A little pre-game update with (very) relevant quotes from and about the Cubs’ two biggest trade chips, Ryan Dempster and Matt Garza, which were gleaned from intrepid reporters in attendance, Doug Padilla, Patrick Mooney, and Jordan Bernfield:
- Cubs manager Dale Sveum admitted that he would be surprised if Dempster is still a Cub come game-time tomorrow, which is a shockingly candid admission. Sveum said that Dempster is too good of a pitcher for all these teams that need a pitcher to pass up.
- Dempster doesn’t expect a trade to come down today, though he admits that could change at any moment. My thoughts? He doesn’t expect a trade today because he’s letting the Cubs squeeze the Dodgers for the next 20 hours, before he’ll finally relent and accept a trade elsewhere (if the Dodgers don’t step up their offer).
- Dempster doesn’t believe it will be awkward if he’s still a Cub when his start rolls around tomorrow night.
- Garza’s bullpen session went “extremely well” today, according to Sveum. No one is reporting whether there were scouts in attendance for the session, but obviously it’s good news that things went well. Garza is still unlikely to be traded by tomorrow, but I’d say he’s as likely as any other injured player to be moved in recent memory.
- Phil Rogers was also there for Dempster’s quotes, and he left with the impression that Dempster would definitely be willing to accept a trade to a team other than the Dodgers. “He has said he won’t discuss particular cities until he’s approached by Theo Epstein with a deal, but he doesn’t sound like a guy who is stonewalling a trade,” Rogers wrote.