The Chicago Cubs have agreed to a deal with the Texas Rangers for left-hander Cole Hamels, according to multiple reports Thursday.
The Cubs were said to be involved in the bidding for southpaw J.A. Happ, whom the Toronto Blue Jays dealt to the New York Yankees earlier in the day.
A report from The Athletic has the Rangers receiving lower-level minor league prospects and salary relief in the proposed trade, noting high Class-A right-hander Rollie Lacy was scratched from his Thursday start.
Hamels is owed $22.5 million in the final year of his contract this season. The deal includes a $20 million club option for 2019.
Hamels, 34, is 5-9 with a 4.72 ERA in 20 starts this season. He went 11-6 with a 4.20 ERA in 24 starts last season, his first year posting an ERA above 4.00 since 2009.
Hamels was most recently named an All-Star in 2016. He has pitched for the Rangers since July 2015, when he was dealt to Texas from the Philadelphia Phillies just ahead of the trade deadline.
With the Phillies, Hamels was a three-time All-Star and won the National League Championship Series and World Series MVP in 2008.
For his 13-year career, Hamels is 152-111 with a 3.43 ERA. In 16 postseason starts, he’s 7-6 with a 3.48 ERA.
In Chicago, Hamels would be reunited with former Rangers teammate Yu Darvish, whom the Cubs gave a six-year, $126 million contract over the offseason. Despite the high-profile addition, the Cubs’ rotation ranks seventh in the NL with a 4.04 ERA as a group.
—Field Level Media