Jeff Samardzija trade rumors starting early. Teams are lining up with the AL East out in front

Think of this as prelude.  The Cubs season has had a certain pattern lately as far as topics of discussions go.  Right about this time we talk draft, which is what we've been doing.  After the draft, we start talking about trade rumors.

But this year the rumors are starting early, at least as far as Jeff Samardzija goes.  First it was Jon Heyman, then it was Nick Cafardo, now Bruce Levine joins the fray.

It seems the entire AL East is interested right now and that should work to the Cubs advantage.  Not only can they get the best bid for Samardzija, but they may be able to offer one of the best consolation prizes in Jason Hammel.

But right now, the focus is on Samardzija and as I have mentioned in the past, the Cubs need to clean up on this deal.  He is better than Matt Garza, he has more cost control remaining, and the team that acquires will recoup a comp pick if they lose him.  In a similar situation, you may remember the rumor at the time that the Cubs were on the verge of acquiring Rangers top pitching prospect, LHP Martin Perez as well as the pre-concussion/eye injury Mike Olt, who was himself considered a top 25-35 prospect at the time.

I would expect the Cubs to demand something similar this time around -- that is, a couple of top near MLB ready prospects to headline and then perhaps a lower level prospect or two.  Factors such as his dominance, stuff, age, health, and durability should make him the top target for contending teams.

Blue Jays

According to both Heyman and Cafardo, the Blue Jays will be among the top suitors and they are a team that can offer all kinds of pitching, from the MLB ready Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez to intriguing Class A lefty Daniel Norris to a high ceiling/high risk arm like Alberto Tirado.  The Cubs need to get one of Stroman and Sanchez and possibly both.


Heyman's top team isn't the Blue Jays, it's the Yankees.  A deal with the Yanks isn't as clear cut.  The Cubs have shown interest In Manny Banuelos in the past and now that he is healthy he is starting to show flashed of his old self, when he was considered one of the top 25 pitching prospects in the game.  But his size (5'10, 155 lbs) and injury history make him a bit of a risk.  He could easily end up in the bullpen.  They also have C Gary Sanchez, but he has stalled at AA.  The Yankees best talent may be at the lower levels.  LHP Ian Clarkin, pure hitter 3B Eric Jagielo, and power hitting OF Aaron Judge.  Is it enough?  Not for me, not when the real talent is too far away and the upper level talent carries so much risk.


This is Levine's contribution, who says the teams are mutually interested in a deal,  The two teams worked on a mutually beneficial deal and with the Blue Jays off to a great start, the Orioles may be motivated considering they don't have an especially large window.  There's all kinds of options here and some opportunity to get creative.  Dylan Bundy is one of the top prospects in baseball when healthy but there are some questions beyond that.  I've heard conflicting accounts as to his coachability, which brings Trevor Bauer to mind.  Perhaps a change of scenery would be best for both sides.  Kevin Gausman is a pitcher the Cubs scouted heavily for the 2012 draft and while he is a ready to near ready starter with #3 potential, he is struggling now and the Orioles need immediate help.  Eduardo Rodriguez is a player whose name came up in the past and he has just 21.2 innings in AA so far with a 5.57 ERA but his peripherals indicate he will make progress.

I also want to bring up an idea that was bandied about this past offseason and that is the possibility of acquiring Matt Wieters.  The Cubs have a younger, more cost-controlled catcher in Welington Castillo but Wieters LH bat,  power, approach, and outstanding defense may appeal to the Cubs.  He is injured right now, which is more of a problem for the Orioles than it would be for the Cubs.  There is also the issue of re-signing the Boras client.  It'd be a risk on many levels, but Wieters may be a better fit for Castillo as the Cubs are currently constructed,  Just a thought.

Other teams mentioned here in the past and in Heyman's article include the Dodgers and Rockies.  The Dodgers are a good fit with OF Joc Pederson, SP Zach Lee, and Julio Urias -- but do they need SP bad enough to part with top prospects?  I'm not sure the motivation is there.  The Rockies are intriguing but if they don't headline the deal with Jonathan Gray or Eddie Butler then there isn't enough there to make a deal.

There could be as many as 8-10 interested teams, perhaps even more, that would be interested in adding Samardzija, so it wouldn't be surprising if a team not in this article ended up being the so-called "mystery team".

Whatever the case, the Cubs need to get top prospects in return with at least a couple of them ready to contribute by 2015.  They appear in prime position to do just that.




Filed under: Rumors/Speculation


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  • An idea I've been playing with involving the Blue Jays is taking on Ricky Romero and at least a portion of his salary. Even if the Jays are on the hook for $5 million a year, it'd probably be seen as addition by subtraction, or at least as a neutral move. It's not like any more damage can be done by putting Ricky in a new organization.

  • In reply to Jim Weihofen:

    Interesting. I have never been a big Romero fan but as long as it doesn't subtract from overall package, I'd be willing to take a flyer.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    That's all I'm saying. Sure, he was maybe a mid-rotation guy in 2011, but if you can grab someone like that as a throw-in just to get him out of Toronto, it's worth a shot. Best case scenario he finds his stuff and the Cubs have something. Worst case, he's done.

  • Loxas is saying that Shark is the Orioles complete focus right now. Wonder if they try to strike early?

  • In reply to Holy Cattle:

    They struck early last year to get Feldman. Maybe they do it again?

  • In reply to Holy Cattle:

    Let me see-Either Gausmann or Bundy is a must. Plus at least 2 others.

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    In reply to Holy Cattle:

    If I were the Orioles, or the Blue Jays or Yankees for that matter, I would make my best offer for Samardzija now when he has more than 20 starts left in a year in which the AL East is so winnable.

    My offer would go down in late July, especially for a starting pitcher, because it is tough to make a difference in 10 starts. It's a bit different with a position player who is going out there every day.

    But listening to GMs, most recently Alex Anthopoulos, teams just don't want to focus on trades to the point of making a deal until the draft is over. And then I guess it just takes a lot of time to get it done.

  • In reply to Gregory Shriver:

    You also have to consider the extra year he's under contract. It's a full season plus ten starts. Would love to see someone blow us away now though.

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    Hi John!

    Well written, as always, and it was nice to make your acquaintance in person on Saturday.

    It'll be very bittersweet for me if/when Samardzija is traded (certainly the most bittersweet of any trade so far under Epstein). He's a guy that's been with the organization since 2006, he's the last player on the team that was on the '07-'08 playoff teams, and he'll likely be an All Star pitcher in the next month. He's a guy I wanted to build around, especially considering the low traction on his arm, and it'd just be bitter to see him go. Of course, the sweetness comes from the potential return: A Bundy or a Gray in return would mitigate that bitterness substantially.

