ESPN’s Jayson Stark appeared on Mike and Mike this morning, and stated flatly that, “It looks like Matt Garza is going to get traded today.” There was no hedging (other than the “looks like”), and the information came straight from an executive.
Stark, you may recall, was saying Garza was not going to be traded as recently as two days ago. He’s come around something fierce, which tells me he’s basing this on pretty solid info. He mentions the same teams we’ve been hearing – the Reds, the Rangers, and the Blue Jays – but stops short of suggesting the details of an actual deal.
In related Garza rumors, Ken Rosenthal reports that the Rangers aren’t actually all that enthused with the starting pitching options right now (which would include, probably at the top, Matt Garza). They may instead wait to see how things shake out in August, though they won’t be getting Garza then, as he’ll never clear waivers (or even make it to them on the waiver priority).
Multiple sources, and my gut, say the Reds are an odd fit at best for Garza, for a variety of reasons (tough fit in prospects, in division, money for Garza, full rotation, etc.). That said, Jon Heyman chimes in that Garza is believed to be in play for the Reds.
UPDATE: Nick Cafardo reports that, “at this hour,” the Red Sox are not involved in Matt Garza talks. I don’t really understand it, myself, as they are still very much in contention, and could really use a guy like Garza. But, then again, some Red Sox personnel were saying a week ago that Garza wouldn’t really be an upgrade over what they already have …
UPDATE 2 (at 11:12am CT): Hooray for simultaneously updating posts. Jon Heyman reports that the Rangers are in discussions with the Cubs about Garza, and he says there’s a chance of a deal, but a source told him it was “doubtful.” The Cubs are almost certainly insisting on one of the big three – Mike Olt, Martin Perez, or Jurickson Profar – and the Rangers are, understandably, blanching.
UPDATE 3 (at 11:17am CT): Wow. Nick Cafardo followed up his earlier tweet by saying that the Red Sox were one of a few teams that dropped out of the Garza race because of the triceps injury, but that “Garza will go though.” Wow.
UPDATE 4 (at 12:00pm CT): Ken Rosenthal reports that the Diamondbacks’ brass is at an all hands on deck meeting, and he speculates it’s about picking up a pitcher to counter the moves of the Dodgers and Giants. No indication that it’s Garza, mind you, but they definitely have the pieces to make it happen.
UPDATE 5 (at 12:33pm CT): Buster Olney drops the Justin Upton bomb, which you had to know someone would do at some point. “Diamondbacks working hard on something big, and a Garza/Upton framework makes sense for both Cubs and Diamondbacks.” Before you get nutty, remember: the Cubs are reportedly one of four teams on Upton’s no-trade list. That would be a big hold-up.
UPDATE 6 (at 12:39pm CT): Jon Morosi says the Rays and Rangers have re-engaged in James Shields trade talks. I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that the Rangers prefer Shields to Garza, even though you could make the case that Garza is presently the better pitcher.
UPDATE 7 (at 12:46pm CT): A baseball source tells Steve Gilbert that there’s nothing to Garza/Upton. There never was.
UPDATE 8 (at 1:03pm CT): Ken Rosenthal just reported on MLBN that Diamondbacks pitching prospect Patrick Corbin has been scratched from his start today, and the panel went nuts speculating that it’s Matt Garza related. Nothing firm there in the least.
UPDATE 9 (at 1:17pm CT): We suspected it, but Bruce Levine confirms: the Blue Jays and Rangers were on hand to scout Garza’s bullpen session yesterday.
UPDATE 10 (at 2:30pm CT): Danny Knobler confirms that the Diamondbacks have considered Garza. Things have gone awfully quiet on the Garza front, though, obviously.