Matt Garza trade talk is buzzing

Matt Garza trade talk is buzzing
Will Garza be traded?

The recent chatter on the blogosphere and twitter-verse is that Matt Garza will get traded soon.  There's lots of information and it can get dizzying at times.  Opinions run rampant, speculation abounds, and the line between rumor-mongering and reporting gets blurred.  Tom at Cubs Insider and Brett at Bleacher Nation, both of whom (among others) are bloggers I trust, and both have sources that indicate that talks are indeed going on.  Dave Kaplan of CSN chimes in with,

"Hearing that talks on Matt Garza are heating up. Lots of interest because he is under control contractually for two more seasons. Price though is incredibly high so not sure if a deal gets done. Toronto, Yankees, Boston are all involved."

There is also talk from national sources such as Jon Heyman and Jim Bowden.  So maybe this thing really has legs.

Among the topics being discussed and debated...

  • The teams that are involved.  Generally there are 4 teams that are rumored to be in the mix: Blue Jays, Red Sox, Tigers, and Yankees.  Of these teams the Yankees may have the best high end pitching prospects while the Blue Jays have the most depth.  The Red Sox look to have neither the top pitching prospects nor the depth to compete if the offers get too big.  In fact, I wonder if Boston GM Ben Cherington may have been hinting at the Garza talks when he said, "We’re actively considering and looking at starting pitching options also, but we haven’t found one yet where we feel like the acquisition cost is the right one. That doesn’t mean that it won’t come. It just hasn’t come yet."
  • The prospects involved.  Bruce Levine floated the names Kyle Drabek, Deck McGuire, Anthony Gose, and Jake Marsinick from the Blue Jays which some took to mean all of them in one package.  That's unlikely but it's possible that those are some of the names that are being discussed.  They all fit the profile of what the Cubs are looking for -- and the Cubs are said to be asking for a lot.  But whether the Jays are willing to part with one or more of these prospects remains to be seen.  The rumor from the Tigers side, meanwhile, involves top pitching prospects like Jacob Turner and hard throwing LHP Andy Oliver along with a couple of position prospects.
  • Garza's worth.  There are some that put a lot of stock in the fact that Garza has 2 years of cost control rather than the 4 years that other recently traded pitchers have.  My opinion is that it should certainly be taken into account, but I also think there are also other factors to consider.  In the end, what matters is who your scouting and evaluation people think will give you the best chance to win, and there are many reasons to think Garza can be that pitcher.  Stats like FIP and WAR indicate that Garza was simply the best pitcher of the group that's been on the trading block this year, and that he should be able to maintain that kind of success over the next year or so.  There's also the fact that Garza has experience both pitching in the AL East as well as in a pennant race and playoff atmosphere.  Teams may value Garza as simply the better fit and the better pitcher if the plan is to try and make a run in the next two years.  An extra two years of cost control doesn't do you much good if you don't think that pitcher is good enough to take you over the top.  Those of you who read my blog regularly know that I believe cost control does matter-- a lot.  But I also think there are times when it should be balanced with other factors.  And those factors vary from team to team and situation to situation.  Less years of control make for some risk and a shorter window, but it may be one worth taking for a team that feels the time to strike is now.

As for me, I wish I knew what the right answers were right now.  The feeling is that a Garza trade is a very real possibility, but to what team and for which players are the questions everyone is asking right now.

Filed under: Cubs Rumors

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    John, thanks for the update!!! I'm going crazy over these trade rumors, literally drooling over the possible returns...Lets hope it's completed soon and we get some good young kids out of this...I really enjoy talking Cubs baseball with you all here, THANKS!!!!

  • In reply to Luigi Ziccarelli:

    Your welcome...I enjoy talking baseball with all of you as well. We all need to have a beer together sometime ;)

  • Well John, the saying goes "Where's there's smoke, there's usually fire". My gut feeling seems to have been right and the Garza being traded things has some legs this time. The Cubs need to be blown away and the fact that at least 4 teams might be bidding increases that chance.