    That said, Samardzija is certainly pitching at his best right now, and there could certainly be a bit of regression coming; his LOB% is very high, his BAbip is low, and his K% is low. He's even lost velocity on both his four and two-seamers.

    So if a regression is coming (even if it is mild), Samardzija's stock won't be any higher than it is right now, and I anticipate a trade happening. I'd imagine even the Cubs FO didn't imagine he'd be pitching as well as he is currently doing.

    What will be your level of bittersweetness?

  • In reply to Chris Trengove:

    Ive followed Jeff since he was a Notre Dame Football recruit over 10 years ago. I had no idea that he would even had a chance to be a Chicago Bear, much less a Chicago Cub. My wife thinks he is disgusting with his long hair & cheesy facial hair & I use that to get under her skin. That is something I will miss. Oh & the fact he is a great pitcher factors into it too.

    My hope has always been to have him extended to a fair deal (for both sides) but he seems to destined himself to free agency (& I dont blame him). From a baseball ops standpoint, what you can get in the next month for him, selling high is the right thing to do.

  • In reply to Chris Trengove:

    It was nice meeting you as well Chris.

    I really like Samardzija and it will be bittersweet from me. They have to get a package similar to the one they would have gotten for original Garza deal that fell through (2 top MLB ready prospects) for me to be okay, otherwise it will be more bitter than sweet.

  • In reply to Chris Trengove:


    11 on a scale of 10. I can't fathom letting a kid like this leave... no matter how rich the haul. Shark continues to work on his craft; the results this year are, to me, proof that he's developed into a pitcher.

    No matter what we get back there will be no replacing the stuff, the character, or TWTW that Shark brings. I'll be sick to my stomach for a long time.

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    The best part of this is that teams have an additional incentive in the bidding, namely to keep Samardzija off of their opponents.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Yes indeed, Works on 2 levels,

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    I wonder if the Cubs are leaking stuff to create that sense of competition, giving, say, the Orioles the motivation to make a deal not only because they want Samardzija but making sure the Yankees and Blue Jays don't get him. That stuff used to go on all the time between the Red Sox and Yankees, so Theo is very familiar with it.

  • In reply to Gregory Shriver:

    They don't need to do that. Teams are all very close, competition is fierce, and Shark is pitching like an Ace. Throw in the fact that the acquirer is getting 1.5+ years of service at a cheap arbitration rate (for what you are getting) and a sure fire 1st round compensation pick to return some value whether you sign him long term or not...and the market has made itself.

  • In reply to Gregory Shriver:

    I wonder why we're not hearing about Boston as a partner yet? With Buchholz going backwards, and the ever-present risk associated with counting on Peavy and Lackey at their age, plus Doubrant a question mark as their #5, Shark would be a good get for them. They have tons of near major league-ready talent and high ceiling talent to deal from as well.

  • Yankees don't make sense as a partner. I don't think the Cubs can do a deal headlined by a bunch of kids at A or A+.

    A deal that starts with Gausman and Bundy is interesting though.

  • In reply to Ike03:

    I agree, the Yanks don't have enough assets to get Jeff. Plus we can't help them after they got Girardi and Tanaka. Would like to see them miss the playoffs again.

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    In reply to John57:

    excellent points, John. They went balls to the wall to keep both Joe G and Tanaka out of Chicago. I like Girardi, and I love Jeter, but I really want to see the Evil Empire finish dead last.

  • In reply to Mike Partipilo:

    So does life long Red Sox Fan Theo Epstein. But it's business, and the bottom line is the Yanks don't have the prospects to make the trade work.

  • In reply to Ike03:

    Hunter Harvey, although far away and just turned 19, would be a great "get" as well. Harvey + Bundy and another good spare part would go a long in the final throws of this rebuild. I've long thought the Orioles as a damn good trade partner so these rumors are exciting.

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    In reply to Da Ivy:

    Ohlman or Sisco

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    In reply to Ike03:

    Though I agree with John that the Cubs have to get back more than they did for Garza, I still think there is no way they get a top pitching prospect who isn't tainted in some way (unless it is somebody still three years away from the majors).

    For this reason, I think a deal involving Bundy could work. I would be shocked if the Orioles wouldn't do Gausman and Bundy today, but would the Cubs?

  • I continue to believe that Samardzjja should not be traded. He is is as good as any starter out there. He pitches for the Cubs in 2015, he will find it hard leave our up and coming or perhaps playoff team. An ace in the hand is worth two in the Bush.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    2 things. #1, how many long term big money deals for free agent pitchers turn out? People can talk about miles on the arm but he'll be 30 before the start of next season. You want to give a 30 year old a 6 years deal for 120 mil? #2, he's pitching like an ace for the first 2 months of this season. What if he goes back to being old Samardzija next year (a really good #3)?

  • In reply to Ike03:


  • In reply to Ike03:

    what is the worst thing that can happen if we sign Smardj to a long term deal? he regresses and becomes a number 3-4 on silly money - and what then? in 3-4 yrs cubs should have much higher revenues, they can easily afford him.

    and what if he goes on to be Hudson? or even only 70% of his "old age" production? whats wrong with having a veteran pitcher on the rotation to groom the Hendricks, Edwards etc? a face-of-the-organisation person, homegrown guy that all the young players look up to and rally around...

    i dont see any major risk in signing him long term. Cubs are not the freaking A's or Ray's to shed anyone who might become expensive...

    i hear NTC being show stopper, but i am sure that could be worked around as well

    dont understand the overall fan-giddiness over trading him.

  • In reply to Csanad:

    I don't think there's fan-giddiness about trading him. I actually think the more "casual" fans, or at least the ones who don't read all the blogs and have discussions here are probably angry about any Smarge trade talk. All they see is a guy who is pitching great and if we trade him we're sending up the white flag once again, and also sending up the white flag for next year too.

    If there's giddiness among the more hardcore fans it's because people have accepted that an extension will never get done for all or some of the following reasons: he wants an NTC, the Cubs and Shark are $25 million apart, he doesn't want to play here any more and be part of a rebuild.

    I think the third issue can be resolved by resolving the second issue, but the first issue seems to be the hang up. As several people have pointed out to me here and elsewhere, the NTC isn't just for Jeff, it's for any future free agent or drafted player. If the Cubs give one to Jeff they will not be coming from a place of power in future negotiations with other players.

    I do think however than an NTC in this situation shouldn't matter to Jeff. If the Cubs sign him for 5 years there are two likely outcomes over that time frame. Either a.) the Cubs are finally competitive and have no reason to trade him and he has no reason to want to be traded or b.) the rebuild gets stalled, the Cubs are still bad and the competitor in Jeff wants to be traded to a winner.

