The prize of the trade deadline is coming to the Texas Rangers.
Major-league sources confirmed that the Rangers acquired the Philadelphia Phillies left-handed ace Cole Hamels in a complex deal that involves multiple players from each team changing hands.
The Rangers had not announced the deal, news of which broke during the Rangers’ 5-2 victory Wednesday night over the New York Yankees, but a source confirmed that the Rangers did not part with prized prospects Joey Gallo, Nomar Mazara and Chi Chi Gonzalez.
However, former All-Star left-hander Matt Harrison is part of the deal along with a cast of prospects: Double A right-hander Jake Thompson, outfielder Nick Williams and catcher Jorge Alfaro; and Triple A Round Rock right-handers Alec Asher and Jerad Eickhoff.
The Rangers also received left-handed reliever Jake Diekman. Both he and Hamels are under control contractually through 2018. Hamels is the big prize and the big expense, for the rest of this season as the Rangers make a desperate push for the playoffs and the next three as well.
General manager Jon Daniels and several other officials declined comment. The commissioner’s office must approve the deal because money is also changing hands.
“It’s definitely a good pickup for us,” first baseman Mitch Moreland said. “I think it will help us as a team, and hopefully we can continue to play ball hard every night out, all nine innings, and he can come in and be a part of that.”
Moreland also was sad to lose Harrison, who missed most of the past two seasons after having three back operations since 2013 and returned only earlier this month.
“We played a lot of ball together. The whole time I’ve been here he’s been here,” Moreland said about Harrison, the longest-tenured Rangers player. “I hope he goes on and continues to have a good career and get back where he was a few years ago.”
Hamels is owed the prorated portion of his 2015 salary of $23.5 million and $76.5 million over the next three seasons. His option for 2019 vests at $24 million if he reaches 400 innings in 2017 and 2018 and isn’t on the disabled list at the end of 2018 with a shoulder or elbow injury.
If he fails to meet those standards, 2019 becomes a $20 million team option with a $6 million buyout.
It was unclear how much cash the Phillies were sending to the Rangers, who shed $28 million in obligations to Harrison.
The Phillies nabbed three of the Rangers’ top-10 prospects in Thompson, Alfaro and Williams. Thompson, acquired last July in the Joakim Soria deal, is from Rockwall; Williams, who played in the Futures Game earlier this month, is from Galveston; and Alfaro, from Colombia, is out for the season.
The addition of Hamels gives the Rangers a 2016 rotation that will also likely include right-hander Yu Darvish, left-handers Derek Holland and Martin Perez, and either Gonzalez or Nick Martinez.
Darvish likely won’t be ready until May after having Tommy John surgery in March. Colby Lewis, who won his 11th game Wednesday, and Fort Worth resident Yovani Gallardo, who is scheduled to start Thursday, are free agents after this season.
“I’d rather not comment on that,” Lewis said about the trade. “I don’t know the full details.”
Hamels and Darvish will give the Rangers two premier starters atop their rotation. Hamels, who turns 32 in December, is 114-90 with a 3.30 ERA in his career and 6-7 with a 3.64 ERA this season.
His last start? A no-hitter Saturday at Wrigley Field.
Hamels had logged 200 inning in six seasons and 200 strikeouts in three. He is also 7-4 in 13 postseason starts with a tidy 3.09 ERA.
Jeff Wilson, 817-390-7760
A big deal
Those involved in the Rangers-Phillies blockbuster trade agreed to Wednesday:
▪ To the Rangers: Left-handed ace Cole Hamels, left-handed reliever Jake Diekman and cash. Hamels and Diekman are under contract through 2018.
▪ To the Phillies: Left-handed pitcher Matt Harrison, right-handed minor leaguers Jake Thompson, Jerad Eickhoff and Alec Asher along with highly-prized prospects catcher Jorge Alfaro and outfielder Nick Williams.