  • In reply to Steve Flores:

    It would seem the talks are serious. Cubs fans have been down this road before, though, with Jake Peavy and Brian Roberts. So I'm still only going to believe it when I see it!

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Strange analogy...with Peavy and Roberts they were BUYERS not SELLERS....

  • In reply to gposner:

    I think you completely missed the point here. The analogy is that the rumors were much talked about and never completed. It has zero to do with whether they were buyers or sellers.

  • Yeah there's too much talk now not to believe there's not a deal coming. It's a really good thing to have all of these playoff caliber teams competing for Garza who could be a difference maker. Looks like come spring training time we can say about the team "that done blowed up real good". How do you feel about those Detroit prospects John?

  • In reply to draco:

    I think Detroit can make a good offer. They have some high ceiling pitchers, particularly Jacob Turner, but LHP Casey Crosby and Andy Oliver are two other guys who have front of the rotation stuff. LHP Drew Smyly doesn't have as high a ceiling but he's more polished. They have the arms to get this deal done.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    A package of Turner, Castellano, Oliver and Crosby would be sweet.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    That would be sweet. Big overpayment for the Tigers, though. It would really clean Detroit out a far as high end prospects. My guess is that we get two of them if a deal happens.

    That's the reason some think Toronto is the favorite here. They can offer a similar package but still have enough depth left to have a strong farm system left -- but I suppose if Detroit really wants Garza then they may gut the farm a little since it's their only chance to best the Jays offer.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Didn't Detroit gut their system a few years ago as they acquired Willis and Cabrera from the Marlins? If so, than they have shown that they aren't averse to emptying the system if they feel it gives them the tools to win it all.

  • In reply to supercapo:

    You're right, Detroit hasn't been averse to trading prospects. It's one of the reasons why I consider them a sleeper. It wouldn't surprise me if they offered a big package-- but the top 4 prospects, however, are a different story. They didn't give up that much for Cabrera and Willis, so I don't think they'll do that for Garza.

  • In reply to supercapo:

    The Tigers restocked the farm when they traded Granderson.

  • In reply to Northside Neuman:

    They got mostly MLB ready guys, though...Austin Jackson, Phil Coke, Max Scherzer.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    You are right, of course, the Blue Jays can make that trade, and it won't hurt their system like it would Detroit's, but Detroit may be more desperate. I would think, because of their farm system and their recent TV deal, Toronto has to see their window of opportunity as wider, though not much wider because of the division. Detroit's window is much narrower because of finances and age. They may see Garza as meaning more to them. They might also see Garza as being a bigger difference maker in their division.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    All very good points, Michael, and I don't disagree at all in principle. I think Detroit has strong motivation to make a deal and as supercapo mentioned, they aren't averse to trading top prospects. It's the top 4 that I have doubts about. Garza has nowhere near that value. Even 2 of them would constitute an aggressive offer from them.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    At this point though, the Tigers' top two prospects, Turner and Castellano, are probably as good as the Blue Jays' top two prospect, and both teams' top two prospects are probably better than the Yankees' top two and certainly the Red Sox's top two.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    Detroit is, to me, in a division much like the NL Central - to be had with a big strike now. It's hard to understand (for me) how Toronto can play for a top spot in that monster AL East.
    If there is a deal to be made and if the prospects are of approximate equal value seems Detroit would be the one more likely (desperate?) to sweeten the pot in a (god save me) "All In" mode type deal.

  • It would be nice to get a package of at least 2 high level pitching prospects and 1 to 2 position prospects back for Garza (preferrably a good 3rd base prospect). The teams with the depth to work that deal sounds like the Jays and Tigers. That would allow the Cubs to flip one in combination with another inhouse prospect to the Padres for Rizzo.

