Rumor thread 7/19: Royals, Pirates interested in Maholm

I'll be at the Cubs game today with my nephew, so I'll do the best I can to juggle that and any incoming rumors, though I know all of you do an excellent job of keeping up on them in the comments section too.

Of course, this also probably means Ryan Dempster gets traded at some point while I'm at the game and unable to access my c2omputer...

  • 10:26 PM: The Royals and the Pirates are interested in Paul Maholm, according to Bruce Levine.
  • 9:28 PM:Multiple tweets saying that Ryan Dempster will not make his next start.
  • 9:08 PM: Ken Rosenthal tweets that Zach Lee is not going to be included in any Ryan Dempster trade.
  • 8:20 PM: ESPN's Bruce Levine is reporting what Tom reported days ago, that the Dodgers have an offer on the table for Ryan Dempster.
  • 4:52 PM: Back from yet another Cubs victory!  Meanwhile, according to Jayson Stark, one source is saying that the Red Sox are officially out on Ryan Dempster but remain very interested in Matt Garza.  This goes along with Buster Olney's article earlier that said the Red So are interested in long term pieces instead of rental.  Garza isn't a long term piece, but he gives them an extra year and a comp pick if they don't re-sign him.
  • 9:53 AM: ESPN's Buster Olney writes (insider only) that AL East execs once again wonder if Ryan Dempster is better off going to the NL West than the AL East.  This time it's because it may hurt his value if he gets hit hard in the AL East.  While that is the best division in baseball, that's often overplayed.  There are players with lesser stuff and savvy doing just fine in the AL East. He also lists Matt Garza as one of the more marketable multi-year pitchers out there right now.  But, of course, you already knew that.
  • Paul Sullivan reports that Theo Epstein says what we've saying all along, ""In certain deals, it is (pitching)," Epstein said. "You can express a preference for pitching, but if you're dealing with a club that has better position player prospects and you feel the position players in a certain system are a safer bet or offer higher upside, I don't think it's right to pigeonhole yourself to one situation. As a whole, not specifically regarding potential deals, we need to add a lot of pitching to the system. It's not enough to have a handful or two. You need waves and waves coming through your system, and we don't have that. We hardly have even one wave coming, so we need to rebuild a lot of pitching depth."  So yes, you get pitching if the team has it, but you can't force the situation.  The Cubs are in dire need of talent and, while they are starting to improve the quality of their organization, there is still a ways to go.  You can't say for certain that players like Soler, Baez, Almora and others will become stars, so you build as much depth as you can.  If you have a logjam at one position later, you deal with it then.  That said, the Cubs really need pitching, and they'll still focus on that in any return, but don't be surprised if they get a position player or two as well.
  • In the same article, Epstein also reiterates another thing we've been saying here, that the Cubs aren't ready to spend big in the free agent pool....yet.  "It's a nice way to add talent to an organization without giving up talent," he said. "But you can not make an organization that way. We have a lot of steps ahead of us that we need to take care of before we're in position to add a finishing piece or two through free agency. We'll always be on every free agent and see if it's the right player or the right value. But if we sat around and drew up a plan and had free agency as the answer to most of our problems, we'd be on a fool's errand there."  


Filed under: Rumors/Speculation


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  • Sounds like a plan to me. It'll be a pretty dull offseason in Chicago. We'll be looking to just plug a few holes based on those we create with deals in the next few weeks. We'll be a nice landing place for Ian Stewart-type players who are still young but have struggled to make good on prospect status. There may be pitchers like Anibal Sanchez available, but he'll be more valuable to teams that are closer to contending.

    I do expect the Cubs to be a big player in the offseason that follows the 2013 season, however. By then we'll know much, much more about our prospects. Most likely, we'll be in the market for an ace / No. 2 starter, because there's no realistic scenario of finding one in the system or developing one among the prospects we land in a trade.

  • In reply to Taft:

    I could see Nick Swisher or Youk to play a mixture of roles and lead by example in regards to taking pitches and getting on base. I could also see a starter (or 2) but probably a lower priced mediocre type guy you can give innings and not be terrible.

  • In reply to Taft:

    I like Sanchez and I think the Cubs would like to sign someone like him if it's a reasonable deal that gives them value. If the price gets too high, they'll be out.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    As they should be. We should be in on every major free agent, just checking the price. If it gets out of hand, we drop out. But if Sanchez wants to sign for 12-13 million a year, I hope the Cubs are bidding. If we are looking at 2014 as a year we want to be competitive, it won't hurt to start acquiring assets.

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    I believe today is the day Dempster gets traded.

