Zach Rosscup is the Pitching Prospect in the Matt Garza Deal

The Chicago Cubs and Tampa Bay Rays finalized the Matt Garza deal today, and the mystery pitcher in the deal is young Zach Rosscup, the Rays’ 28th round pick in the 2009 Draft (shrug), and he pitched very well (hooray) in low A ball last year (shrug) as a 22 year old (double shrug). He could become relevant a couple years down the line, but for now, he gets a big ‘ole – you guessed it – shrug.

That puts the deal in the books as Chris Archer, Hak-Ju Lee, Brandon Guyer, Robinson Chirinos and Sam Fuld for Matt Garza, Fernando Perez and Zach Rosscup.

This will take a moment to digest.

Brett Taylor is the editor and lead writer at Bleacher Nation, and can also be found as Bleacher Nation on Twitter and on Facebook.

51 responses to “Zach Rosscup is the Pitching Prospect in the Matt Garza Deal”

  1. Mike S

    I agree that Hendry has done well with “Throw ins”. Left-handed pitcher who could become relevant in the future. But for now, the Cubs won this trade. Notice how I said “for now”. We won’t be able to tell until a couple years down the road when Archer and Lee come up. I will say this, Tampa Bay Scouting is tremendous and there’s a reason that they wouldn’t accept this trade without Archer and Lee in it. I’m sure the Rays wanted Brett Jackson but the Cubs were only willing to give up Guyer, who was their Minor League Position Player of the Year. Even though Garza is under control for 3 years and is a hell of a pitcher, I think that 2-3 years from now, the Cubs will be regretting this one.

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  3. DaveB

    Ace, I’ve been reading your posts since day 1 and you are one of the few people that I almost always agree with what you have to say regarding the Cubs, but this will have to be the first time that I disagree with you. From the beginning you have been very negative on the Garza trade, and I just don’t understand why.
    First off, you seem very low on Garza. I read your post regarding Wells and how is WAR suggests his 2010 was better than his ’09, and how is WAR was better than Garza. While I do take stock in some of the sabermatics stats, I don’t see how you can argue that Wells is a better pitcher than Garza at this point. Garza has averaged a 1.25 WHIP and ERA in the 3.8 range over the last 3 years against the likes of the AL East (last season, yankees and red sox were ranked 1 and 2 in runs). Garza may not be a true ace, but he is a great great pitcher who consistantly throws 200 innings each season. Any rotation in baseball would be lucky to have him as a 2-3 starter.
    Next, the prospects. People keep whining about how much we gave up, but did we REALLY give up that much?
    In my eyes, Archer was the toughest to let go. While hes on line to become a reliable ML pitcher, his ceiling is about that of Matt Garza. Do you really think Archer will someday be Ace calibur? At best, Archer can hope to develop into a 2nd or 3rd pitcher in the rotation, which is what Garza is right now. We traded a prospect with a ceiling of being a 2nd or 3rd starting pitcher in the rotation for a ML-proven 2 starter.
    Next, Lee. Obviously has the glove and D to play in the ML for many years, but the guy hasn’t exactly been hitting the ball all over the park, and he has less power than Sam Fuld (or Augie Ojeda, for that matter). Plus we already have Castro at SS, who is suppose to be our TRUE cornerstone. Are you really going to want to mess with his position down the road and move him away from where hes comfortable to a new position like 2B or 3B to clear room for Lee? That in itself would be a big risk.
    Robinson Chirinos had been playing well, but hes already 26 and theres no way he is going to overtake Soto anytime soon.

    While the Cubs have been burned in the past trading away prospects for a proven veteran (RE: Juan Pierre), its almost always happened when we traded away pitching prospects. Can anyone name me ONE cubs position prospect that was traded away in recent years and turned out being decent?
    All I can think about is: Patterson, Pie, Murton, etc.
    We get back a guy whose ML proven, has won games in the playoffs (including 2 victories vs. the red sox in the ALCS the year the Rays went to the World Series). And on top of this, HES ONLY 22! HES NOT EVEN NEAR HIS PRIME YET.

    1. DaveB

      TYPO EDIT: Garza is 27 not 22, but my point still stands. Hes still young and has not yet reached his full potential. He will help the Cubs rotation for MANY years to come, not just 2011.

    2. marc

      Josh Hamilton….but there were alotta factors involved with that one haha

  4. eryk

    Hendry has pretty much screwed this team over.