    My question is what is Rizzo's value? I mean the Reds just gave the Padres a very nice package for Latos, who is 24 but has a touchy shoulder.. That package included another talented hitting 1st baseman who was blocked by Votto. So the question is how much do we offer the Friars for a guy who plays a position they now have two and possibly three guy at? I'd go no higher than a good pitching prospect and a mid-level outfield or infield prospect, which the Cubs seem to have an abundance of at the moment.

  • In reply to neuman35:

    I think that kind of package makes sense. The trouble for the Cubs is getting -- and then parting with -- a good pitching prospect, something they don't have a whole lot of, especially in the upper minors.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    If they can flip one of these guys they may get from Detroit or Toronto for a 23 year old left handed power hitting 1st baseman. You have to do it, guy like that could be manning the position for the next 10 years... And Rizzo's minor league numbers look amazing...

  • Trading now seems to be the best way to get top dollar in return. I don't see the Red Sox as a viable option unless they really come in strong. If Garza goes to them and the Sox win it all next year, some of Epstein's wonderboy stuff will go away. I just can't see these two teams making a blockbuster trade until the dust settles a bit. My vote is the Tigers. I like what they have to offer best.

  • In reply to Break The Curse:

    I keep having this nagging suspicion that the Tigers wind up making the best offer. Not sure I have any reasoning behind this one. Just a weird feeling. I think they have the pitching to get a deal done, and they were pretty close last year. A one-two pitching punch of Verlander and Garza may make them awfully tough int the postseason.

  • In reply to Break The Curse:

    As much as I hate to disagree, I think you're right. Trading now does seem like the best way to get top dollar in return, but a solid pitcher that you have at cost control still seems to bug me. Oh well! Let's hope they get at the very least 2 top tier prospects and 2 guys that you can insert into the 40-man roster.

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    I don't see Boston as an option either considering they've dumped like 5 prospects into their last 2 deals..I was watching a video clip from NESN and the guys were saying about the Theo compensation getting tied into a Garza deal..Bull crap, these guys still have issues with Theo leaving and Theo and Co won't diminish their return on their most valuable chip!! I really think Detroit's gonna make the biggest push..Imagine Verlander, Garza and Phister 1-3...Great rotation, maybe the best top 3 in the AL

  • In reply to Luigi Ziccarelli:

    I think that's what would be tempting for Detroit. They made a nice run into the playoffs last year and have to be considered the favorites this year. Having Garza to slot in behind Verlander makes them a legitimate threat in a a short series.

  • If the Cubs do trade him to Toronto and then flip some of the prospects
    to SD, my question is

    Who could the Cubs get in the deal
    Who could SD get in the deal

  • In reply to emartinezjr:

    The one thing SD likes other than pitching is good athletic players to cover the ground at Petco Field. If the Cubs get someone like Gose, I could see him being flipped for Rizzo. Seems like a fair match.

  • I guess I'll retract what I said yesterday about them trading him. I don't like this move, but I also do not dislike it. I guess we'll just have to wait 'n see what we get in return.

  • In reply to lokeey:

    I know what you mean. I'm conflicted as well. It seems that Theo feels a lot like many Cubs fans do in that he's not eager to trade Garza, but has said that if it "significantly" improves the team's chances going forward, then he'll do it. Basically he's saying, you can have him, but it's really going to cost you. As long as that's the approach, I'm okay with it.

  • With some many team wanting Garza, this would be the best time to
    trade him. The package we get has to have the 1 key player we
    really want. Most of the prospects must be low minors so they
    don't have to go on the 40-man roster.

  • In reply to emartinezjr:

    Precisely. The Cubs have Garza for two years, but they really aren't going to compete in 2012 so one of those years is moot. Not to mention, every start he makes takes away a start from a young arm who might get experience.

    The thing that killed me last year was giving starts to the likes of Rodrigo Lopez. Just worthless.

  • In reply to Jimmy Greenfield:

    Jimmy - In fairness to Hendry, he did invite several pitchers to spring training (Braden Looper comes to mind). None of them stuck - so when Wells and Cashner got hurt, he had to scour the trash bin for replacements (Davis, Lopez and Ortiz).

