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Cole Hamels

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January 22, 2015 | By Jake Kaplan, Inquirer Staff Writer
READING - Cliff Lee has been throwing off a mound without issue and is on track to pitch come spring training, Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said Tuesday. Lee, working his way back from the left elbow injury that ended his season in August, has thrown off a mound three or four times already and is "in his normal progression to get ready for the season," Amaro said. The Phillies will send a staffer to Arkansas to watch the 36-year-old lefthander throw in the coming days.
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January 21, 2015 | By Jake Kaplan, Inquirer Staff Writer
WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. - The most prized righthanded arm in this year's free-agent class came off the board late Sunday when the Washington Nationals reportedly agreed with Max Scherzer on a seven-year, $210 million contract. The signing sent shock waves throughout baseball for obvious reasons. The Nationals have assembled a super-rotation, one that quickly drew comparisons to the 2011 Phillies. But the move also raises questions about the next shoe to drop in the starting pitching market, and whether a ripple effect of the deal could lead to a trade involving Phillies ace Cole Hamels.
SPORTS
January 18, 2015 | By Jake Kaplan, Inquirer Staff Writer
Speaking 35 days from the first player workout in Clearwater, Fla., Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. deemed it "likely" Ryan Howard will still be with the team come spring training. That despite previously stating he told Howard that the Phillies, who are looking to get younger and rebuild, would be better off without the embattled first baseman. "There's always awkwardness when we're making transitions, I think," Amaro said Friday before the annual Philadelphia Sports Writers Association banquet.
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January 15, 2015 | BY DAVID MURPHY, Daily News Staff Writer dmurphy@phillynews.com
YOU CAN cross one reclamation project off the list of potential Phillies starters this season. According to multiple reports, veteran lefthander Wandy Rodriguez has agreed to a minor league deal with the Braves after a similar one with the Phillies was scuttled due to a failed physical. Rodriguez, once one of the most consistent starters in the National League, has battled injuries in recent years, including a forearm strain that limited him to 12 starts in 2013 and a knee injury that preceded his being designated for assignment 2 months into last season.
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January 7, 2015 | BY RYAN LAWRENCE, Daily News Staff Writer rlawrence@phillynews.com
BARRING a blockbuster Cole Hamels trade - which could still happen between now and next month - the 2015 Phillies starting rotation is beginning to crystallize. The Phillies signed veteran righthander Aaron Harang to a 1-year, $5 million deal yesterday. The deal includes performance and award bonuses. Harang, 36, went 12-12 with a 3.57 ERA in 33 starts with the Atlanta Braves last season. "Aaron brings a wealth of experience and durability to our rotation," general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said in a press release.
SPORTS
December 21, 2014 | By Mike Sielski, Inquirer Columnist
It was around late June or early July, Ruben Amaro Jr. was saying Friday, that he knew the Phillies were going nowhere. The recognition was a long time coming. They hadn't been as high as third place in the National League East standings since April 22, and Cliff Lee was hurt and A.J. Burnett was pitching through a hernia and Ryan Howard and Domonic Brown hadn't hit at all and Chase Utley was fading after a fast start. Only then, Amaro said, did he and the franchise's decision-makers understand that it was time to stop kidding themselves about the sustainability of the Utley-Howard-Jimmy Rollins core, and it was that understanding that led the Phillies to trade Rollins to the Los Angeles Dodgers for two minor-league pitching prospects.
SPORTS
December 13, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
SAN DIEGO - The final 24 hours of these winter meetings, once they were unclogged by Jon Lester's decision to sign with the Cubs, assumed a frenzied pace. By the time Ruben Amaro Jr. and his staff departed California on Thursday afternoon, they could say the Phillies' demolition had begun. Teams were more willing to do business and now will explore their backup plans involving other Phillies assets. But, after seven starting pitchers changed hands from Wednesday night into Thursday, there was less clarity about where the biggest fish, Cole Hamels, could land.
SPORTS
December 12, 2014 | By David Murphy, Daily News Columnist
SAN DIEGO - For the first time in a few years, the Phillies departed the winter meetings looking as if they had a reasonable plan and the ability to execute it. Trading a player with a no-trade clause isn't easy, but Ruben Amaro Jr. accomplished it, and the early reports are that he netted a couple of plausible big-league pitchers in return for shortstop Jimmy Rollins. If the reports from scouts are to be believed, neither Tom Windle nor Zach Eflin possesses top-of-the-rotation upside.
SPORTS
December 12, 2014 | By Matt Gelb, Inquirer Staff Writer
SAN DIEGO - John Henry, principal owner of the Boston Red Sox, flew last week to Atlanta for a second meeting with Jon Lester. The pitcher helped Boston win a World Series. He beat cancer and threw a no-hitter two years later. He grew up in the Red Sox organization. Now, Henry needed to sway a beloved figure. Boston's final offer, according to Yahoo Sports, was six years and $135 million. Lester signed with the Cubs for $155 million. He rejected those emotional ties for a better deal.
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