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There are surely some parallels or clever scripts or something like that here, but I’m not sure I’m able to make them. I’ll try.

It looks like the Baltimore Orioles are about to trade first baseman Derrek Lee (former Cub, traded last year in August after previously refusing to accept a trade) to the Pittsburgh Pirates (a team that had inquired about the availability of current Cub first baseman Carlos Pena, but was refused) for an A-ball outfielder, according to the Baltimore Sun. The Orioles are going to include about $4ook to help cover the remainder of Lee’s 2011 salary.

Lee, a free agent after the season, has fallen off quite a bit this year. He’s hitting just .248/.306/.409, which is his worst line since he was a 21-year-old rookie. Lee turns 36 in a month, and, in the post-steroid era, this is what tends to happen to players as they turn 34/35/36. Take note.

As for Pena, the door was almost completely closed on a deadline deal as it was, but with the Pirates out, only the Diamondbacks remain as a previously-discussed landing spot. And that’s looking like the longest of long shots.

An August deal, after Pena clears waivers, remains possible.

  • Zach

    I just don’t understand the reasoning to not trade Pena, to me there is no negative in trading him. The Cubs could still resign him if they wanted to.

  • MichiganGoat

    It’s only been a few hour and your out of wit? When I wake up tomorrow I think the posts may read like this “ME TIRED, TRADE NO, ME LIKE PRETTY LIGHTS, ME CUB NO HAPPY”. Man this may be worth every penny.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Ha. Not so much out of wit (see, for example, the upcoming Hour Six post, which should be up in about 30/40 minutes). I think I’m just really, really frustrated that the Cubs didn’t deal Pena, and seeing the Pirates settle for Lee instead is just a slap in the grapes.

  • Jer

    Pirates fan here, my question is did you guys wanna get rid of Carlos Pena or what’s the deal? Did you guys wanna land Gorkys or something?

    As for myself, I’m not all that excited about Derrek Lee. It would had been awesome to have him 5 or 6 years ago, but now he’s pretty much toast. But I suppose that if we won’t be stuck with him next year it won’t be too bad.

    Also getting rid of Overbay will be really nice. I preferred Carlos Pena as a good two month rental and giving the Pirates some OPS that is just heads and shoulders above what Overbay has provided….

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Thanks for the thoughts, Jer.

      My sense is that most thinking Cubs fans did want to get rid of Pena, not because there’s anything wrong with Pena, but because he has value, and probably won’t be back next year. I think he probably would have been more productive for you than Lee.

    • spear

      Pena would have been just that( a rental , but a good one). Why we are keeping him I have no clue. If we can’t unload a player where you can literally get something in return and he’s going to be available next year why not? don’t make sense. Reminds me the animal house scene “thank you sir may i have another.” Oh well, I guess Hendry wants everyone laughing behind his back. Or fans with face in palms!

      • Jer

        I heard from some Pirates fans that the Cubs wanna keep him so that they could sign him next year.

        • Zach

          The Cubs could trade Pena and then sign him when he is a free agent. I don’t get the reasoning to keep him to sign him next year when he is valuable and could net some ok prospects.

        • MichiganGoat

          It’s been mentioned and might just happen, I’d be fine with him on the team but not as a starter. He appears to be a stellar leader and great influence, but he just is too inconsistent and since he can only play first he can’t be a super-sub/utility guy. He’d have been a great influence on the young Pirates, Lee is a swell guy but he is a quiet person who never took to a leadership role as a Cub.

      • Lou

        We’re keeping Pena because we have no intention of upgrading and have no one else to play 1b. Translation he’s sticking around for another year. Not that I’m saying it’s bad or good. I’m just saying.

  • MichiganGoat

    Just read this on MLBTR

    The Braves refuse to include both Randall Delgado and Arodys Vizcaino in a deal for Bourn, according to ESPN.com’s Jim Bowden (on Twitter).

    Could mean Byrd is back in play?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Seems like the Cubs would (should) be happy to take just one of those guys. Hey, Braves: Call Jim back!

      • marc

        either or…..its about to be shark week : )

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          24-hour blogging of Shark Week!

          • marc

            Def would see alot more action….

  • Cubbies

    Is it possible that they make a few quick trades like soriano zambrano and a ram last minute?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Highly unlikely. Teams have known Soriano and Zambrano are available for a long time, and the interest just doesn’t seem to be there.

  • Cubbies

    Ughh what the he’ll is going to happen then?!? I got really excited cuz of the hype to dump and rebuild. Im too young to want to go into idle cubs fan mode like most

  • Brian Myers

    OK, I have to ask. Why does everyone like Carlos Pena? Or even WANT Carlos Pena. He’s a good guy… I understand that. He has a good glove. That’s fine too. But we need to look at the deeper numbers.

    Coming into the year he was roughly the 20th ranked 1B man in MLB. You might rank him slightly higher or lower, but that’s about right. If you look at Fantasy numbers ( I know, not fair, but used for reference) he is currently ranked 26th… with all 25 guys ahead of him owning a higher battering average. Yes, he would be high on the HR list among these guys… but that doesn’t matter. Why? Because only 3 guys ahead of him have less RBI’s and the value of the HR is that you get automatic RBI’s.

    It seems to me he’s Dave Kingman with a much better glove.
    http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/k/kingmda01.shtml

    As a one year addition on a club with questionable talent and nobody else to play the position, he was OK. But I wouldn’t WANT him if I had other alternatives. The Pirates picked up Derrek Lee and looking at his stats compared to Pena that’s certainly questionable. But Derrek’s numbers over the past month have actually been BETTER than Carlos Pena’s.

    In short: If the Cubs think they have no chance and need a good clubhouse guy… keeping Pena makes sense. Otherwise it feels like they are talking up his value to make a post-deadline move to someone that doesn’t understand the above. … or this is Hendry and trying to understand anything he does is a work of futility.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Please forward this to Tom Ricketts, c/o Awesomeness.

      I agree wholeheartedly, and hope, as you note, that the Cubs simply didn’t find a great deal right now, and are gambling that a team will get desperate in August.

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