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Cole Hamels trade official: Cubs send Eddie Butler to Rangers in deal

ST. LOUIS — The Cubs’ trade for pitcher Cole Hamels became official Friday morning, with big-league pitcher Eddie Butler included in the package going to the Texas Rangers in the deal.

Class A pitcher Rollie Lacy and a player to be named later also go to the Rangers, who pick up most of the remaining $14 million guaranteed on Hamels’ contract. The Cubs take on $5 million of that obligation.

Hamels has about $8 million left on this year’s salary plus a $6 million buyout on next year’s $20 million club option.

Lacy, an 11th-round draft pick last year, was 5-2 with a 2.45 ERA for advanced-A Myrtle Beach.

Cole Hamels says goodbye to Rangers teammates in the dugout Thursday night in Texas.

The Cubs and Rangers reached agreement Thursday night, pending physicals.

Butler, who returned this week from a groin injury, is best known for pitching seven innings of relief in the Cubs’ 17-inning loss to the Marlins in the second game of the season.

Butler got the win with an inning of scoreless relief in Thursday’s walkoff win over the Diamondbacks.

A groin injury landed him on the DL in late April.

Butler

Hamels, 34, is a four-time All-Star — most recently in 2016 — but has struggled this year (5-9, 4.72 ERA and 23 home runs in 20 starts).

But away from the Rangers’ hitter-friendly home park, he had a 2.93 ERA with seven homers allowed in 10 starts.

And in seven starts this season against teams currently in playoff position, he is 2-2 with a 2.93 ERA.

A longtime scout who watched Hamels’ last start said his command looked shaky but his velocity was as strong as it has been in recent years — which had been a concern earlier this season.