  5. art

    Ozzie smith couldn’t hit either. Garza is not 22, he’s 27. is he taking us to the WS? will he beat the Red Sox for us? many kids have had X ceiling and exceeded that. many had great ceiling and were flops. coming from the big Bad AL Garza should win 30 games in the weak NL. sorry i don’t agree with you.

    1. DaveB

      Right after I posted my original posted I added a reply edit that said hes 27 not 22, but that doesn’t change my point because hes still very young and not in his prime yet.

      And you disagree with my point but you give no evidence/argument as to why.

      “many kids have had X ceilings and exceeded that.”- Ok, can you name me one Cubs position prospect that was traded away in recent years and ended up exceeding his ceiling? Who, Patterson? Pie? Murton? (Like marc mentioned there was Josh Hamilton, but he never even played in the Cubs minor league system and was given up due to the problems he had at the time outside of baseball).

      ‘Many had great ceilings and were flops’- Ok, just like Pie, Patterson, and Murton, right? (You actually helped my argument with this one).

      “coming from the big Bad AL Garza should win 30 games in the weak NL.”- Nobody ever said Garza would win 30 games in the weak NL Ive said all along hes not ace-caliber, hes more of a #2 in the rotation caliber, likely to win 15-20 games. If he can hold teams like the Yankees and Red Sox to a 1.25 WHIP and 3.8 ERA over 3 seasons, Ill take my chances that he can ATLEAST do that (and likely better) against the likes of the Cardinals, brewers, reds, and pirates.

  6. art

    is Rosscup funny? it would give us the funniest team in the ML’s. that’s what we have been missing, funny players, loosen up that clubhouse

    1. marc

      yea that would be better than aramis getting stoned before every game…and u wonder why he wears them shades on cloudy days haha…i will never forget when we were swept by the diamond backs…that last game at home…everyone on the cubs bench looked high as all hell…i wonder about these guys

  7. art

    if Castro were (position) moved, and if he couldn’t handle it, Cubs are in trouble.

  8. me

    FIRE JIM FOR THIS ATROCITY OF A TRADE

  9. Cheryl

    We won’t know until later whether this was a brilliant trade or a bad one. I’;d like to see Rosscups and Perez in Spring training to get a better handle on them. Don’t forget, the roster is now at 38 for the Cubs. What else is in the works?

  10. CubSouth

    I believe this trade is a great argument among Cubs fans and Rays fans alike, but let’s look at this from a Rays fan perspective (not me). If we traded away Garza for good prospects in return, do you think we would be excited or calling for Hendry’s head? For now, we know what Garza can do, plus having done that in the very tough AL East makes it even more remarkable. Down the road, sure we may have let some talent go, but it’s not a proven fact just yet that we got the bad end of the deal. Plus, all the money coming off the books after this season, and with Garza and a good nucleus still there (minus Soriano), I would say we have a real shot at contender in 2012. Plus, 2011 won’t be such a comatose season. FA SP will be at a minimum the next couple of seasons, so getting Garza is a blessing and I’m really looking forward to what Cashner can bring to the table. I believe Hendry’s fate lies in this upcoming off season, a hero or a zero. He can come out of it looking like the Red Sox this year or the Angels.

  11. CubsFanatic

    Say goodbye to Hendry guys. No way does Ricketts let this go if Garza doesn’t absolutely dominate this year.

  12. roughriider

    I do not like the trade of so many prospects. I believe teams are better for building primarily through the minors and I looked forward to seeing Lee in the majors with the Cubs. By some accounts Lee will be a star shortsop at some point. The rest are probably, at best, prospects who could be good major league players but not stars. The Cubs are loaded with pitching prospects so trading Archer doesn’t concern me. Garza has proven to be a good starter in the Major Leagues so is obviously worth more than a prospect or a couple good prospects. A lot of major league pitchers seem to have an a appifany at 28 and become the players they were projected to be or better. I hope Garza is one of them. But, he could also be one injury away from being a Mark Prior or Rich Harden you just don’t know.

    I’ve said it before that I believe the Cubs have been doing a good job of scouting and of obtaining better prospects than they have since Dallas Green left. I trust that they are making scouting a priority and that they will not be hurt as much as we may think by this trade. I believe that Jim Hendry is working to make the organization better. I will reserve judgement on whether this trade is a good trade or not.