  • In reply to jorel1114:

    i think your last paragraph brings up a valid point. logically thinking NTC does not do any good to Jeff either.

    i wish we could really understand where the negotiations are, and not speculate on rumors... wishful thinking, i know

  • In reply to Csanad:

    The worst that can happen is the club get hamstrug with a bad contract like they did with Zambrano, Soriano, etc.

  • In reply to Ike03:

    3 things. #1, how many pitching prospects develop into impact starters. #2, how many impact starters are available via free agency every year, and what is the likelihood of the Cubs being able to attract them (see Anibel Sanchez, Tanaka, Darvish), all aggressively pursued by the Cubs, and still came up empty. #3, if Samardzija goes back into being a really good number 3, that is still likely more than whatever young starter they'd acquire would be able to do.

  • In reply to SenatorMendoza:

    Is Samardzija an impact starter? He's had 2 really good months. In his career, Samardzija's season high is 3 WAR. Zips has Samardzija projected as a 3.9 WAR player this year. 3.9 WAR would have tied him for 22nd amongst starting pitchers with Bartolo Colon. Right behind AJ Burnett and in front of Hideki Kuroda. Would you be happy if the Cubs signed AJ Burnett to a 6 year $120 million deal? Travis Wood had a 2.8 WAR last year the same as Samardzija. Where's the movement for the Cubs to sign him for $20-$22 mil per year for 5 years?

  • In reply to Ike03:

    The 22nd best pitcher in baseball isn't impact enough for you? You know there's 30 teams. Meaning he's a 1 or 2. I'd be extatic to sign Burnett to a 6/120 if he was 30 years old, Colon and Kuroda too.

    There is a significant difference between Travis Wood and Samardzija. Wood's 2.8 WAR season was pretty much maxing out his potential. Shark's 2.8 WAR last year was a mix of a tantalizing start of the season, and frustrating second half. While it is true that Shark might just be off to a great start and will flounder in the second half, there is a very good chance that he's just harnessing his potential that he's only shown in shorter stretches in the past.

    Seriously, what do you think the chances are that Stroman or Sanchez would end up being the 22nd best starting pitcher in baseball. BA just posted an article today showing how 20% of their top 100 pitching prospects are hurt. Syndergaard is going to see Dr. Andrew's and the outlook for Ventura in KC is looking grim.

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    In reply to SenatorMendoza:

    Beat me to it, and said it better than I did...

  • In reply to SenatorMendoza:

    The thing is, he wasn't the 22nd best pitcher in baseball, thats IF he hits his Zips projection this year. He was actually a 2.8 WAR pitcher last year good for 46th and his best career number is 3.0, good for 41st last year. People need to stop acting like we are talking about trading 26 year old Greg Maddux here.

  • In reply to Ike03:

    So you're saying he was essentially a solid #2 starter last year, despite the miserable second half. Still easily worth 120/6. This is the reality of pitching contracts. I know we're not talking about 26 year old Greg Maddux, but we are talking about a 1 or 2 starter, maybe a 2-3 if you're looking through turd-colored glasses, but a damn good starter regardless. On top of that durable, with a sprinkling of upside, which he seems to demonstrating quite effectively this season. How easy do you think it is to find a top 40/top 50 pitcher (which is really the low-end of what we are talking about), and what do you expect to pay them?

  • In reply to SenatorMendoza:

    You think its smart baseball to pay a pretty good #2 starter $20 million a year? The Red Sox don't have a single pitcher making over $16.5 mil. The Tigers have 1 pitcher making over $16 mil (Verlander). The Giants have 1 pitcher than makes over $11 mil a season (Lincecum and that contract has been terrible). The Cardinals have 1 pitcher that makes over $8 mil a season. Unless you have Yankees or Dodgers money, you can't spend that kind of money on a 2nd or 3rd starter.

  • In reply to SenatorMendoza:

    I think its smart to pay a 30 year old durable starter, who is finally tapping into his enormous potential, and leading Cy Young candidate close to 20 million dollars per. I'm not privy to what he's asking for. I do the Cubs additional year of control will help keep the term reasonable. I do not view him as a 2nd or 3rd starter. I can probably only name ~15 guys that I'd definitely want more than him (disregarding contracts). Kershaw, Grienke, Tanaka, Darvish, Scherzer, Verlander, Sale, Wainright, Cueto, Teheran, Felix, Hamels. There's a few more I'd have to think closer about but essentially, he's pretty well a number 1 to me.

    These guys don't grow on trees. They are very difficult to get. The Cubs tried very hard to get one each of the last 3 seasons. Darvish, Tanaka, Anibel Sanchez. Theo went to the mat for all of them, and struck out. Only the handful of conspiracy theorists think the Cubs didn't actually try hard to get them. And in each of those cases I think we can agree that they made significant bids. My concern is the Cubs will sputter and fail to replace the quality innings provided by Samardzija, in terms of prospects and luring an FA starter.

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    In reply to Ike03:

    AJ Burnett is what, 38? Right now, Samardzija is 13th among qualified starters in fWAR. Even if he finished 22nd in the league, how many "impact pitchers" are there in the bigs? Are you saying Colon wasn't an impact guy last year? If you honestly think Travis Wood is as good a pitcher as Jeff Samardzija, then I guess there's no sense in arguing.

    All that being said, I would love for them to give Shark 6/$120M. Obviously, you're paying for some projection at that price (which is the opposite of paying for past performance, which Theo has spoken out against repeatedly), but you're getting, at the very least, a horse that carry a tremendous load.

    On a little side note: I'd be willing to make a friendly bet that Samardzija produces more WAR per dollar than Max Scherzer will over the life of their next contracts.

  • In reply to Matt McNear:

    Samardzija has pitched over 175 innings once in his entire career. How can you be so sure you're "getting a horse that can carry a tremendous load"? Last year he had a good April and a great May and then fell apart as the innings piled up.

  • In reply to Ike03:

    Great, so he's got a fresh arm. He certainly goes pitches deep in games. Averaging over 6 1/3 per game. Over 6 2/3 this season.

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    In reply to Ike03:

    You're right, they shut him down at 174.2 innings in his first full season as a starter. And, IIRC, he was not falling apart as the innings piled up that season, he was pitching kind of like an ace when they shut him down.

    Regarding last year, the theory I believe (and it just as easily could have been innings piling up) is that he fell apart as the Cubs fell way out of contention and he was trying to go out there and throw the ball past everyone. He certainly looked, to me (and I'm no scout), like he was pressing and trying to do too much every time out, not like he was fatigued. I truly believe if we trade him (and ultimately I think we will) to a contender he will be an absolute beast on a good team. The very definition of a "big game" pitcher, if you believe in such things.

