Five Players Chicago Cubs Should Get To Be Real Contenders

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Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

Cole Hamels, LHP, Philadelphia Phillies

This is the player I think Epstein is hoping most to land. Hamels would be a longtime answer for the Cubs. Pairing him with Lester, Jake Arrieta, Jason Hammel and Kyle Hendricks would make the Cubs’ rotation powerful for years.

The Cubs have been in touch off and on since last August, when the Cubs claimed Hamels through the waiver wire after the July 31st non-waiver trade deadline.

The Cubs were not able to come up with a deal back then, but staying in touch with Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr may make the Cubs favorites to land the lefty.

Hamels comes with a hefty price tag. He is owed the balance of $23.5 million of this year, and $70.5 million over the next three season. He also has a $20 million team option ($24 million if he goes to a team on his no-trade clause. The Phillies have indicated that they would throw in another $10 million in cash to help pay, but it is still a big investment.

In addition to paying Hamels all that money, the Cubs would also need to give up some quality prospects.

This is where they have an advantage over other teams. They have a lot of elite prospects that are close to major-league ready, and some of them don’t have a spot available in Chicago. There is an abundance of talent in the Cubs’ system, and they will need to give some of it up to get Hamels.

Giving up some quality talent to get a proven, quality talent like Hamels is a move that Epstein should do. Some of the other players available could be just a rental-only option, and giving up their talent for that would be a mistake. The Cubs have the money and the prospects to go in on Hamels and have him for the next four and a half seasons. He would really make the Cubs contenders for years to come.

Next: Does Moving Kris Bryant Signal Bigger Moves On The Way?

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