  • Me too! Hope I'm here when it happens.

  • I saw a tweet where Dempster said today that a trade wasn't imminent

  • In reply to SFToby:

    Interesting. Guess they're keeping him well in the loop.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    Now that's interesting:

  • Dempster will probably traded while your at the game John....that would suck! Hopefully the Cubs will be courteous enough to wait until you get back home ..LOL! It seems the teams interested in Dempster changes day to day, the one constant seems to be the Dodgers , which probably means they won't get him.

  • In reply to Steve Flores:

    They should wait. I'll put a call into Theo and Jed :)

  • Need to know where you are sitting so I can wave when I see you on TV. Have a great time!!!

  • In reply to Hubbs16:

    Not my usual seats today. I'm in section 228, row 12. My nephew got them and wanted to go with his Cubs fan uncle ;) I'll be wearing a red hat and I sort of look like the guy on the right in the caricature for the rumor thread ;)

  • Have fun at Wrigley, John. I have the feeling Dempster isn't going anywhere. The other teams are going to low-ball and Theo isn't about to bite, like Hendley and the Ted Lilly trade.

  • In reply to cavemancubbie:

    I'd be surprised if that happens, but it's possible. We're hearing they already have a nice offer on the table, but not sure if it's enough.

  • Is it just me, or is it incredibly refreshing to hear a FO with a consistent PHILOSOPHY which doesn't change whether we've won the last 4 or lost the last 4? The Sullivan article doesn't exactly break new ground, and there are obviously some Cubs fans who wish we would be a little more active in the FA market this offseason - but nobody will be able to say that Theo / Jed haven't been remarkably consistent in espousing their philosophy:

    A) We are a couple years away if we're going to rebuild this thing correctly

    B) FA Market is for complimentary "get you over the top" pieces, not for roster patching

    C) Always want to be well stocked with pitching at all levels, because you never know what might happen (injury, lack of development, other needs, etc)

    Taking your lumps is a heck of a lot easier if you can see it as part of a larger plan!

  • In reply to Ryno2Grace:

    I agree. The only thing that has surprised me is the criticism of some fans that things aren't immediately better than ever. I guess we live in an age of instant gratification but those whom I respect have always pointed out that starting from scratch takes patience.

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    In reply to Hubbs16:

    I actually heard someone call into the Score last night advocating for keeping the team together because they "just need to win 20 in a row" to get back into it. I almost wonder if it was a Sox fan doing a parody call, it was so ridiculous.

  • In reply to Kevin Heckman:

    I heard that guy too... What an idiot!

  • In reply to Ryno2Grace:

    Amen. This organization finally has a plan and a direction. I would hate to be like the Marlins, feast or famine. I have been patient for decades, I can wait a little longer.
    Watching the small pieces fit together is so enjoyable. Thanks to this site and you knowledgeable, passionate, reasoned contributors, it's a joy to be a died-in-the-wool Cubs fan.

  • In reply to StillMissKennyHubbs:

    Are you talking about the 2012 Marlins? If not, I have to disagree. They've won 2 WS in about a 20 yr? existence. If the teams they had in Miami had been in Chicago, I'd take 'em, because we could have locked players up long-term.

    Miami's build, blow it up, build and win worked great....except for the whole being too cheap to keep great players.

  • In reply to cubbie steve:

    I'm not sure we disagree.
    "Miami's build, blow it up, build and win worked great....except for [on] the whole being too cheap to keep great players."
    Ummm, as I see it, "being too cheap to pay great players" is part of "blow it up".

  • In reply to Ryno2Grace:

    Exactly! You have to like the consistency. We've talked about building the right way since even before they were hired and they haven't wavered from it at all.

  • If you can get better position prospects, you get 'em.
    It's a no-brainer. They can always be traded for pitchers,

  • In reply to eaton53:

    Exactly. I know we all prefer pitchers but superior talent trumps all.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Well I actually hate pitching prospects. Statistically speaking, they are 1/2 as likely to make the majors and on average have careers that last 1/2 as long.

    If I were GM, I would acquire proven talent from teams who didn't want to spend for the arbitration years (like the Garza or Greinke trades). I would draft P in later rounds, but never in the first round, and I wouldn't trade much for P prospects. Rather, better to stockpile position player talent and trade the excess away for pitchers who have proven they can handle pitching in the majors.

  • It appears LaHair isn't in the lineup today. Hmmmm

  • In reply to SFToby:

    Because theyre facing a lefty

  • And a pretty good one in Buehrle.
    So of course LaHair will sit.