    Davis pitched one good game, Ortiz was a disaster as a starter and "ok" out of the pen, and Lopez was very "meh" ... Q had a habit of leaving him in too long.

    E/H & Co have at least stocked up on those "7th, 8th and 9th" starters TE spoke of - for what it's worth.

  • In reply to MoneyBoy:

    Good point. I was thinking they could have at least given some AA or AAA pitchers a shot but looking at who they had last year there really weren't any options. I guess this is what Theo is addressing now, having options when things go wrong. Hendry had none.

  • I'm starting to get really excited here. Like many, I was on the fence about trading Garza. But, I'm now fully on board. Theo and Jed want to collect assets and the best way to do so is to sell high on guys or to sell when the market dictates the highest return. So, the timing is right on Garza. Plus, the Cubs look to have a bit under $42 million off the books from 3 pitchers alone, not even including the $4-6 million more per year it will take to extend Garza, to enter the market next year when it looks like the free agent pitching class will be very strong. Maybe I'm reading too much into this whole thing, but a Garza trade might even be sending a signal to impending free agent pitchers that we have a ton of money to spend next offseason. Could this mean we finally get to have our cake and eat it too?

  • In reply to jjshook:

    I meant to say a bit under $41 million coming off the books from Zambrano, Dempster, and Garza (if traded) as I'm guessing his salary will be in the $8-9 million range this year.

    John, I cleaned the basement yesterday and you're post about 2nd baseman made the experience a lot better. Tons to think about. Thanks.

  • In reply to jjshook:

    Thanks! Glad I could make that basement job at least somewhat more tolerable! Once the hot stove cools down I hope to write more pieces like that.

  • In reply to jjshook:

    I wrote a piece a few days ago about how the Cubs are in a unique position to sell off assets for prospects, have a bad year or two and collect multiple high draft picks, then when they have a strong farm system in place, they can start spending money like a big market team again. I think this thing can be fixed in 4 years where we'll have both a strong farm system and good young team on the field. Not saying they can't win earlier than that, just that in 4 years the Cubs could go from a dead-end organization to one that's sustainable and produces a steady stream of talent.

  • In reply to jjshook:

    One of the things that really excites me about the new regime in Chicago is how thorough they are. Theo's comments about how we need to know not only who starters 1-5 are, but also who is going to be starters 6-9. I remember back when Wood and Prior were mainstays in the rotation. A lot of talk was giving to whether or not they could stay healthy and how good the Cubs would be if and when the rotation finally proved to be healthy, but very little ever seemed to be done to prepare for the inevitable flood of injuries to the pitching staff. It seems to me that Theo, Jed and company are much better organized, and are better at looking at the big picture than what we have had in years.

  • I think you just summed up the most compelling reason to trade Garza now John. "I think this thing can be fixed in 4 Years..." What good does a pitcher like Garza do in that 4 year span, other than get older, maybe collect 15 wins a season and possibly get injured? That's assuming we even shell out the cash to keep him beyond the 2 years of control.

    Do this deal now and get as much as you can! Can't wait to see what we get back... I'd rather watch some exciting young talent develop over the next couple seasons, than suffer through another year of being told a bunch of retreads "give us the best chance to win".

  • In reply to My3Stooges:

    My gut says a deal eventually gets done at this point. I wasn't always sure that was the best, but the trade of Sean Marshall along with the pursuit of cost-controlled players over superior talent seems to tell me that Theo/Jed are planning a longer term rebuild. And if that's the case, then having Garza around doesn't do you much good.

    As Jimmy pointed out above, you have two years control but at least one of them will be while the Cubs aren't going to compete. The extra 3-4 wins (per WAR) that Garza would theoretically provide over an average starting pitcher is a lot less valuable to the Cubs than it would be for a team in contention. That could the difference between making the playoffs or watching it from home.

  • In reply to My3Stooges:

    I agree, they are very deliberate and thorough which is great. I also think Theo learned his lesson last season as the Red Sox's starting pitching started taking on water in September and there was no help to be had organizationally.

