Cole Hamels and the remaining pitching options

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Sign James Shields

Oct 26, 2014; San Francisco, CA, USA; Kansas City Royals starting pitcher James Shields throws a pitch against the San Francisco Giants in the first inning during game five of the 2014 World Series at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Do the Red Sox have one more long contract to hand out? Unlike Max Scherzer, James Shields won’t cost $200 million, but the 33 year old is looking for five years and $110 million. Unlike Jon Heyman, I don’t see the Red Sox as being a suitor for Scherzer, but Shields would be a good fit. The veteran would be able to lead and anchor a young rotation, and has been a consistent force for four years now. Shields also has somehow manage to increase his velocity as he has aged.

Gabe Kapler gave him a sparkling stamp of approval, but Shields also does not come without his question marks. His lack of playoff success is the most glaring, but it is also a daunting prospect to carry a pitcher through his age 38 season at more than $20 million. He has yet to show any signs of wearing down yet, but the track record for 35+ year old pitchers is not excellent.

If he will settle for the  four year, $88 million deal HanRam got he is a great option, and he will not cost us any of our heralded prospects. Should we sacrifice financial flexibility in order to keep our prospects?