When the Chicago Cubs declined to pick up the right-hander's $12 million option, the explanation was that they didn't want to stand in the way of him pursuing a multiyear deal with another organization. It was said to be a decision of benevolence.
Other teams, however, weren't buying this at all. Rival executives assume that the Cubs cut Hammel because they believe he cannot help them for the salary cost. The Cubs didn't become a great team -- a great organization -- by giving away value.