  • fb_avatar

    John, I'm still hearing Texas being mentioned in conjunction with Garza. Is that a hedge against the Darvish talks falling through, or could Daniels want to have both of them in the same rotation? Would it be wise or risky to wait until the 30 day window on the Darvish talks are through to deal Garza. If the Rangers don't sign Darvish, they should be in on the Garza talks by default, which could drive the price for Garza up even further. On the other hand, I don't see the downside of waiting two more weeks. The teams that want Garza now are not going to find anyone comparable in that time span.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    Too risky for me. For one, I think they sign Darvish and once they do they'll be a lot less motivated to deal for Garza. If the Cubs get a good offer now, they should make the deal. If Tor, Det, of NY make an aggressive offer, I don't think Texas can or will blow it away anyway. They've all got very good pieces to offer.

    Jurrjens is one guy other teams can turn to, but he isn't as good as Garza, but if the Braves lower their price than it becomes a lot more tempting.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to John Arguello:

    Jurrjens is not only not as good, but he also is a health risk that Garza has not been.

  • Do you think they will only make a trade if they can get a prospect
    to flip to SD for Rizzo. If so, what team might have that prospect.

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    In reply to emartinezjr:

    Big e, I think it is highly likely that Uncle Theo and Cousin Jed are consulting with their long lost Cousin Josh in San Diego about what prospects the Cubs might get in exchange for Garza. From the Padres' perspective, they not only would like a young close to major league ready arm for Rizzo, but they are also said to desire a middle infielder, which we have plenty of to spare.

  • In reply to emartinezjr:

    I think they'll make a deal if they feel it improves the teams chances down the road. Not contingent on getting pieces for Rizzo deal.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to John Arguello:

    Agreed, getting prospects that the Padres would take for Rizzo is secondary, and the prospects the Padres might get from the Cubs for Rizzo may not necessarily be part of a Garza deal. They may be prospects the Cubs already have. A Garza deal may simply allow a Rizzo deal to happen without it really hurting the Cubs.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    That's a good point. Just adding depth may allow the cubs to part with a player they may not otherwise feel comfortable trading.

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    Im not a espn insider but i still look at the rumor page to see the headlines and it says byrd is on the block and possible suitors are the red sox and nats. are you hearing anything john

  • In reply to Bryan Bell:

    It sounds like speculation based on what Levine said the other day, but it makes a lot of sense for both teams. I'm not expecting a lot for Byrd, but he could net a decent low level guy with upside.

  • As long as the infielder is not Lake. I think the other pieces will
    fall in place. If we can get 1 top pitching prospect, Rizzo and another good prospect it would be great.

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    In reply to emartinezjr:

    Lake is such a high risk/high reward type. I'm not sure the Padres would want him, but I'd do that deal. I think Lake, for all his tools, will never walk as much as our front office would like, and he may never be as fundamentally sound on defense as they would like either. There is no doubt Lake is a great athlete, but so were Corey Patterson and Felix Pie. Lake, for all his athleticism, is a lot like them when it comes to pure baseball instincts, and it will probably be the thing that keeps him from reaching his potential the way Starlin Castro is likely to.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    From what I've heard, many teams have asked about Junior Lake over the last year, but as a pitcher. As long as he has his arm to fall back on, Lake isn't as risky as most people suggest he is.

  • In reply to elusivekarp:

    It minimizes his risk somewhat in that he throws hard enough to be a pitcher, but at best you're looking at a 21 year old guy you hope can be an MLB reliever in 3 years. I think if you're asking about Lake so you can turn him into a RP, you're probably not planning on giving up a whole lot.

  • In reply to emartinezjr:

    I would trade Lake for Rizzo. Not sure he's a Padres type player, though.

  • I'd like to see Hutchison included in any trade with Toronto.

  • A lot of people like him. Ceiling isn't ad high as some other names mentioned, but very polished for a young guy. Good control and commsnd. Good feel for pitching.