  • Someone wake me up when there is a trade! All this anticipation is driving me crazy! Great time for us cubs fans!

  • In reply to Joshnk24:

    My thoughts exactly!

  • In reply to Ibleedcubbieblue:

    I hope the Cubs winning, and looking good, is not going to
    stop the trades from coming. The long term future should
    be the #1 goal of Theo/Jed.

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    In reply to emartinezjr:

    Finally, the trade has gone down! Cubs, Red Sox. Cubs send cash to the Red Sox for Justin Germano.

  • casey coleman has been scratch from the game and heard he is heading to st louis and the word is that the cubs are chooseing between two of the final offers on dempster

  • In reply to dakota cubs fan:


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    In reply to John Arguello:

    Bruce miles on twitter

  • In reply to Patrick Fahey:

    Thanks Patrick, just got home and scrambling to catch up. Glad you guys are on top of it!

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Never mind, I just saw the Coleman scratch.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    What's the cubs record when you go to Wrigley?

  • In reply to Patrick Fahey:


  • In reply to John Arguello:

    john for some reason i cant comment but i can reply

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Vitters not in Iowa's lineup tonight , hmm

  • Guys, Something weird has going on with the comments. I've contacted our administrator. Bear with us! Lots to talk about. I'll be on Twitter until it's fixed.

  • According to Andrew Baggarly, "The Giants have "heavily scouted" the Cubs' and Royals' Triple-A teams."

    Any idea whi the Giants could want in AAA? I think I read they're looking fir relief pitchers....

  • In reply to cubbie steve:

    Relief pitching sounds plausible. Could also just be some sort of filler. Maybe an Alfredo Amezaga type? Can play anywhere. Maybe some of the older pitchers like Wells, Lopez, and Volstad?

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    According to espn dodgers made an offer.. Not really a surprise but just wanted to throw that out there

  • In reply to Patrick Fahey:

    Tom reported that a couple of days ago.

  • what are the chances of demp not pitching tomorrow at this point?

  • ESPN reportedly say dodgers have submitted an offer... didnt we hear that a couple days ago. im just loving it more and more here.
    and john how was the cubs game?

  • In reply to kingpro98:

    Had a good time, thanks!

    And thanks for remembering that we had that already :)

  • Hopefully this means they're getting close...all this refreshing is killing my productivity.

    Jon Morosi ‏@jonmorosi
    Sources: #Cubs, #Dodgers have exchanged names multiple times on possible Ryan Dempster trade. Other clubs were involved as of today.

  • In reply to North Side Irish:

    Saw that. Just posted that Zach Lee is NOT part of Dempster trade. Not that it should be a surprise to you guys.

  • Multiple sources tweeting that Ryan Dempster won't make next start.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I tried to tell last night the Cubs asked for Reed , Gould and Jackie Bradley , After the Dodgers told Theo to pound sand on Lee, lets see the final names really really soon, Say around 11 .

  • In reply to Bryan Craven:

    I was never thrilled about Lee, but I've only seen him once, so I'm not the best judge there. If they get Reed and Gould, I think I'd be happy with that.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I am told the Cubs asked for Lee and Reed out the gate, came back with Reed , Gould, Bradley. Tommorrow we see who won. This is the same source who told me a month before the draft Almora was the Cubs pick period, they would have taken him at 1 actually . I trust this source , alot . I have gotten zero in the last 24 hrs and i have sent a couple e-mails and texts , its like trying to break outta Alcatraz getting info on this FO ,even from people fairly connected. I like that tho. Ricketts has hit everything close to the plate since He targeted Theo .

  • am that is

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    Ned Colletti is a bitch!!!!! He must think he's dealing with Hendry still! He needs to pay thru the nose!!!!

  • Kevin Goldstein ‏@Kevin_Goldstein
    Interesting: Source indicates Cubs are targeting pitching "that could be in Wrigley this year" from Dodgers - which leaves me confused.

    Thoughts? Not sure who the Dodgers have that close to the majors. Eovaldi maybe?

  • In reply to North Side Irish:

    Eovaldi would be an excellent guess, as would Ethan Martin. I don't think it means they'll pursue any AAA guys, though they've been linked to Fife.

  • Not too surprising, but from MLB Trade Rumors:

    "Beyond their big-name talent, the Cubs are also getting calls about right-handed hitting bench players Jeff Baker and Reed Johnson, reports Ken Rosenthal (Twitter link)."

    Seems like half the team is drawing some interest.

  • According to some guy on the Cubs message board, KC requested the medical records of both Maholm and LaHair. Don't know his sources and can't vouch for him.

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