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matt garza cubsLeading up to, and then after, Matt Garza’s most recent start – a dominating effort in Milwaukee on Thursday, chatter about Garza as a trade piece increased exponentially.

  • Given that uptick, Nick Cafardo reports that, according to two big league sources, Garza is expected to be moved sooner rather than later – i.e., well before the July 31 Trade Deadline. An NL GM told Cafardo, “There’s a lot of competition for [Garza]. I think Theo is getting inundated with calls for him, so he’s probably the hot name.” I doubt the Cubs move Garza before the All-Star break unless they get an absolutely ridiculous deal … but as the rumors heat up, I now think that’s a real possibility. I’d still probably bet on Garza being dealt after the break (and after Ricky Nolasco is moved), but nothing would surprise me at this point.
  • Cafardo mentions the Orioles as a particularly good fit for Garza, and …
  • Among a group of names (which includes Scott Feldman), the Orioles are now considering Matt Garza, according to the Baltimore Sun. The issue for the Orioles in a deal for Garza, for example, is going to be the difficulty in matching up in value. The Orioles aren’t going to deal top pitching prospect Kevin Gausman, and they probably aren’t going to deal big-time pitching prospect Dylan Bundy, who set to have Tommy John surgery (though I don’t know that the surgery would necessarily scare the Cubs off from a talent like Bundy). From there, the system is a smattering of interesting types, but no one that obviously stands out as a headliner fit in a Garza deal.
  • Indeed, Jon Heyman reports that the Orioles’ interest in Garza has ticked up after previously being lukewarm, but they believe the price is too high right now. Given the Orioles’ system, I’ve got to believe that they have been given the impression that the Cubs are going to want one of Gausman or Bundy in a Garza deal – otherwise I’m not sure I see how they could conclude the price was too high, given what they have.
  • San Diego beat writer Bill Center chatted with Padres fans on Friday, and Garza’s name came up frequently. Center says Garza, together with Orioles pitcher Jake Arrieta, are the two pitchers he hears most connected to the Padres, adding that the Padres are more in on Garza than Ricky Nolasco. He says that the price for pitching at the deadline is going to be “sky high,” and as many as seven teams are in on Garza. (I suspect it’s more than that.) Recall, San Diego was the destination in the first solid Garza rumor of the season.
  • Jon Morosi reports that, although the Giants would like to acquire a multiyear pitcher, they do have interest in Garza. The Giants are also looking for an outfielder.
  • The Rockies are “aggressively” scouting starting pitchers, including Garza, according to the Denver Post. The Rockies are interested in Kevin Gregg, too, so they might want to try and grab a package at the Chicago Cubs Store. On prospects, though, I’m not sure how well the two teams line up – the Cubs are looking for impact pitching prospects, and that is definitely not the Rockies’ system strength.
  • Paul Swyden at FanGraphs took note of the rising Garza stock, but dug into something we’d noted over the past couple weeks: yes, Garza’s last three starts have been dominant, but they’ve come against the Astros, Mets, and Brewers. And they came on the heels of arguably the worst start of Garza’s career, which was against a very good Reds team. Swyden’s piece downplays the importance of those three successful starts, and contends that, because of Garza’s injury history and his career numbers (which are good, but not Number Two material), a team trading for him should not expect that they’re getting the apparent stud that faced the Astros, Mets, and Brewers. It’s fair to raise that flag of caution, but it’s also fair to note that beating up on bad teams is something good pitchers do – you can’t punish them for it. And the truth is, a handful of dominant starts probably won’t jack up Garza’s value so much as it will simply convince interested teams that he’s as healthy and effective as he’s ever been (and the opinions on that effectiveness might vary among teams). So, if you were inclined to want him before, you probably feel justified in going hard after him now.
  • Edwin

    “And the truth is, a handful of dominant starts probably won’t jack up Garza’s value so much as it will simply convince interested teams that he’s as healthy and effective as he’s ever been (and the opinions on that effectiveness might vary among teams). ”

    This. Great point.