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    In reply to Ike03:

    This may be redundant, I think my first response got lost in cyberspace. The short version:
    You may be right, though I think the reason his season went to shit is he was constantly over-pitching and trying to do too much. in 2012, he was shut down at 174.2 IP and was pitching great at the time. I am a big believer in Shark, and I think he will be a monster on a contender (and I do think we ultimately trade him, and regret it).

  • In reply to Matt McNear:

    And if you want to talk about Burnett, say you signed him to a big money 6 year deal coming off his career best 5.4 WAR season. In those 6 years he would have given you 12.4 WAR (this includes the .2 WAR season accrued this season). Thats how you want to spend $20 mil a season? Thats terrible value.

  • In reply to Ike03:

    LOL @ the Ruben Amaro Jr.. lol @ the Byrd/Burnett contracts

  • In reply to Ike03:

    And if you traded Shark for Brian Matusz and Zach Britton 4 years ago that's worse value despite them being top 20 pitching prospects.

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    In reply to Ike03:

    I didn't say I wanted to spend $20M/yr on Burnett ever. But, that career year was his age 31 season, his career walk numbers were significantly higher than Samardzija's have been as a starter, and he pretty much melted down under the lights of Yankee Stadium, and still produced 12.2 WAR in the hypothetical first 5 seasons of this imaginary contract...not great value, but $8.2M/WAR (that's 12.2 wins in the first $100M of the contract) isn't THAT far off what wins are going for on the open market.

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    In reply to Ike03:

    The problem is, if you trade Samardzija and you don't make a play for a Scherzer and another arm this offseason, you're probably not going to truly contend for another three to five years (at least).

    I think the Cubs have a number of MOR guys coming up through the system, but they are still two or three years away and you're still going to need a one and a two or at least a couple twos. Where are they going to come from?

    Maybe you strike gold and get one in the Samardzija deal, but it's a crapshoot. Any big free agent signing is also a crapshoot, but I think it's a risk you have to take because it's hard to build a championship team strictly through the draft, mid-level free agents signings and trades.

    I know we've seen the A's and Rays do it, but when you (hopefully in the Cubs case) have some money to spend, I think you have to use it to enhance your chances.

  • In reply to Gregory Shriver:

    #1, the Cubs aren't going to contend anyway for at least a couple of seasons anyway. #2 if you don't get an ace this year, maybe you get one the next year. Saying its 3-5 years if Samardzija goes is pure speculation and doomsday prophesizing. If you are going to spend 100+ million on a player, do it when you are 1 or 2 players away from contending. You don't do it preemptively hoping that in a few years you can contend and the deal is worth it.

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    In reply to Ike03:

    Doomsday prophesizing? Not at all. I'm no Pollyanna, but if I didn't have hope I wouldn't be bothering with following the Cubs. I was just being realistic, and besides, if you guaranteed me that the Cubs would be perennial contenders in four years but that it would mean they would still stink for a few years more, I'd take it.

  • In reply to Ike03:

    The idea that the cubs can't afford to pay shark or handle his contract if there is slight regression going forward is just bunk. How can they expect us to believe they can afford Scherzer if they cannot afford Shark? And trading for prospects - sure, how well has that worked out (look back at John's article on that in the archives)? You will trade a commodity with a floor of #2-3 (a wold class athlete in comparison to a typical pitcher) for prospects who in many cases have yet to throw one pitch in the majors (floor of basically 0 career WAR) that you hope may one day pitch as well as Shark.

  • In reply to 104YearsofGlory:

    Its not that they cant do it, its that its dumb to do.

  • In reply to Gregory Shriver:

    This is in part why I like Nola at 1.4. Not that he could replace Shark or be an ace, but because he will likely be a fast mover and fill a MOR hole sooner rather than later.

  • In reply to Gregory Shriver:

    another thing that is a crap shoot.. is sustained success, or staying productive after 30.. its a 2 way street.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    It would make an interesting poll question.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I like that idea

  • Does Baltimore have a CB pick? Would be an add in of course and a deal would have to be done this week, so not likely.

  • I think Baltimore seems the best fit, they have some nice pitching prospects and see eager to deal. One way or the other, this should be wrapped up soon

  • John,

    What are you hearing on the status of negotiations between the Cubs and Shark?

    My first choice would be to keep him and have him sign an extension, but I understand the trade scenarios, as well.

    the Cubbies have to get this one "right" if they decide to trade him. I'm talking a Joe Carter or young Adam Wainwright type of return.

  • In reply to DetroitCubFan:

    The biggest hang up seems to be the NTC.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    That's a tricky one. Would you do it, John or anyone else, if that meant a deal?

    At this point, I offer Samardzija six years, $120 million, and a NTC.

    I would have never said this a year ago, but the Cubs are starting to take shape, he's proving himself as a No. 1 or high-level 2, and perhaps most importantly, this guy looks durable at a time when everybody else's arm is falling off.

    Hope I didn't just jinx him.

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    In reply to Gregory Shriver:

    If I could get around the NTC by throwing money at it, I would (6/$125-128?). But, if not, I'd do it for all the reasons you mentioned.

  • In reply to Gregory Shriver:

    I don't think I would. If you could do it in a vacuum, maybe, but it might open up a can of worms the Cubs would rather avoid.

  • Not really Cubs news, former Cubs news, but I am in Seoul, Korea and watched Chang-Yong Lim pick up the save for Samsung Lions tonight.

  • Thanks for the update. I like Lim. Wish it could have worked out better for him here.

  • Trade Hammel for a package around young arms who are close to MLB ready.

    Draft Rodon when he falls to us (hope?) or Nola if he doesn't.

    Sign Shark.

    You now have Shark, Wood and Arrieta with CJ, Hendricks, Johnson, Hammel trade prospect,Rodon Nola all within 1-2 years away to filling in back end.

    That also doesn't include signing a FA this off season.

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    "When the Cubs and Blue Jays discussed a Jeff Samardzija deal this offseason, the Cubs asked for Drew Hutchison plus either Aaron Sanchez or Marcus Stroman, Ken Rosenthal reports. Especially in retrospect, that would have been a steep price to pay — Hutchison has been terrific in the Jays’ rotation so far this year, and while Sanchez has struggled with walks at Double-A New Hampshire, Stroman continues to look like a top prospect. The Jays are not likely to pursue Samardzija again this summer." (posted May 24)

    I doubt this is accurate but Ken Rosenthal is closer to the action than me.