  • The ultimate victory would be trading Garza, getting a lot top prospects, and then signing him as a free agent in two years. If he doesn't sign an extension or if he doesn't like his new team, I think that would be a very real possibility. The Cubs could be ready to contend then and have lots of money for free agents!

  • In reply to Fitz:

    Now that would be quite a coup!

  • Thanks for the updates John. Do you hear anything about Big Z and the Marlins or Soriano and the A's?

  • In reply to johnnywest333:

    Haven't heard anything on either of those trade possibilities lately. Seems like all Garza, all the time now ;)

  • > The Tigers are an interesting case. Jacob Turner is one of those prize assets that you can go to the press conference with and say "Cub fans are gonna have the time of their lives watching this guy blossom..." Of course, they need at least one more of those players, probably two. Not to mention another prospect thrown in.

    I think my new cause is not acquiring everyone's superman in waiting- Mr. Rizzo from San Diego. Check that- Mr. Rizzo of Las Vegas. Las Vegas as in AAA because he wasn't good enough to stick in the majors last year. He SUCKED! when he was with the Padres. He wasn't disappointing. He was AWFUL! He was given a chance and he fell on his face. Small sample size....still young... Blah blah blah. I watched him play ( I happen to like Mudcat Grant as an announcer. If anyone ever rolls dice on Brenly as manager again, that's my choice to replace him....) and I didn't see anything that made me say "oh yeah, He's a keeper." And since every Cub Fan and their mother is taking this "Well Jed loved him and Theo loves him therefore we all love him..." just makes me ill. Theo and Jed loved him THEN!!!!!!!!! The hype has overtaken his actual status which is currently the 1st baseman for Sin City. NO THANKS!

  • In reply to felzz:

    I agree that the Rizzo love has probably been a bit disproportionate and maybe he's not as good as everyone thinks/hopes. He does have flaws. He's no sure thing. I don't know if it's fair to judge him yet either. My biggest question is how much we should trade to get him. What if the Cubs do get a top SP prospect...do I want to trade him for a 1B? I'm not so sure. But if we pick up someone like Gose? Then all of the sudden the Cubs have 3 CF prospects. At that point I'd consider trading depth to shore up a 1B. Guys like Jackson, Szczur, and Gose all have their share of flaws too.

  • In reply to felzz:

    i understand that rizzo didnt do too well when he was called up, but if i recall correctly there was a certain 2nd baseman for the phillies who was called up a number of years ago and didnt do that great either, he was then included as the throw in piece of a trade to the cubs. that second baseman ended up being RYNE SANDBERG. i guess first impressions arent everything in baseball.

    i agree with you that most ppl only like him becuase t/j are so high on him, but theres a reason why they are so high on him. he plays a huge position of need for us, and hes basically on the block after the padres traded for alonso. also he absolutely crushed minor league pitching, and if we can trade an expendable piece for a guy who could manning a hot corner for the next decade at wrigley, i think we have to be optomistic that it will work out.

  • fb_avatar

    John, I mentioned this way up in the thread, but it bares repeating just for conversations sake. The Tigers' top two prospects, Turner and Castellano, are probably as good as the Blue Jays' top two prospect, and both teams' top two prospects are probably better than the Yankees' top two and certainly the Red Sox's top two. The difference between the Blue Jays and the rest of them is down the line. There is no doubt in my mind that the Blue Jays 10th best prospect is a better prospect that the Tigers' 10th best and so on. The Blue Jays have depth, like the Rangers, with which to sweeten a deal. The Tigers, Yankees and certainly the Red Sox don't.

