It was insert cliche here a tale of two seasons for Jason Hammel in 2014: in one, he was the surprise Chicago success story, a guy racking up strikeouts at a high clip while maintaining a sub-3 ERA. In the other, he was the acquired gun who fizzled in Oakland, getting blown apart with a 2-6 record and bloated FIP, a prime culprit in the team’s second-half choke job.
All told, Hammel finished 38th among starting pitchers in Zach Sanders’ end of the season rankings, though surely those fantasy owners who hoped that a move to the (at the time) high-flying A’s and their big ballpark would help Hammel continue his good vibes still harbor some bitterness.
A $20 million contract in hand, Hammel is now on his way back to Chicago, where he’ll look to recapture the success of his first three months of 2014. As far as fantasy owners are concerned, however, he’ll also be looking to prove that his 2015 value is closer to that of his Cubbie tenure than his brief stay in Oakland.
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