But with a re-build taking place, the Phillies are now reportedly open to the idea of trading their elite starters:
Per Buster Olney:
The Phillies have indicated to other teams they are ready and willing to talk about Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels in trades.
Per Jon Heyman:
cliff lee and cole hamels are out there on trade market, as buster olney said. further words: phillies wont eat any $.
While that’s music to the ears of many rival general managers, the fact the Phillies suggest they won’t eat any money is going to make trading either player pretty difficult.
Lee is still owed $50 million dollars over the next two seasons (with a $27.5 million dollar team option in 2016 which morphs into a $12.5 million buyout) while Hamels is due $22.5 each season through 2018 and holds a team option in 2019 which includes a $6 million dollar buyout. Needless to say, neither player comes cheap.
There could be teams out there who’d take either Lee or Hamels off the Phillies hands if it’s just a straight salary dump, but I’d imagine Philadelphia would be interested in obtaining prospects as well which few if any teams would bite on.