Could Detroit Tigers Trade David Price and Add Cole Hamels?


I wrote earlier about how hard a decision it is to determine if the Detroit Tigers should be buyers or sellers. Well, what if there is a chance they could do both? Here is an out of left field, total “I haven’t read this anywhere” proposition, where President/General Manager Dave Dombrowski could instead be both a buyer and a seller in the same deal.

More from Detroit Tigers

Call it a Re-Shuffle option if you will — and maybe the coffee hasn’t really kicked in this morning and I’m a little out in space — but what if the Tigers traded for Philadelphia’s Mr. No Hitter Cole Hamels?

How could they make such a splash without many prospects worthy enough to land him? Remember that last year Dombrowski was able to land David Price in a 3 team deal with the Tampa Bay Rays and the Seattle Mariners?

I’m wondering if they could work out another three-team deal, this time among the Tigers, Phillies, and another contending suitor (Dodgers and Cubs would be potential targets). If the acquiring team wanted to entice Price to sign long-term, the Tigers might even allow them to negotiate with the left hander beforehand.

That team would then send a prospect package to Philadelphia, and Detroit would then receive Hamels. I actually even see the possibility of adding some smaller pieces to bring the Tigers Jonathan Papelbon in the same deal.

One big obstacle, as Matt Snyder talked about a few weeks ago is that Hamels has 20 teams on his no-trade list, and that the Tigers are one of them. However, Matt made a good point about how to clear that hurdle:

"It’s possible that all Hamels would be willing to waive his no-trade rights to a team like the Tigers if they simply guaranteed the option year at the end of the contract. The option year makes for a cheaper year at “just” $14 million, but Hamels will be 35 in 2019 so he’d be guaranteeing himself a nice payout in the event of injury or ineffectiveness."

Look, I still would rather have David Price than Cole Hamels long-term (and hopefully other teams think so as well). However, it seems more likely that Price is either going to be gone in free agency or command a deal in the Max Scherzer $200 million+ range.

Having Hamels in the middle of his $144 million contract looks much more reasonable than either of those two options. Having a chance to add some possible bullpen reinforcements wouldn’t hurt either.

Instead of selling the few tradeable assets the Tigers have for prospects a few years away from really contributing, this scenario covers the option of going for a wild card spot this year while  still focusing on contending in 2016 while players like Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez are still contributing at a high level.

Most likely Hamels hasn’t even been thought of as an option for the Tigers, especially if he really will veto any chance at going to Detroit. If anyone can pull off an unexpected deal like the framework I propose, though, it is Dave Dombrowski.

Next: AL Exec sees David Price Staying Put

More from Detroit Jock City