    My best case scenario is Samardzija & Hammel for Hutchinson, Stroman and Sanchez. Is there anyway in hell Toronto agrees to that? Toronto gets an ace and they get a #4 that has pitched well in the AL East.

  • In reply to Daniel Rosenberg:

    That is pretty much what I would expect them to say. The last thing they want is a bidding war. They're trying to keep the perceived price down,

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    the interesting thing to me was hutchinson was named in the article. I had never heard of him before but a 3.50 ERA for a 23 year old sounds good. Do you think there is anyway we get Hutchinson + Stroman + Sanchez? I would love to end the month of July with some high quality pitching not on the DL.

  • In reply to Daniel Rosenberg:

    We have talked about him in the past when the Cubs were first considering trading Garza to the Jays. #3 type pitcher, good fit for Wrigley.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    When you say "good fit for Wrigley" what do you mean, specifically? What attributes would you look for in a pitcher if you were the FO?

  • In reply to Daniel Rosenberg:

    Hutchison was coming on like gang-busters 2 years ago. He had a really nice run at AA, and Klaw was all over him, more so than Drabek and Alvarez, who were up and comers with the Jays. His stretch with the Jays was okay considering his age, but then he got hurt. I think it would be incredibly unlikely the Cubs would be able to acquire him and one of their top pitching prospects, let alone 2 of the top prospects. In the offseason it would have been possible, because he still hadn't shown how he'd bounced back from surgery, but at this point. It will not happen.

  • In reply to SenatorMendoza:

    Hutchison had shown he was fully healthy and pitching very well in October of last year during the AFL. Both the Cubs and Jays knew what they'd be giving/getting.

  • In reply to Quedub:

    You're right. He did show enough. And that's probably why a Hutchison-Sanchez deal would have been nixed by the Jays. I just meant people seem to think that Hutch is on the table as part of bigger trade with pitching prospects now. And there is 0 chance of that now, despite Samardzija's great start. The Jays are counting on Hutch. Trading him plus a near ready pitching prospect for Samardzija is essentially robbing Peter to pay Paul. It still leaves their rotation thin, and you just lost a prospect.

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    In reply to Daniel Rosenberg:

    No chance. For me, Sanchez has to be in the deal because I don't want to be rolling the dice on another undersized guy who likely will end up in the bullpen.

    But honestly, I see no circumstances in which the Blue Jays deal Sanchez even straight up. He's untouchable for them.

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    In reply to Daniel Rosenberg:

    If the Cubs insist on Sanchez, which I expect they are, the Jays aren't listening. That might be where they are coming from.

  • In reply to Gregory Shriver:

    I kind of doubt this. The Jays actually have a chance this year. They may not want to trade him, but in order to get the caliber of pitching they'll need to make a run, sacrifices will need to be made. Their window is closing soon. Bautista is getting older, contract has 2 more years, Encarnacion has 2 more years too. Dickey and Buehrle have probably 1 more productive year left. The Jays need to make move.

  • Trade Jeff and Hammel for the best packages ASP. They have to
    include can't miss prospects and he can even include some of
    our non-top prospects in both deals

  • John, what do you think the odds are that Shark is a member of the Cubs on Aug. 1?

  • In reply to Jimmy Greenfield:

    I am going to say 25%. Someone has to have a last minute change of heart for them to re-sign him.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    So you're telling me there's a chance...I hear ya...

  • In reply to YouCannotBeSerious:

    That line makes me laugh every time. Never gets old.

  • I just don't understand trading Shark. All of the players mentioned in this article have question marks and are unproven, and best case scenario is that one of them develops into someone just like Samardzija. I get the cost-controlled thing, but not from a large market like the Cubs. Signing him long-term as he is in his prime makes too much sense. I worry that the Cubs are out-smarting themselves here.

    Let's fast-forward to 2015 when the Cubs are competing for a playoff spot and make a trade for a TOR pitcher like Samardzija... and they trade away a load of prospects. I think of John's frustration with former Cubs GM Jim Frey and hope we don't have to see that.

  • In reply to IThrewSomeRocks:

    Depends on the prospect return. Keep in mind the Cubs won't do it unless the return has some near MLB ready players, with less risk involved. Based on the way this year is going, if next year we are fighting for the playoffs and make a trade, so be it. This is something that nobody can say for certain. It's all about the return. I want them to keep him too but everyone is tradable and his value couldn't get any higher than right now. Even if David Price is made available, Shark will still demand a ton of high quality prospects.

  • In reply to IThrewSomeRocks:

    What if Shark doesn't want to stay?

  • In reply to djriz:

    i am sure the Cubs can show him a few million reasons to stay

  • In reply to Csanad:

    Sure money talks, but do you pay him that much more than you value him? Is he the guy you break your 'no no-trade clause' rule for?

  • In reply to djriz:

    He has no choice until 2015, so who cares what he wants. He will thank us when he has
    a big ass World Series ring ta show the women on the road.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Of course we care what he wants. He doesn't have to sign if he doesn't like the terms. If we don't trade him, we get a draft pick. Big deal. If the Cubs don't want to meet his terms, trade him now. His value may ever be higher.

  • In reply to djriz:

    I say that the Cubs go for it next year. With Arismendy, Javier, and Kris added to Castro Rizzo, Castillo, Valbuena, Lake, and others they should be close, but we can't trade our big Kahuna.

  • In reply to IThrewSomeRocks:

    Pretty simple. Trade him for prospects, use the money he wanted to sign a similar player to him.

    Prospects + Shark-like player>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Shark

  • In reply to IThrewSomeRocks:

    Shark has shown he can be a TOR starter for stretches, but he has also had 2-3 month stretches where he is getting hit hard and is, at best, a #3 (see June-August 2013). If we knew for certain (i) he has now become a steady TOR/#2 and (ii) would remain so for the length of his contract (despite getting mid-30s, where power pitchers may lose some stuff), then it is closer to a no-brainer to re-sign him.

    Personally I believe that both #1 and #2 will not happen, so I want to trade while the iron is hot.

  • I am thinking that a Hammel to the Yanks trade soon would be in good order. There is a good possibility that he regresses now that the weather is heating up and the Yankees may be interested to get a deal done early. I think Samardzija's price will continue to rise.

    i would really like to see the Dodgers get in the mix with Pederson and a pitcher, but we would probably need an injury to occur in their rotation for that to be realistic.

  • John,

    This is a SCARY MOMENT for me and all of Cubdom.

    For the Present: It's another step back for the current team. We'll lose our best pitcher and replace him with ????? someone we promote from the Minors..,like who is ready and deserving.??

