With the trade deadline looming the Cubs are still in a position to deal off some equity for parts. The returns at this point are unlikely to be anything major but there’s still moves to be made that could clear out some roster space.
A quick note on David Price since Ken Rosenthal dropped the “Cubs should trade for Price RIGHT NOW” bomb; It’s not a prudent move right now. You’ll see a lot of these stories show up around the deadline, most of them are thought exercises much like this is a thought exercise. I just, wouldn’t do it.
So, let’s take a look at who may be buying and whether they match up well with the Cubs.
Needs – Starting Pitching
Equity – Lots of arms
Analysis – From an outside perspective the Orioles have something that the Cubs could really use in young and talented arms. Dylan Bundy’s pedigree and ability makes him a valuable commodity even coming off of Tommy John surgery and Hunter Harvey is riding the prospect rocket ship to the top of rankings lists. I don’t think there’s a good match here, however. The Cubs don’t have the type of arm the Orioles are seeking to acquire, even if you squint on a good day Travis Wood isn’t anywhere near a TOR arm.
New York Yankees
Needs – Starting Pitching, any kind. 2B/3B. Long Term Shortstop.
Equity – Gary Sanchez, Aaron Judge and a buncha relief type prospects
Analysis – The Yanks are treading water and are in danger of missing the playoffs in back to back years. They’re carrying an old roster and they lost CC Sabathia for the season. Brian Cashman made a move to acquire Brandon McCarthy from Arizona but they’re still slated to give David Phelps important starts down the stretch in what can be a playoff chase. Add in the fact they’re whelling out Brian Roberts and Kelly Johnson at second and third and there could be a potential trade partner here. The Cubs have mid level talent to ship in the rotation and Luis Valbuena could be an attractive option for the Yankees. I don’t think they have the pieces to make a move for a shortstop in the Cubs system.
Toronto Blue Jays
Needs – JA Happ upgrade, 2B, maybe a bullpen arm.
Equity – Some bats, some arms.
Analysis – I suppose a Luis Valbuena trade would be interesting here but I’m unsure the Cubs have what the Blue Jays are looking for. I don’t think either Edwin Jackson nor Travis Wood are upgrades over JA Happ.
Needs – A RELIEVER
Equity – Fringe US Prospects and Venezuelan Lottery Tickets
Analysis – I can see a situation where the Cubs are willing to give up a reliever to get some equity back. It won’t be much as reliever trades don’t net very much even when a team is desperate like the Tigers. If Dombrowski feels that the price for Joakim Soria is too high he might come calling for the Cubs.
Needs – Maybe 2B
Equity – Not Much Left
Analysis – The A’s are the most complete team in baseball. I mean they COULD add Luis Valbuena here to solve their 2B issue but really it’s unnecessary.
LA Angels Of Anaheim
Need(ed) - RPs
Equity – Most of their top talent was emptied out in the Huston Street trade.
Analysis – We can nitpick the roster here. David Freese isn’t having a terrific season. I’ve seen the Hector Santiago movie up close and I don’t trust Hector Santiago down the stretch. As of right now their starting DH has all of 70 career plate appearances. But, this is a team that’s dealing with injuries. Colin Cowgill will return, ditto C.J. Wilson. If they wanted to be greedy they could target a bullpen arm but 1. Why? And 2. They don’t have much equity left so again they’d be targeting a setup man which returns us back to question #1.
Needs – Their Players To Play Better
Equity – Lots of arms and Jose Peraza
Analysis – There isn’t a match here in my mind. The Braves’ issues are all internal as they need guys like B.J. Upton to simply play better. I don’t believe in Tommy La Stella long term but I’m unsure if they’re willing to make that upgrade right now considering how well he’s playing.
Needs – Bryce Harper
Equity – Arms And Bats
Analysis – I don’t think there’s a match here either as the Nationals need Bryce Harper to play well and stay healthy. Their rotation is solid and Rafael Soriano’s dominance makes the bullpen look special.
St. Louis Cardinals
Needs – Starting Pitching And A Catcher Rental
Equity – A lot of shiny prospects
Analysis – The Yadier Molina injury hurts the Cardinals for the stretch run. They could use another starter in the rotation as well as they’ll be using Carlos Martinez and ? as the 4th and 5th starters. Michael Wacha will have a follow up MRI on his shoulder to see if he can start throwing again soon. That will determine a lot of what the Cardinals plan to do at the trade deadline. However, as you’ve probably noticed in previous write-ups, the Cubs don’t exactly have a good match for teams looking for starting pitchers and it’s unlikely that the Cubs would trade Welington Castillo.
Needs – 1B, Maybe RP
Equity – Lots of high ceiling high risk talent at lower levels
Analysis – The Brewers promoted Jimmy Nelson and inserted him into the rotation. To me that signified that they aren’t looking externally to address their rotation. They do need a 1B who isn’t Lyle Overbay/Mark Reynolds and they could use another reliever. Again, this isn’t a good match for the Cubs.
Needs – 2B
Equity – An even distribution of risk and floor guys
Analysis – Luis Valbuena has been a popular name on this rundown. I don’t think it’s a perfect fit and I’m stretching here.
Needs – SP
Equity – Young Pitching
Analysis – Much like the other teams in need of starters, I don’t think the Pirates match up well as trade partners with the Cubs. It’s likely they’ll go after AJ Burnett again rather than gamble on either Edwin Jackson or Travis Wood.
Needs – Relievers, David Price
Equity – JOC
Analysis – The Cubs could sell off a reliever here but the return would be low. The Dodgers have bigger fish to fry and anything the Cubs do have to offer, outfielders and Luis Valbuena, don’t link up with Dodger needs.
San Francisco Giants
Needs – Bartolo Colon?
Equity – Young arms
Analysis – I know you’re looking at the Bartolo Colon links and wondering if the Cubs could make a move here in dealing Jackson or Wood. I don’t see it as Colon has been serviceable and has a profile that can work in San Fran. It’s 2014, and I’d rather have Bartolo Colon over Edwin Jackson and Travis Wood. Weird.
Filed under: Analysis