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Smart money says Hamels gets his wish and stays

Posted on: February 22, 2012 2:55 pm
Edited on: February 22, 2012 4:52 pm
 

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Man, what is it about Philly?

Long the butt of jokes, major league ballplayers can't get enough of that town. One day, it's the Phillies' star lefthander Cole Hamels, the class of the 2012-13 free-agent market, pining to stay in Philadelphia, going so far as to say there is no deadline for a new deal. The next it was Shane Victorino, the sparkplug and heart of the team, who joined the small chorus.

"I'd like to stay here, too,'' Victorino, another free-agent-to-be, said. Victorino cited the very same things Hamels cited abut Philly: the victories, the expectations, the fans, the guys. Believe it or not, the guys are a big part of it.

"I don't want to go anywhere else. this is the place that gave me my start, the place that made me who I am today,'' Victorino said. "This is a great place to play.''

Victorino couldn't think of a bad thing to say. He wasn't even upset that Hamels gets a press conference to say how much he likes Philadelphia, whereas he has to do it one-on-one. "I'm not at that level,'' Victorino said.

Perhaps not, but he is one of the gang, part of the nucleus that makes the guys at the top want to stay a Phillie. Hamels credited the organization for finding the right core, the "six or seven'' players who have formed the personality of the most popular team in the game (to the players, anyway). It may just look like a very talented group to outsiders, but Hamels insisted that the organization has found "the right type of guys'' to form the core.

"We generally have very good makeup guys,'' GM Ruben Amaro said. "These are guys that want to win. I think they all have egos, but these are egos that allow them to perform at the level they need to perform at.''
 
Hamels' words were so glowing at his press gathering folks wondered whether they were actually scripted by the Phillies public relations staff. Alas, they were not. Yet, the organization was duly pleased by what they heard.

"I think he genuinely enjoys it here,'' Amaro said. "And I think he realized he made some comments in the past without thinking, and he thought about what he was going to say. He's also matured.''

This is a little different from the way the Cliff Lee negotiations went. That time, they were all done in secret, with the small coterie of Philly organization people who knew about them all swearing to keep the secrecy. The only hint of Philly's immense popularity at the time was Roy Halladay's overt effort to get to Philadelphia when his time was up in Toronto. Then Lee left at least $28 million on the table when he spurned the Yankees and went to Philly for $120 million over five years. "It's just the talent level and the expectations,'' Lee said. "There are sellouts every game. Good team, good enviornment ...  everything about it is positive.''

Phillies CEO David Montogomery, who helps set the excellent tone and the high payroll (it is bordering on luxury tax territory), appreciates the kind words from Hamels. "We certainly have the door open, and it seems like he does, too,'' Montgomery said. "He's been with us a long time. You never know where it leads. But the interest is there for us to retain him, and it seems like he'd very much like to stay.''

The vibe seems perfect for a deal here. In fact, it would be a shock if the Phillies and Hamels don't figure it out.

The early word is that the Phillies might be thinking about a contract in the range of $100-120 million. That is an estimate, but it makes sense because Lee is a bit more dominant. No matter, negotiations can get intense no matter how wonderful the public rhetoric. "(Hamels) still has (agent) John Boggs, doesn't he?'' Montgomery said. The CEO did say he thinks it's great there's deadline no restrict the talks. And Amaro said luxury tax considerations won't inhibit them either. "It'll come down to years and dollars, just like it does with every contract.''

Hamels certainly has made no secret of his desires. It would be hard to hide them, anyway, as he lives year-round in Philly. He may love it more than any solitary native San Diegan. The idea of playing back in his idyllic hometown, for instance, has no appeal for Hamels, who recalls going to an empty Qualcomm Stadium as a kid. "Nobody goes to Padres games,'' Hamels said. "Why would I want to go where fans only support the team from the third inning to the sixth inning? I'd rather play where fans are excited about the games.''

He is certainly playing no games when it comes to negotiations. Everyone knows where he stands. And where he wants to end up.

  

 


Comments

Since: Oct 4, 2006
Posted on: March 5, 2012 10:47 pm
 

Smart money says Hamels gets his wish and stays

ROFL! Loyal? Keep dreaming, i watched the Vet during the 90s and they were about like the current day Royals when it comes to seats filled, just because the phillies got good the past few years doesn't mean they're all of a sudden "loyal".  It just proves there's more bandwagoners in Philly. 
Do you really want to go into the total lack of support the Braves had before the 1990s? Because it was a far more egregious lack of support than anything experience by the Phillies and their fan base. 

There were seasons where Atlanta was pulling like 6-8000 fans a game. 



Since: Mar 18, 2009
Posted on: March 5, 2012 3:45 pm
 

Smart money says Hamels gets his wish and stays

ROFL! Loyal? Keep dreaming, i watched the Vet during the 90s and they were about like the current day Royals when it comes to seats filled, just because the phillies got good the past few years doesn't mean they're all of a sudden "loyal".  It just proves there's more bandwagoners in Philly.