    For the Future: We get a few guys who will be ready for a call-up maybe mid-next year, maybe the year after. Risk is, if he turns out like Olt is turning out, you've wasted a year or two more and the PR hit Cubs are gonna take could be Brutal.

    Overall: This is Theo's BIG MOMENT.., whatever he does. This is trading one type of ACE Potential to try to acquire another type..,a guy who is pitching at the Ace Level but older, for a guy or two who MAY pitch at the Ace level in 2-3 years so the kids around him can grow up.

    This is high stakes poker alright. Hope we end up truly HOLDING THE ACES!

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    In reply to rakmessiah:

    You are right on. This is a very defining moment for Team Theoyer.

  • In reply to rakmessiah:

    Hendricks deserves his crack at a chance to start for the MLB club. He has a "better than advertised" 3.21 ERA to this point in 9 games at AAA and is averaging a K per inning and more than 6 innings per game. Being that he turns 25 this year, it would be interesting to see how he can perform at the highest level, considering to this point it almost seems like he has been punching above his weight in the minors when you consider his tools versus production.

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    In reply to rakmessiah:

    You are right. A year from now we're are going to start hearing talk about a Theo and Jed extension, maybe as soon as this offseason.

    I assume this will happen regardless, but what happens between now and then should give us an indication as to whether the Cubs are on the cusp.

    In addition to the questions about the rotation and building a championship lineup, the next year should also tell us whether the renovation is charging forward with the promise of more dollars to spend. And what will be the outlook of the TV/radio deals?

    So it's not just on Theo and Jed's end. It's across the board.

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    In reply to rakmessiah:

    I'm guessing Chris will shake off the Rusin if Samardzija is traded.

  • Off Topic:

    Looks like I'll be on The Game 87.7 at around 1:40 again.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Live Video/Audio Feed at:

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Thanks GD.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Good job John. I'm surprised they didn't ask you about the upcoming draft, but overall a good interview.

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    In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    I was, too.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Thanks. Maybe as we get closer I'll get another chance.

  • a huge step back from what? we seem to be on pace for another 90+ loss season.. there is no step back - even with his great pitching he has 1 win.. its not even guaranteed Baez and Bryant come up for good till the end of next year.. trading samardzija is not a step back with this current team..

  • In reply to CubfanInUT:

    Exactly. With a replacement level pitcher the Cubs have at most 1 more win this year without Samardzija. Starting pitching isn't, and hasn't been the Cubs problem. Look at all of the guys they've traded for/grabbed of the scrap heap that have been good to great for the Cubs (Wood, Maholm, Baker, Arrieta, Hammel). You can find adequate starting pitching. The Red Sox won a World Series last year with 1 starter with a WAR higher than 3.2.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to CubfanInUT:

    I think his point isn't so much that the team is taking a step back in the W/L column, but instead a step back in the talent a known commodity for the risk of unknown/unproven's a tricky balance bc, as has been mentioned countless times by other posters, TOR pitchers are uniquely rare....while I don't think Shark is a true TOR pitcher (he's pitching out of his mind right now), he is certainly a quality #2 or high end #3...the argument, as I see it (and what do I know, I'm just a financial analyst that loves baseball), is that we currently have a solid starting rotation, a solid bullpen, and a poor offense with loads of help coming next year...strategically, it appears that we need OF help (at least 2 MLB level OFers, assuming Lake can continue putting up his current slashes) and Baez and Bryant to lock down 3B and 2B....however, if we trade Shark and Hammel we now have uncertainty back in our starting rotation, creating more risk...I am still in favor of trading Shark, but only bc I fully expect him to regress...similar, but not as drastic, to Dempster and Garza the last couple of years...

  • In reply to cking6178:

    well thats how you improve your team.. you trade players for multiple pieces back.. you do that enough, among those plethora of pieces, turn into players who can contribute to the team.. like Ramirez, Grimm, Arrieta and Olt etc etc.. you keep adding multiple pieces you gradually improve the overall talent of the team/play.. its a numbers game.. we get enough players to make us decent.. then add a Bryant/Baez to make us good.. then we can worry about spending big money on Free Agents to fill in the missing pieces to make us great.. Keeping 1 great Samardzija does little to nothing for this team. 1 Samardzija for 2-3 decent/good players makes the cubs better in the grand scheme of things

  • I agree with a lot of the comments here. Why trade him? He is having one of the better seasons by a cubs pitcher in recent memory. He's young, and has a live arm. Also he has the attitude that embodies the city of Chicago. The guy is pure fire every time he steps on the field. We need more guys like him in the Chi!

  • In reply to Goody55:

    in current baseball terms he really isnt "young" . 30 is seen as the typical tipping point for players to start to decline.. spellcheck is 29 and the team itself is probably still 2 yrs away "at least" from being a playoff contender.

  • fb_avatar

    Have to think a lot of these teams are hold off on making a deal, hoping for Shark to have 2-3 bad outings and hoping that gives them some leverage to bring the price down. Not gonna happen. The risk they take is he keeps pitching lights out, raising his price with every outing.

  • I myself would hate to see Shark go, he has become and ace and ace we have been wanting for a while . He brings more that talent to the table, he brings passion, a crazy competitive nature and most of all character. And that, there is nothing more valuable than character. He is a guy you want pitching for you in the playoffs and world series. He is a young 29, balls of steel and why trade him at all. Maybe if there is a package bugger than we got for Garza but whoever we get in return better have bigger nuts,guts and character than our boy Shark.

  • Jeff will not sign a new contract before the end of the season. His
    trade value will be much less in Dec. than in late July

  • Reason 5,342,109 that this comment board is awesome: Everyone recognizes how good Samardzija is despite him having just one win.

  • In reply to John Arguello:


  • I completely understand people not wanting to trade JS. He is doing a great job on and off the mound. That being said, it takes 2 to tango. If JS really wanted to be a Cub for life, it would have happened by now. The FO is doing the best thing for the future of the team. It may stink right now for us fans but, in reality, as good,as he has pitched, the team has won only 2 of his starts. Losing him won't be the end for this team. It may be the end of losing all the time in the future.

  • If it is invertible that Samardzija is traded, why not for a position player along with either a MLB ready pitcher or a low level pitcher with high upside. The position player hopefully is already in the ML or at minimum ready to advance

  • i dont like the yankees as a fit, they would really have to overpay considering the guys the cubs are looking at are all so far from the bigs.

    i like toronto as a fit and i love baltimore so for me it comes down to what these two teams can offer.

    i dont think either will give up their top 2 guys (stroman and sachez, bundy and gausman) so if it comes to the point where one of them is willing to do so i think thats when the trigger should be pulled.

    i think that both teams will be willing to give up one of their top 2 guys, so the focus for me is on what else they can give up.

    toronto has norris, tirado, davis, nay, barreto and lugo. sachez or stroman plus a few of those guys is a pretty good package.

    baltimore has rodriguez, harvey, berry, hart, sisco (i like sisco quite a bit) and tarpley.

