Hammel Not Happy About Being Pulled as Trade Rumors Pick-Up

Jason Hammel put together another good outing Friday. Hammel allowed a run on four hits through six innings to the Nationals on 90 pitches and he took the hill for the seventh inning with a 4-1 lead. Hammel gave up a leadoff double to Anthony Rendon, and Rick Renteria went to his pen. Neil Ramirez replaced Hammel and the Nationals scored their last run of the game on a single by Wilson Ramos. The run was charged to Hammel and closed the book on him for the afternoon.

Jason Hammel picked up the win and improved to 8-0 in his career against the Nationals, but he was not happy about being pulled from the game after throwing only 92 pitches.

According to multiple reports, Hammel was not asked about being lifted from the game after giving up the leadoff double. Hammel volunteered his thoughts.

PrintHammel told the beat writers, “I would have liked to have stayed out there in the seventh. I have no idea why I came out of the game. But I honestly believe you learn how to pitch when you get to 100 pitches. If you’re not allowed to reach that, that’s hurting you more than it’s helping you. It’s frustrating. I can understand for maybe a minor league guy, but we’re up here trying to win. I know it’s not Ricky’s fault. It’s coming from somewhere else.” Hammel added that he’s pitched with four teams and pitch count limits with the Cubs are the “most severe” he’s ever seen.

Rick Renteria said after the game that Hammel’s pitch count was not why he was lifted in the seventh, the tying run coming to the plate was why Hammel was removed.

During the game the Sun-Times reported, Jason Hammel could end up being the Cubs’ lone All-Star and he could actually be traded after the teams are announced Sunday but before the game is played on July 15. Hammel may have made his last start for the Cubs this season Friday and has only one more start before the break.

The Sun-Times reported “most of the teams in on Hammel want to strike a deal well before the deadline and get as many starts out of the rent-a-pitcher as possible for the price they’ll pay.”

Jason Hammel said less than 10 days ago that he understands what is going on with all of the trade rumors. And he admitted he knew what he was getting into when he signed the one-year contract with the Cubs.

The Sun-Times reported scouts from the Mariners, including Pete Vuckovich, Giants, Angels, Dodgers, and Blue Jays were at Nationals Park Friday to watch Hammel. The Yankees have been connected to Hammel and were looking to trade for a starting pitcher sooner rather than later. And that was before Joe Girardi announced Friday morning that C.C. Sabathia was done for the season.

While Hammel was not happy about being pulled before he was ready to leave the game, he said he knew was he was signing up for and he must have an idea the front office is trying to do what is best for him and the Cubs moving forward.

Jim Bowden provided a breakdown Friday of the players the Cubs might be able to acquire for Jason Hammel from the three teams he thinks has the best shot of acquiring him this month.

Yankees

According to Jim Bowden, Brian Cashman “has been speed-dialing his peers on a daily basis trying to add a starter” and Bowden’s report posted before the news that C.C. Sabathia would likely miss the remainder of the season. Cashman would like to add David Price or Jeff Samardzija to his rotation, according to Bowden, but there is a possibility that neither the Rays nor the Cubs trade their number one starters before the deadline. Plus, the Yankees probably do not have enough in their system to trade for either Price or Samardzija.

Bowden reported that the Cubs would ask for Luis Severino from the Yankees for Hammel and Cashman “will balk.” The Cubs will then ask for Gary Sanchez, the Yankees catching prospect. Bowden does not think Cashman would include Sanchez in a deal for Hammel but he would likely include left-hander Ian Clarkin. The 19-year old is pitching in A-ball and is 3-3 in 12 starts with a 3.49 ERA and a 1.25 WHIP. In 56 2/3 innings, Clarkin has struck out 61 batters while walking 19 and giving up 52 hits. The Yankees took Clarkin in the first round of last year’s draft. The lefty’s fastball sits in the 90-92 mph range and he can run it up to 94 mph. And he flashes a plus curveball with a sharp bite. Baseball America ranked Clarkin the Yankees seventh best prospect prior to the season.

Jim Bowden thinks a deal that includes Ian Clarkin would send Hammel to the Yankees.

Blue Jays

The Blue Jays have lowered their sights from Jeff Samardzija to a starter like Jason Hammel according to Jim Bowden, and he is not the only one that feels Alex Anthopoulos will not pay the price to acquire Samardzija. Bowden does not think the Jays would include LHP Daniel Norris for Hammel, much less RHP Aaron Sanchez or RHP Marcus Stroman. The Cubs could be looking at players, like outfielder D.J. Davis and lefty Jairo Labourt for Hammel.

The 19-year old D.J. Davis is struggling with Lansing and is hitting only .228/.284/.352 while Jairo Labourt has struggled this season as well. Bowden’s package for Hammel from the Jays is simply not enough.

Jim Bowden thinks the Cubs would trade Hammel to the Blue Jays “tomorrow” if Anthopoulos is willing to pay the price.

Mariners

According to Bowden, the Cubs like right hander Victor Sanchez and righty Edwin Diaz, the Mariners’ fifth (Diaz) and seventh (Sanchez) best prospects according to Baseball America.

Victor Sanchez is 19-years old and is 3-4 in 12 starts at the Double-A level this season with a 4.30 ERA and a 1.36 WHIP (47 strikeouts, 15 walks and 65 hits allowed in 58 2/3 innings). The Cubs feel the Mariners rushed Sanchez to the Double-A level this season according to Bowden. Sanchez is rather large (6-foot, 255 pounds) and can run his fastball into the mid-90s and he has pinpoint control while keeping the ball down in the zone.

Edwin Diaz turned 20 in March and is pitching in A-ball this season. Diaz is 2-4 in 15 starts with a 3.61 ERA and a 1.40 WHIP. In 72 1/3 innings, Diaz has given up 69 hits with 65 strikeouts and 32 walks. Diaz is 6-foot-2, 165 pounds and his fastball sits in the 90-94 mph range. Diaz has sneaky velocity and can ramp his fastball up to 96 mph.

Other Cubs Rumors

The Cardinals are looking for a starting pitcher. According to Jon Paul Morosi, the Cardinals are talking to other teams about trading for a starter. The Cardinals have scouted Jeff Samardzija, but it is unlikely the front office would trade Samardzija to St. Louis unless the Cardinals made the Cubs an offer they simply could not refuse.

According to Jim Bowden, the A’s continue to talk to teams about a starting pitcher and a second baseman. Billy Beane is willing to include any player in Oakland’s system, with the exception of Addison Russell. The A’s are believed to be interested in both Jason Hammel and Jeff Samardzija.

Darwin Barney is believed to be on the Blue Jays radar to fill a hole in their infield and on their bench. Alex Anthopoulos is not sure if he is going to acquire a second baseman or a third baseman. According to Jim Bowden, Toronto has scouted Martin Prado, Aaron Hill and Chase Headley “heavily” but all three are not playing well and each player is “overpaid” for what they are producing right now.

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