Oh ok, so since you watched the games on TV you know everything about the Vet. In reality the Vet was the worst stadium in sports in the 90's, It was falling apart, views were bad, seating was tight and uncomfortable and hardly any bathrooms. It was overall a horrible stadium. Since CBP opened in 2004 the Phils have been in the top 10 in attendance every year and leading MLB the past couple years.





Since: May 9, 2010
Posted on: March 5, 2012 10:46 am
 

Smart money says Hamels gets his wish and stays

Just an FYI, no other city has more passionate fans than Philly and the stats prove it. 3 outta the 4 major sports teams are in the top 3 in attendance, say what you want, Phily fans are die hard and loyal, and clearly the best fans in the country!!

ROFL! Loyal? Keep dreaming, i watched the Vet during the 90s and they were about like the current day Royals when it comes to seats filled, just because the phillies got good the past few years doesn't mean they're all of a sudden "loyal".  It just proves there's more bandwagoners in Philly.



Since: Mar 18, 2009
Posted on: March 3, 2012 9:34 pm
 

Smart money says Hamels gets his wish and stays

Keep hanging your hat on attendance, because you have nothing to go back too. Your city is a joke, your fanbase is a joke, and most importantly YOU are a joke
GG have you ever been to Philly??? Philly is full of culture, History, Shopping, Family Restaurants, Cafe's and bars dating back to early 1900's. Some of the most prestigious colleges and Hospitals in the country are also located in Philly. In olde City, some of the streets are still cobblestone, the same cobblestone Ben Franklin and Betsy Ross walked on ..... But I can see why Philly is a joke .... MORON
If you want to judge a fanbase by attendance you would either have to it be the average people in attendance or the percentage that the stadium is filled. In home attendance, the 2011 the Phillies led MLB with an average of 45,440 per game and a pct. of 104.1%. In 2011 The Eagles were #3 in pct with 102.3 and this year the  Flyers are #3 in the NHL in avg per game 20,663 and #1 in pct filled 109.3.

Just an FYI, no other city has more passionate fans than Philly and the stats prove it. 3 outta the 4 major sports teams are in the top 3 in attendance, say what you want, Phily fans are die hard and loyal, and clearly the best fans in the country!!



Since: Oct 4, 2006
Posted on: March 3, 2012 4:40 pm
 

Smart money says Hamels gets his wish and stays

Philadelphia was 2nd in attendance last year( to the Yankees), how exactly did Boston have more sellouts?

I'd be pretty surprised if both teams did anything other than sell out every game last year, but overall attendance doesn't factor in stadium size. 



Since: Jan 14, 2008
Posted on: March 2, 2012 10:24 pm
 

Smart money says Hamels gets his wish and stays

Boston has had the most sellouts in baseball since 2004. Look it up.



Since: May 9, 2010
Posted on: March 2, 2012 2:32 pm
 

Smart money says Hamels gets his wish and stays

What in the hell does population have to do with it? Boston has 700,000 people which is less than Philly and have more sellouts.
Philadelphia was 2nd in attendance last year( to the Yankees), how exactly did Boston have more sellouts?




The Braves haven't been good since the 90's thats what I look back at, don't focus on the past couple of years.
Going to the playoffs in 2010 and winning 89 games last year is horrible right?




Since: Jan 14, 2008
Posted on: March 2, 2012 12:41 pm
 

Smart money says Hamels gets his wish and stays

What in the hell does population have to do with it? Boston has 700,000 people which is less than Philly and have more sellouts. Houston and LA are bigger than Philly and never sell out. That is the dumbest argument I've heard. I have nothing to go back to?? What does that even mean?? The Braves haven't been good since the 90's thats what I look back at, don't focus on the past couple of years.



Since: Mar 18, 2009
Posted on: March 2, 2012 12:12 pm
 

Smart money says Hamels gets his wish and stays

There is no doubt in my mind that the Phils sign Hamels. 27 y/o dominating LHP ....yes plz



Since: May 9, 2010
Posted on: March 2, 2012 11:38 am
 

Smart money says Hamels gets his wish and stays

GG you are so stupid. I wasn't saying the Phillies had a great history, but when a Giants fan comes on here and says how great the Giants are then I'm going to give him the facts that the Giants aren't a good team. Once again I see your history and you are all over the Phillies boards saying how bad the Phillies are and great the Braves are. Braves boards are so boring, just like their attendance, that you come to all of the Phillies topics. Guess what the Braves still had thousands of tickets not bought that last week of the season, and some were on Stubhub were being sold for $2 a piece. Great fan base. You and Willie Dog are such clowns on here.

The population in Philadelphia is almost 4 times that of Atlanta.  As a percentage, Atlanta averages about 7% of their population, Philadelphia about 3%. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o



Keep hanging your hat on attendance, because you have nothing to go back too. Your city is a joke, your fanbase is a joke, and most importantly YOU are a joke.


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