Hamels Isn’t Worried About Free Agency
Cole Hamels looked good in 5 2/3 innings this afternoon at Bright House Field. He will pitch a few innings in an exhibition game next week in Philadelphia before pitching in the home opener April 9 against Miami at Citizens Bank Park.
Hamels becomes a free agent after the season. The Phillies and Hamels are not close to an extension, but Hamels isn’t too worried about it. Here is what he said:
Q: Surprised or upset at all a deal might not be struck before Opening Day?
A: No, I haven’t been thinking about it at all. This is something where it’s going to linger until something happens. Fortunately for the way I go out every single day and the approach I take is just to go out and get in good shape, get my workouts in, do everything I can possibly do right on the field, and things will take care of itself.
Q: When news broke Magic Johnson is buying the Dodgers everybody was saying, ‘Oh, that’s good news for Hamels.’ Did you think anything about it?
A: I didn’t know Magic Johnson knew anything about baseball. That’s my reaction. (laughs) I’m kind of glad everything can move on. It’s good to know all Major League teams have a functioning ownernship, and things are more clear for everybody, not just in baseball.
Q: But you didn’t think about how that could help you?
A: No, that’s not what I’m thinking about.
Q: How would you categorize negotiations this spring?
A: I don’t know. It’s all in Ruben’s hands. If I just get in good shape and I play, the Phillies will make offers and will counter I guess until things look the way they need to look.
Q: Did you come down here hoping you’d have a deal?
A: No, I never put any sort of deadline on anything. I guess I’ve got until the start of Spring Training next year. I guess that’s kind of what it’s down to. I’ve got 162 games to play, and then postseason and try to go to the World Series. That’s always been my focus, being in the best possible shape to win a World Series again. That’s just who I am. I just want to win and play my best with my teammates and winning a championship for the city of Philadelphia.
Q: Does your gut tell you that you’ll be back because of the way this team has handled its homegrown players?
A: Yeah, it’s a great feeling to know they really value their homegrown guys, the guys they develop and taken with high-round picks. You don’t get too many opportunities to really get that high-round pick and then see them get to the Major Leagues and stay in the Major Leagues and have success. I think the Phillies have definitely shown that they want to keep those guys around because that’s how you build a team. I guess I’m fortunate enough to have the years in my favor with how young I am. They really like the young guys and keep them around because they don’t come around too often.
Q: How often do you talk to your agent John Boggs?
A: I don’t know. Every other week? It’s more so he wants to know how I’m feeling and how the starts went and how my family is doing or how great my golf game is. Or if I’ve gotten any at-bats. Now I can tell him I’m 1-for-2 in Spring Training.
Jim Salisbury and I co-authored the book The Rotation, which is now available. Check it out here!
Here are our upcoming book signings:
- April 2: Barnes & Noble in Plymouth Meeting, PA, 7 p.m.
- April 3: Chester County Book Company in West Chester, PA, 7 p.m.
- April 26: Barnes & Noble in Marlton, NJ, 7 p.m.