Cole Hamels has been the frequent subject of trade rumors recently, but if the Phillies have their way, Hamels will be in Philadelphia for the foreseeable future. The Phillies are preparing a substantial contract offer for Hamels, according to a report from ESPN.com's Jayson Stark.
Instead of trading Hamels for a pile of top prospects, Philadelphia is looking to sign him to an extension within the next two weeks. The 28-year-old left-hander is in the final year of his contract and will not come cheap. Matt Cain signed a five-year $112.5 million extension earlier this spring and it might take as much or more to lock up Hamels.
Despite an already high payroll, which includes multiple $100 million contracts, the Phillies are apparently confident they will reach a deal with Hamels.
"They're trying to sign him," said one of those executives. "And they think it's going to happen. At least that's what I was told."
What the Phillies have no way of knowing, for now, is whether Hamels shares their optimism.