  • Koyie Hill Sucks

    I still disagree with this move. He seems the type of pitcher the cubs should be looking to go after, a 28 year old #2 starter. Plus he was already out a long time with an injury and we know how much Theo & Co love players who make Greg Oden look durable!

    • willis

      I agree keeping and extending him is the best thing for this team, but that ship has long since sailed. So we just have to sit here and watch the deal happen…and hope it brings a hell of a return.

      • Chad

        Can’t sign a dude that doesn’t want to sign. Garza wants too much money and years to be affordable for what the cubs are trying to do.

        • willis

          I guess that’s the case, still, I wish that the two sides could come up with an agreement that is best for both. But that’s just not happening. Hopefully the return is decent because talents like Garza are hard to replace.

  • JulioZuleta

    I know you start sky high in your asking price, but I don’t see how Theo or Jed could possibly ask the Orioles for Gausman or Bundy with a straight face.

    • jh03

      But, when looking at the Orioles system, if they’re not going to trade either of them, then there probably isn’t a fit for a deal. So, if they want Garza, they’ll need to over-pay.

      Yeah, that’s too much value for Garza, but it’s probably the only deal they can reasonably make the Cubs.

      • JulioZuleta

        Without knowing the system all that well, I have a hard time believing that there aren’t 2-4 guys that could be packaged together to make a pretty nice return in a Garza deal.

        • jh03

          Those guys are top two, obviously. Then they have an average-regular, high 5, ceiling 2nd basemen in Johnathan Schoop, who’s at AA, with a decent risk factor. Followed by a 3/4 ceiling LHP, Eduardo Rodriguez, at #4, with a high risk factor and he’s only at low-A. The #5 guy is a 4 ceiling pitcher, Mike Wright, in AA, with a decent risk.

          Honestly, they could package those 3 guys, plus some other top 10, and I don’t know if that’s sexy enough for Garza. Their farm drops off quite a bit after Bundy/Gausman.

          • jh03

            Those are all via Baseball Prospectus, btw.

            • Cyranojoe

              Agreed. And the Cubs really will be and should be looking for a return with potential #2 starter potential, at the least.

        • steve123

          I happen to agree with jh03, I find the orioles a much better fit for Feldman. The O’s have plenty of players that could make up a good Scott Feldman trade.

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

          Not that the Cubs are likely to be interested in. The Cubs want high ceiling pitching, and Baltimore is thin there.

        • Rebuilding

          The only other Orioles arm that I like is Eduardo Rodrigues. 20 yo lefty who just got named to the Futures game and bumped to AA. He’s their #5 prospect:

          http://www.baseball-reference.com/minors/player.cgi?id=rodrig006edu

          • jh03

            But, he’s in low-A and only has a 3 ceiling… with a high risk factor. That’s not enough to be the headliner in a Garza deal. I’m thinking that’s more of a Feldman type of return… maybe.

            • steve123

              I would love a return of E-Rod for Feldman. We need a slightly more risky return for Feldman with a good upside Lefty.

              • Rich H

                The only way that is happening is if you put Barney in a trade with Feldman. We are not going to get that much for Feldman strait up.

            • Rebuilding

              Agree. Just saying he’s the only other arm in their system that is even interesting to me

              • Rebuilding

                And he just got promoted to AA after dominating A+

                • JayPaul

                  I get the feeling, as far as the Orioles are concerned, this may be a case of one division rival trying to run up the price tag on another. If the Boston’s and Toronto’s feel Baltimore would pony up one of their top prospects it could in theory entice them to pay more in prospects than they were at first willing. If Boston or Toronto wants Garza, Baltimore is making sure the cost is as high as possible.

        • Jay

          Yes, but when trading an arm like Garza you’re looking at quality and ceiling–not number of bodies. Can get those with some of the lesser assets we have.