  • This is pretty unrealistic, I get it. But the Yankees have major league pieces that they aren't using/don't need right now that might interest the Cubs.

    How about Ivan Nova? Out for the season so he's not helping the Yankees this season. 3.10 ERA with a 3.47 FIP, 54% GB, 0.5 HR/9, 7.5 K/9, 2.8 BB/9 all at only 26 years old last season. He's the main piece to me.

    Another interesting piece to me that is expendable to them is Brett Gardner. Signed at a reasonable price until 2018 with and option year. They have Soriano, Ichiro, Beltran, and Ellsbury (to replace him in CF) who can man the OF plus the DH. So there's some redundancy for them there which makes him expendable. He's LH outfielder, which is a big hole in the Cubs roster. Not to mention he is a top of the order guy with speed and a fantastic approach at the plate.

    Throw in Banuelos, Betances, or Clarkin.

    I'd take Nova, Gardner, Betances over anything more risky. Mostly because I am 100% in the keep Shark bandwagon for innumerable reasons. He's the type of player the FO needs in Chicago.

  • In reply to nmu’catsbball:

    Yankees need to bring in a third team into the mix if they want Samardzija. They should go after Hammel otherwise.

  • fb_avatar

    The asking price for Shark last season and before the season according to rumors were Justin Upton and Jason Heyward from the Braves, Aaron Sanchez and Marcus Stroman plus some from the Jays, and Archie Bradley and Tyler Skaggs. That was before his huge start so what makes everyone think the Cubs won't ask for the same or more. Maybe what the asking price was before is now the offer they could actually get. Seriously. I honestly can see a Shark and Castillo trade to the O's for Gausman, Bundy, and Wieters. With the interest, his start, and using the previous asking price how is this not at least possiable?

  • In reply to Sean Chapin:

    The catcher for catcher swap makes sense on paper but not in action. If I'm a contending team with a decent rotation, I'm Never going to trade the guy who has been managing my pitching staff all season and start again from square one as far as pitcher-catcher relationships with a month and a half until the post season. Potential of being disastrous.

  • In reply to Sean Chapin:

    I agree. Cubs will ask for a ton in return and they might just get it.

  • No to the Yankees, unless they want Edwin Jackson, Barney, Jeff Baker, Wright, Veras, eyc. They don't have the prospects to even get Hammel much less Shark, in my opinion.

    I hope the Cubs can play the Jays & Orioles against each other, and maybe to a lesser extent, the Dodgers & Rockies as well. However I don't want Sanchez as the centerpiece of a Blue Jays deal anymore. He as taken another step back with control this year, he's getting worse as he moves up. His K rate dropped to 7.82/per 9 at A+ ball and his walks went up to 4.17/per 9. Now in AA he has taken another step back with a 7.63 K's/per 9 and a whopping 6.33 BB's/per 9 - That scares the heck out of me. I don't think he is ever going to be TOR starter, but more like E.Jackson #3 who is inconsistent from start to start. Also Toronto really needs a 2nd baseman and relievers as well, I'm thinking they go for a bigger package of multiple players.

    Toronto gets: Hammel, Bonifacio, & 1 (or 2) of Schlitter, Strop, Veras, Wright, Russell (Grimm & Parker too depending on the deal)

    Cubs get: Stroman, Norris, Nolin, Tirado
    Orioles get - Shark

    Cubs get: Bundy or Gausman, Rodriguez, Harvey OR Bundy and Gausman
    Rockies get: Shark

    Cubs get: Butler, 35th pick, Dahl, McMahon
    Dodgers get: Shark

    Cubs get: Pedersen, Seeger, Anderson OR Pedersen, Urias, Lee, Anderson
    Unfortunately LA doesn't really have any top pitching talent. Lee is a #4 starter as he throws low 90's and has no out pitch and Urias has projection but he is a 5'10", 160 lbs, 17 year old in A ball so I would rather take the 1st deal.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Who says it has to be prospects though? Why not Ivan Nova and Brett Gardner plus a prospect or two?

  • In reply to nmu’catsbball:

    Nova is hurt and Gardner is old.. we want longterm assets

  • In reply to nmu’catsbball:

    Gardner will be 32 next year and he is signed through 2019 on an expensive contract with 26 Homers for his career total, and he is not the base stealing threat he once was, so why would the Cubs bail the Yankees out on what is sure to soon be a bad contract...and give them our ace pitcher to boot! Not going to happen. Shark doesn't have much mileage on his arm and still has 5-6 years of prime pitching ahead of him. In his 3rd year of starting, Shark's production is living up to his talent/projection as he seems to have figured it out. Whether he has or hasn't long term, as long as he keeps pitching like an Ace up until he gets traded, then the Cubs will get a hual for him, as an Ace pitcher is the rarest and most valuable commodity in baseball. Tack on his 1.5+ years of cheap arbitration cost control and a 1st round compensation pick if the acquiring team doesn't sign him long term and the Cubs should get a very good package of top prospects.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Toronto would have to drop like 3 guys from their 40 man roster to do that deal. Never going to happen. I don't think they would want Bonifacio back either. They released him last year.

    I can't see getting 3/4 of the Orioles pitching prospects. The second option might be more feasible, but even that might be too much for them to swallow. Depends how desperate they are/how big they feel their window is. They may be the team most likely to overpay.

    Colorado deal seems fair to me.

    Don't see any way the Dodgers deal both Pederson and Seager. They have an aging roster and may need to replace the left side of their infield (and potentially 2/3 of their OF) soon. I don't see Seager being available in any deal. For as much money as they have, they are going to need cheap players at some point, especially if they end up having to eat huge chunks of Kemp/Ethier contracts.

  • In reply to mjvz:

    The Toronto deal has 3 or 4 players going to the Jays (depending on the deal) - Stroman & Nolin are already on the Jays 40 man roster. So I don't think it's a big deal.

    As far as the Orioles, I'd rather have the Bundy & Gausman deal personally, but in Value terms the deals are equal. Gausman or Bundy = Rodriguez & Harvey. It's the value that matters not the quantity.

    I'm glad you think the Colorado deal is fair.

    Yeah, I don't see the Dodgers deal either, but they have more money than god and do whatever they want because they can always afford the free agents to don't put anything past them. They do not want to miss the playoffs no matter what and desperation can make you do crazy things.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    There is no chance the Jays give up that type of package for Hammel and Boni.

