We are just two weeks away from the July 31 non-waive trade deadline, and one of the top pieces on the market is left-hander Cole Hamels, who the Phillies are likely to move.
According to Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com, word is that the Phillies are making "potential progress" with the Los Angeles Dodgers and Texas Rangers in trade talks for Hamels.
The Dodgers, Heyman noted, have "quietly" continued making dialogue with the Phillies over Hamels. He also noted that Philadelphia has kept tabs on multiple teams' farm systems, including the Rangers' and Dodgers'.
This report comes just a day following MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan's report that said that the Rangers were unlikely to land Hamels, with a Rangers source saying, "If we were going to do that trade, we would have already done it by now."
With the deadline still two weeks away, the Rangers still seem like a very likely possibility for Hamels, even despite Sullivan's report. Since he's under contract through 2018, the Rangers don't have to be contenders this season in order for him to make sense. With Yu Darvish coming off the DL next season, they could trade for Hamels now and go for the postseason in 2016, '17, or '18.
This season, Hamels is 5-7 with a 3.63 ERA (3.41 FIP) in 18 starts. Over 116 2/3 innings, Hamels has a very good 123 to 37 strikeout-to-walk ratio. He's one of the best pitching options on the market.