Chicago Cubs: Fifth starter options abound heading into offseason

(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /
4 of 6
Chicago Cubs
(Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images) /

Chicago Cubs: Cole Hamels everything Cubs needed and then some

The Cubs hold a one-year, $20 million team option on Cole Hamels. Is that too expensive? If Chicago chooses not to pick up his option, he has a $6 million buyout in his deal the Rangers will pay as part of the agreement from the trade that brought him to the Cubs. But if the left-hander becomes a free agent, he will probably seek a multi-year deal.

Next season, Hamels will be in his age-35 season. Would Chicago commit multiple years to a pitcher already in his mid-30s? I doubt it. Picking up an option makes more sense, but, then again, you’re committing a good chunk of payroll to Hamels with other needs on the roster.

Re-signing Hamels would also make three-fifths of the rotation left-handed. Smyly and Montgomery makes two other starting pitchers under contract for next year who are also left-handed. That might be too many lefties, depending on who you ask.