  13. roughriider

    If Cashner can’t break into the starting rotaion or if the Cubs need to let pitchers such as Silva and Gorzelanny enhance their trade value he should be starting at Iowa not relieving.

    1. eryk

      Good idea as long as cashner ends up in the rotation, keep him in the rotation a AAA to refine his stuff trade gorz and silva bring him up with chris carpenter or some other prospect.

  14. roughriider

    A lot fo Cub fans remember when Dallas Green was the GM of the Cubs. Some very sad news has come to my attention. In the cowardly shooting in Tucson a young 9 year old girl named Christina-Taylor Green was killed. She was the grandaughter of Dallas Green. Please pray for the dead and injured and their families.

    http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/phillies/113159109.html

    1. Raymond Robert Koenig

      Puts baseball in perspective.

  15. eryk

    Our rotation should go Garza, Dempster, Z, Cashner, Wells

    1. Philoe Beddoe

      I am greedy…I would like to see the Cubs add one more experienced RHP to the pen..just in case the ‘remote’..’ never gonna happen’… ‘not in a million years’..’Haley’s Comet twice in the same year’..chance that Kerry Wood spends some time on the DL this year.

    2. CubsFanatic

      Problem with that is they are all right handed. The rotation should go Z, Garza, Gorz, Dempster, Cashner in my opinion.

      1. Mike S

        Dempster, Garza, Zambrano, Gorzaleanny, Wells

        Bullpen: Marmol, Wood, Marshall, Cashner…

  16. curt

    amen roughriider, its avery sad day fr dallas green and his family and all of the families affected by that coward, my prayers are with them and i hope the rest of the cubbie nation as well.

  17. Mike Brumley
    1. Dave B

      Great article, with the most important point being:

      “Yes, maybe Chris Archer or Hak-Ju Lee was the best prospect in the Cubs’ system. But given the current lack of elite talent in the respective systems that is exactly why now is the time to trade them. ”

      Archer and Lee were both good prospects, but they weren’t your slam-dunk guaranteed type of prospects. Think back to Patterson, Pie, even Murton. Ill be the first to admit I held those prospects in the highest regard, only to watch them collapse.
      Henry waited out basically every single one of our prospects in the past (when there were trades for ML-proven players on the table), until they burned out with the Cubs and had zero value (aka traded to the Orioles). This time, Hendry realized that, while Archer and Lee both had great upside, nobody is going to argue that these guys are going to be superstar phenoms. Archer has good stuff but has control problems (haven’t we heard that one before, Rich Hill?) who is at best projected to be a middle of the rotation starter. Lee is known for his glove but like someone mentioned earlier, he still made a shit ton of errors, bat is nothing special and has zero power. At best projected to be an everyday shortstop in there because of his D. While I agree it would have been great to see Archer and Lee have a shot at success with the Cubs (Archer and Lee = Maybes), what we got back is of greater value for the team, which is a (proven) ML-top of the rotation (I didnt say Ace caliber, more like 2 spot) as well as protecting us from being burned in case Archer and Lee don’t end up panning out (because we’ve been burned oh so many times in recent years).

      1. philoe beddoe

        great article Brumley…I think the problem is we always have this notion that you are giving up your(insert position) of the future….position players are so much harder to project than pitchers…I have followed the Cubs closely since 1977…yes I am old, but not that old…and during that time look at the difference among homegrown Cub players-

        PITCHERS- Greg Maddux, Kerry Wood, Lee Smith, Carloz Zambrano, Jamie Moyer, Mark Prior( yes I included him), Carlos Marmol, Juan Cruz, Kyle Farnsworth, Ricky Nolasco, Kyle Lohse..and on and on

        POSITION PLAYERS- Mark Grace, Rafeal Palmeiro, Shawon Dunston, Jody Davis, Soto?

        point being, its hard(and not just for the Cubs) to develop homegrown hitters that can have lasting careers..there are too many variables…where as pitchers can ascend and succeed quickly….look at most Championship teams and there will only be a couple “homegrown” guys…so the odds of Hak-Ju-Lee being a solid MLB player are very long indeed..

  18. Steve

    Agreed. Off-season or 2011 will decide Hendry’s future.Personally, I think that he’s shown his abilities , and should be shown the door. And no, not to be replaced by Maddux. Get a proven winner in there.