    Also, these pipe dreams about the Dodgers have got to stop. They have 0 need for a starter. You really think they cripple their farm for a Kershaw placeholder. I guess you could push Haren or Beckett out of the rotation eventually, but considering one has an ERA of 3.10 and the other 2.43, what's the need?

  • In reply to SenatorMendoza:

    As far as the Jays deal, I'll just say I disagree, especially if they get Grimm or Parker in the deal. I think you are undervaluing Hammel and their desperate need for a 2nd baseman like Bonifacio (yes I know he didn't do well their but he is obviously playing much better this year) but as I said, we can just disagree, and maybe I did make the return a bit too much, but not by a whole lot.

    As far as the Dodgers, as I responded above, I don't see the Dodgers deal either, but they have more money than god and do whatever they want because they can always afford the free agents to don't put anything past them. They do not want to miss the playoffs no matter what and desperation can make you do crazy things. Not to mention the fact that others are reporting that they might have interest, so it's not just me.

  • In reply to SenatorMendoza:

    Also consider this scenario, the Dodgers are currently 4.5 games back of the Giants, and Colorado is only half a game back of the Dodgers. The Dodgers payroll is gigantic, they can't miss the playoffs under any circumstances. Well if the Rockies have interest (as has been suggested) and they think that they could be on the verge of getting Shark and so little separating the teams for a possible final wild card spot, whose to say the Dodgers don't do something desperate to keep him away from the Rockies? Not saying it will happen but it's not so far fetched as you make it sound.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to SenatorMendoza:

    The Dodgers were a serious contender earlier this summer when they had concerns about Beckett. (Look at his FIP, he was living on borrowed time.) Of late, however, he has improved significantly and they are a much less likely partner.

  • While I too hate to see Shark traded, I think he wants to go to free agency and test the market. My opinion is they need to get a MLB player back, preferably a veteran slugger to play LF/provide some leadership/etc.

  • When does Shark qualify for his 10 and 5 NTC? Seems like the NTC should not be that big a deal for him. I'm guessing he's asking for it because he knows they won't give it to him. He wants to do the FA thing.

  • In reply to Oneear:

    5.5 years from now. He has about 4.5 years of service time. 1.5 years of Arbitration left and then Free Agency...but if he get's traded then he starts all over (obviously).

  • john is there a stat for getting robbed or line drives at players ? Because castro has been having bad luck all year.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to seankl:


  • In reply to SKMD:

    Thanks, and he just hit another line drive for an out.

  • We should resign him but since we probably won't I think the orioles would def be the best team to trade with. Bundy n Harvey along with another smaller piece or two would be my favorite package. But I'd look out for the jays more so then the Yankees considering they have two draft picks towards the front of the first round so if they load up on pitching in this draft I could definitely see them pulling the trigger with Sanchez and stroman. But orioles definitely seem the most intriguing. Its too bad teams can't trade draft picks. I don't really get that whole thing. Doesn't really make a whole lot of sense

  • fb_avatar

    baltimore just cleared a 40-man spot by outrighting Evan Meek. Just sayin'.

  • Keep Shark,..... Keep Hammell,.... but what do I know?


  • In reply to drkazmd65:

    Keep Hammel? Do you think the Cubs are going to the playoffs? Hammel is a free agent, if the Cubs want him next year they can offer him a contract when he becomes a free agent at the end of the year. Why wouldn't they get something in return for him this year though, not to mention it clears a spot to give guys like Hendricks, Jokisch, and Rusin a crack at the rotation in the second half so the Cubs can see what they have. Getting value for him now doesn't stop us from getting him later, they are not connected. Same thing with Shark, if he's not signing an extension, then you get a bunch of value in return by trading him to a team that will be in the playoff contention for the next year and a half. If Shark is still pitching like an Ace when he hits free agency at the end of the 2015 season, and the Cubs are on the rise, then maybe they can still come together on a deal, but he has more value to other teams until then.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    In fact, the prospects the Cubs get for Hamell and Samardzija this trade deadline should help the Cubs be a better team in the next year and a half, which might help convince Shark to sign with the Cubs in 2016.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    preach on brutha!

  • fb_avatar

    So, on another note: looks like the ICubs are going ahead with Alcantara's CF debut tonight!

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Matt McNear:

    ...aaannnd the start's delayed by rain.

  • lol.. Alcantara in the OF is the new rain dance.

  • John, how much of a savings could we get if we under-slot Hoffman? Could that be the way to go?... I mean he'd be 1 year behind but still 1-2 years ahead of high school guys... and I've heard this year has an abundance of high upside high school arms/over-slot types that we could get in rounds 2-4ish.

  • In reply to Rudy:

    Damn it! I keep going back and forth... 1st it was Turner,then Gordon, then Jackson, then Nola and now I'm thinking Hoffman.

  • In reply to Rudy:

    *aside from the top 3.

  • In reply to Rudy:

    Not John, but I don't think the cubs go Hoffman after the injury. I think a team like the Jays (who have two first rounders) take him.

    I'm as befuddled as you are on who I want the cubs to take. The more time passes, I'm leaning underslotting 1.4 and then pitchers en masse...then I think, "but what about Rodon or Jackson/Gordon?" And I start the cycle all over again. Damn, it's going to be exciting.

    I just have to add about Bryant. Yes, he went 4 for 4 with another HR, 2b, and BB...but...last hit was most "impressive" for maturity. Runner in first, Stars shift mid-pitch, and instead of trying to do too much, Bryant simply strokes a single oppo field into the gap. I'll admit it. The man-crush is already in full bloom. (I still think he needs time in AAA instead of Chicago)

    AA-Bryant-Baez-Olt in AAA gelling under Manny's tutelage? Yes, please!

  • In reply to Rudy:

    Hey Rudy, sorry just getting to his but I completely crashed. Law says the Cubs are still in on Hoffman, but I have my doubts on that

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I wouldn't hate this strategy at all. Hoffman would have to take at least $1-2MM less than slot at 1.4 because he has zero leverage. He won't make it back in enough time to pitch competitively before next year's draft. The Cubs would have leverage because even at the reduced rate he would likely make more than any team below us would offer.

    Consider that at 1.4 the slot is $4.62MM this year. By the time you get to Jays at 1.10, just six picks later, the slot is already down to $2.97MM, and there's no way a team is going to pay freight for him either given the injury and lack of leverage. Let's also acknowledge that the Cubs should be able to get a good idea from Hoffman's agent if he'll agree to the below slot number ahead of time.

    If they can pull this off they'll be free to target any signability guy who slips to the second and/or third rounds. An extra $1MM or $2MM is a lot play around with after the first 30 picks.

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