    The Reds system is deep, and the Marshall deal, by itself, really didn't change that, and even in the Latos deal, the Reds dealt from strength. They kept the very best arms in their system. The Blue Jays are deep in that way too. It's a matter of how bad the Blue Jays want Garza. If they want him bad enough, they can bring a package to the table which will blow anyone else away, and still not really hurt their own future. The only other team that could do that is Texas.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    I agree with this. I'm most intrigued by the Yankees top arms, though. I think they have the highest ceilings. If they offer Banuelos as the centerpiece, I think that's tough to match up with. They also have solid position prospects and isomeone like Phelps to throw in on the back end. I think the Yankees can make an excellent offer that may be more top heavy than a Jays deal. I like the Yanks top end prospects, the Jays depth, and the Tigers willingness to trade their top guys. All of them can put a heck of a package together, so I'm potentially happy with any of those situations.

  • Hey, John. Just found the site. Great articles, keep them coming.

    If I had to put money on it, I'd say the Jays win Garza. And I bet they overbid too. Maybe 2 of those pitching prospects you mentioned with 2 other prospects thrown in, but I'm guessing 3 of those pitching prospects and *maybe* even 3 of those prospects and another player thrown in. I'm thinking they want to save a little face after losing out on Darvish.

    And I think the Cubs want to deal Garza. He *would* be great to build around, but I'm betting with only two years of control they'd much rather have high-end prospects at this point in their rebuilding. I get the feeling with all these comeback-player-of-the-year-candidate types that what they're doing is buying a bunch of low-risk, high-yield players that they can play regularly in hopes that one or more of them has a breakout year that they can cash in on at the trading deadline or after the season.

  • In reply to Carne Harris:

    Thanks Carne Harris!

    I agree. I think that if Theo/Jed get offered great prospects, they'll definitely trade him. I think if they get offered mid-level prospects, they won't, however. Their preference, though, is that someone does offer great prospects.

    I think it'll be interesting to see what happens with all these "lightning in the bottle" types. They are definitely trying to get something for nothing with those players. If someone like Stewart does well and the Cubs have a low cost replacement ready, I can definitely see them cashing in.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    The best thing that could happen to the Cubs is if Stewart became the player scouts thought he could be when he was still a prospect.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    Would give them a lot of options. They could trade him, but if he turns out to be a key player and the team is contending, you can resign him too. He fits the philosophy.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    On the mark Michael. My Lineup...

    1st...LaHair
    2nd...Torreyes
    3rd...Stewart
    ss...Castro
    rf...?
    cf...Jackson
    lf...Dejesus

    C...?

    Our sole focus should be pitching...pitching...pitching.

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    In reply to GoCubs:

    Torreyes is at least 2-3 years away from the majors, and that's if he doesn't flame out/get injured/suffer setbacks, etc.

    The thing to keep in mind with all of the prospects we are acquiring, the lower the level they played at, the less likely they become big leaguers. A TON of guys look great at short season/rookie lg/A ball, but when they hit AA and play against better talent they start to weed out fast. That's one of the complaints about the Red Sox/A's trade, the prospects the A's got look good but they are so young anything can happen.

    At this point Torreyes is very interesting, but until he has success at AA I'm still just going to ignore him. And as much as I'd love to see a little guy be a great MLB player, that almost never happens, for whatever reasons, so don't pencil him in as an all-star.

  • In reply to Just Win:

    I understand your point, but...

    If the Cubs are gonna "write-off" 2012, then it is better to get all of the "hotshot" prospects and let them have 2012 of MLB experience without being under the constant gun. Let them learn while in the Big leagues--if they fail, they fail. Rather they fail while giving their best shot in the Big league then in AA or AAA. Need to think "outside of the box."

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    In reply to GoCubs:

    If you play someone in the majors before they are ready you can ruin their psyche permanently. They start to doubt themselves and they can never get their confidence back. Gary Scott is just one example. Torreyes is way too far away from the major leagues to just throw him in the lineup and see what happens. His bat will show when he's ready, and that happens by advancing him like everyone else and seeing how they do against tougher competition.

    Torreyes has only played 67 games in A ball, low A at that. He's probably going to start this season at A or high A, and if all goes well finishes at AA. In 2013, if all goes well, he would likely get time at AA and maybe, maybe, a taste of AAA, and perhaps start knocking on the major league door in late 2014 or 2015.

