There isn't much news today from a Cubs standpoint on a late Sunday morning, but we'll round up whatever we can find...
News and Notes...
- Update 11:30 AM: There are teams interested in Jeff Samardzija if the Cubs can't get a deal worked out with their big RHP including the Nationals and the Blue Jays. The Nationals see Samardzija as a potential replacement for Dan Haren while the Blue Jays may lose Josh Johnson. We also know that the Diamondbacks were interested around the trade deadline. The Cubs would likely prefer to get a contract done with Samardzija and keep him in the fold, but if a compromise can't be reached, then the Cubs need to explore their options. Samardzija is considered a core piece, but no player is untradeable when you are in the Cubs situation and there is some thought that if Girardi does indeed come to the Cubs, then the Cubs may be open to expanding their search to bring in talent from other organizations.
- Nick Cafardo writes that the Cubs always knew Joe Girardi was a long shot but they're going to give it a shot anyway. But his argument isn't a new or creative one, it goes like this, "Let’s be real, the Yankees would be stupid to let Girardi go without tying him up with a lucrative deal. Girardi was one of the top managers in baseball this season. You normally can’t have that many injuries — lose that much payroll — and survive. The Yankees not only survived, they took their quest for a playoff spot into the final week of the season." Eh, didn't people say Theo would be crazy to leave Boston too? i think you need more behind it than that.
- The part I like about the article is that Tony Pena wouldn't be a consideration to replace Girardi. I had Pena on my list of candidates at #4 and though he isn't on the Cubs list, I spoke to a top industry source that considers him a great motivator and great working with young players. If Pena comes along with Girardi, I'd be very happy about having that combo of leadership talent on the field.
- Patrick Mooney writes that as the Cubs pursue a possible former catcher at manager, it could affect what they do as far as their catcher on the field. Mooney believes the Cubs could make a run at Jarrod Saltalamacchia or Brian McCann, with Salatamacchia looking like the more likely of the two. This of course, is assuming they don't get qualifying offers, which would complicate things. We mentioned similar thoughts and such a move would likely cause a domino effect with the Cubs then looking to deal Castillo for another left-handed hitter such, or less likely, use Castillo as part of a package to obtain David Price.
- Nick Cafardo also suggests that the Cubs would be interested in free agent to be Bronson Arroyo, but here's the catch: He wants a 3 year deal at age 37 and has peripherals that are not as good as his results last year. Does that sound like a Cubs signing to you?
Just for fun...
- The sense I'm getting from Girardi-hopeful Cubs fans is that the longer it takes, the better it is for the Cubs. After all, if he wanted to stay in NY, why wouldn't he have taken the deal by now? And just to add fuel to the fire (and a little bit of fun), reader Michael swears he saw Girardi at the Hawks game yesterday in the VIP boxes. Now that would be interesting, wouldn't it? Starbucks, part 2? Of course, we don't even know if the Cubs have permission to talk to Girardi yet or that it had anything to do with the Cubs at all. Heck, we have no proof that it was Girardi or just a guy that looks like him, but if any of you are going to the Bears game tonight and see the Yankees manager up in the luxury suites at Soldier Field, then we can really have some fun.
- Speaking of some fun, The Onion did a nationwide poll on the Cubs next manager.
- MLB Trade Rumors does a Cub oriented "Free Agent Faceoff" comparing former Cubs pitcher Matt Garza to the free agent many of us hope the Cubs will sign, Masahiro Tanaka. Of the people polled, 2/3 prefer Tanaka.
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