ravech and Eduardo Perez.
“We don’t feel like we have to have the dynamic of Eduardo with a pitcher, but we certainly think that works. Throw in the added factor of rule changes and it is better to have a batter-pitcher perspective,” Orlins said.
Orlins did not say if this would open the door for future opportunities for Clemens as an ESPN analyst.