    But it's still more likely he washes out. Only a tiny percentage of guys in A ball become anything in the majors, it's just too early to get excited about A ball prospects.

  • In reply to Just Win:

    Again, I completely understand your perspective, but...Need to stop worrying about psyche of adults who are playing a sport--Either they can play or they can't. If they can't play, then the club needs to stop wasting resources and the adult needs to go find a job like the rest of the people.

    Gary Scott flunked--so be it. Gary Scott got only 198 at bats in MLB in two years with the Cubs...And nothing in the minors suggested that Gary Scott was potential all star. I am suggesting that these guys get at least 400+ at bats (in one year) at major league level before they are judged.

    As it is, very small % of prospects become stars, so why not find out at the earliest whether they can play or not?

    Need to be BOLD about 2012. I am willing to watch these potential stars struggle for a full year where they get their 400+ at bats.

  • In reply to Just Win:

    Much like Billy Beane. Everyone always talked about his skill but they rushed him through the minors and even to the majors, despite his head never really being in the game.

    Not everyone can handle the mental duties of everyday baseball. Some people can't handle failure.

  • Interesting to see the 'slow and steady' sentiment we've espoused in our little corner of the internet on a major media outlet:

    http://www.cbssports.com/mcc/blogs/entry/22297882/34081383

  • In reply to Eddie:

    Interesting..old news to us here...we've been talking about that approach for months now! It's so refreshing to see the Cubs build the right way for a change.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Amen. I get so annoyed on twitter hearing people say, "C'mon, Cubs, no Pujols, no Fielder?? DO something!" We've had many star-centric teams over the years and most didn't break .500. I'll take the rebuild and a consistent playoff team down the road.

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    Congratulations are in order to Cousin Jed and his wife on the birth of a son.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    Saw that. Very understandable that baseball has been on the back burner all day for the Cubs!

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    Sources tell me that the Cubs were not put on the back burner. Jed had his cell phone with him in the delivery room, and he took phone calls from A.A. and Cashman. Also, McLeod was in the delivery room with a stop watch and a radar guns to check the speed of the baby's delivery. I love that Cousin Jed. He leaves no stone unturned in his search for talent.

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    In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    Oh, I almost forgot. Those same sources tell me that Merril, Jed's wife, was okay with the cell phone in the delivery room, but both she and her Doctor thought it was over the top when Jed asked the Doctor dawn catchers gear.

  • Torreyes isn't going to be with the big league team next year, GoCubs. Remember the new emphasis is on player development. Throwing him out there at 19 and telling him to sink or swim isn't development at all. There is a process where players mature both physically and as a baseball player. This is what successful organizations like Tampa do. Except for rare talent, they move players one step at a time. The key here, if the Cubs want to be a top notch organization, is patience. Taking unnecessary gambles with players is more likely to undermine the process of rebuilding rather than speed it up.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I would argue that I am preaching patience--just in a different way then it has been done in the past. Anyway, I don't own or run the Cubs, so no worries. :)

  • In reply to GoCubs:

    That's cool. I just have a very different opinion on developing players.

  • In reply to GoCubs:

    Plus, why would any team bring a potential fixture at any position up and start his player service clock prior to that player being truly ready for the big leagues? Letting players develope and collect service time is a dumb business in the baseball world...

  • per MLBInsider the finals offers are in from teams on Garza and Theocracy is considering which to accept, expect a resolution soon .

  • In reply to Bryan Craven:

    Sounds like a New Year's Gift in the making!

  • In reply to GoCubs:

    Reminds me of the NYE DeRosa trade from a few years back. The Trixies were up in arms over that one.

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    I saw that on the Bleacher nation boards, hopefully this guys right on..He seems legit...I hope we get some really good young players back, it's been a long time since we had a good group of youngsters come up at the same time...I know he said the Tigers were the team he thought would win the derby..I wonder who besides Turner, Castelleros and Oliver the Cubs were looking at?

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