Chicago Cubs: Time to eat some crow on Cole Hamels

(Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)
(Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images) /

 Ahead of the deadline, the Chicago Cubs were connected from everyone from rental arms to aces. The one guy they landed, though, has been a godsend.

Last trade deadline, the Chicago Cubs were able to make a splash and land Jose Quintana, all while giving up Eloy Jimenez and Dylan Cease in the process, and the jury is still out on that trade – although it’s starting to look like the South Siders may have come out ahead.

The Cubs tried to bolster the rotation more and acquire Justin Verlander at the waiver deadline in August. They were in the race the entire way, until he accepted a trade to the eventual World Series champion Astros at the last possible minute.

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This deadline, the Cubs acquired savvy veteran Cole Hamels, or Hole Camels, if you’re into that kind of thing. This move was met with much emotion, most of it negative. It certainly did not help Cubs’ fans feelings that Hamels is the only one to no-hit them since Sandy Koufax did it in 1965, that one being a perfect game.

With the Rangers, Hamels had a 4.72 ERA and a 5.20 FIP, with 23 dingers allowed in 114 1/3 innings. Texas is also a sandbox for hitters, so those numbers look to be part of the reputation of the Rangers ballpark. With the Cubs, it’s been a different story. Hamels has made four starts, pitching to a 0.72 ERA with a 2.40 FIP, and has yet to give up a home run.

There are a lot of parallels between the Hamels and Verlander trades. Verlander was not too great with the TIgers last year before anchoring the Astros’ rotation during their playoff run. So far, Hamels has anchored the Cubs’ rotation – with an eye on October.

Anybody who says that they expected this  from Hamels is lying. The plan was thought to be that he could just give some innings, save the bullpen and take his lumps, but he has been way more than that. His contract has a $20 million option on it for next season. At that price, the Cubs may not be willing to exercise it, but if he keeps pitching like this, it is not too far-fetched to think that they may try to bring him back on a shorter deal.

dark. Next. Hamels is proving he's this year's Justin Verlander

This trade may end up being one of the greatest in Chicago Cubs’ history, especially considering the Cubs got him for pennies.