    • Jp3

      Meh, all they can say is no… Or laugh… Someone will overpay, or Garza could run into an outfield wall and be out 4-6 weeks…ugh

      • willis

        That seems to be the “in” thing for the Cubs these days. I wonder who is next? Cub player+wall=6 week DL stints.

  • Timmy

    Garza is a quality 2 pitcher when he’s on, and a 3 pitcher by average. We should definitely trade him if just because the GM office has disrespected him so much over the past couple years, treating him as bait instead of a building block.

    If we’re not going to resign him we should at least gain a few prospects. The quality of those prospects will be much more meager than we’ll hope for simply because he has a short term left on his contract and has recently been injured.

  • Cubfanbob

    Beyond being healthy and consistent in his last three starts one thing he has over all the other pitchers on the market is real playoff experience and battle tested in the trenches of the American League East. I feel he is also a gritty player and a leader in the club house. Something the Cubs need more of….

  • Rich H

    I still think that Garza or Feldman is moving soon just because the Cubs don’t want to get in a conversation like “Well that is a lot for Garza. How much cheaper is Feldman” as the trade deadline approaches.

  • socalicubsfan

    Stay healthy and pitch well, Matt and soon, very soon, you will be on a contender. Hopefully, sooner and for 2-3 prospects of strong value for our future.
    Now I have to walk away from the computer… brain starting to get crispy from the Hot Stove!

  • cub2014

    I think the Cubs are about to get hot (run production wise).
    Soriano,Rizzo & Castro are heating up, which is good
    because guys like Valbuena will be getting back to there
    career averages. But it will still be time to sell.

  • http://Bleachernation Lou Brock

    I read that Gary Hughes special scout for the BoSox is currently on the West coast following the Cubs. LHP Owens & RHP Ranaudo #’s 5&16 in their system gets Garza if I’m doing the deal.

    • Rebuilding

      I would like a deal with the Red Sox who seem to be one of the few systems that could trade a few arms that are high upside w/o gutting their system. I’m also a big fan of C -Blake Swihart – and evidently so is Theo

      • On The Farm

        This. I think Theo still has his man-crushes in Boston and think a deal for Garza for Boston prospects is highly likely. I think all 4 of their top arms are attractive trade pieces. Barnes (obiviously), Owens is good enough to be a center piece, Webster hasn’t been as good as last year, but I remember last summer I thought he had good stuff when I read over his reports. Finally I think Workman has some good stuff too, the best news is all of those 4 are above A ball which makes their MLB target date very attractive.

        • itzscott

          Theo wanted Allen Webster as part of a package for Garza from the Dodgers last year who has since been traded to the Red Sox.

          I have a hunch Theo may still have an eye on Webster, but from the Red Sox this time.

          • On The Farm

            Yeah kind of the direction I was going there with Webster, I know he was highly regarded last summer by the FO, but Dempster for Webster just wasn’t cutting it for LA

    • DavidC

      Ranaudo is a lot higher than 16 now. Dude got his velocity back and is dominating.

    • cubmig

      Sooooo glad the Cubs got rid of Hughes.

  • Rebuilding

    The Orioles are only going to have a few chances to win that division in any given decade. If I was an Orioles fan I would have no problem giving up Bundy to try and win this year. A smallish starter already going under the knife this young. As a Cubs fan he scares the heck out of me

    • JulioZuleta

      If you were an Orioles fan you’d have a huge fan giving up Bundy. You’re talking about a guy that was arguably the top prospect in baseball last year. While the injury definitely hurts, they aren’t trading him for a rental. Not a chance.

      • JulioZuleta

        huge problem*

        • Rebuilding

          Like I’ve said before I’m just not as big a Bundy fan as many. He’s very small for a SP that relies on velocity. Listed at 6’1″ although he is more like 5’11″. Try to find successful SP that aren’t soft tossing leftys that are under 6’0″. There really aren’t any. Cueto is about the only one I can think of and now he is breaking down. The fact that he is TJS-ing at his age is a huge red flag to me

          • Coop

            Off the top of my head – recent examples include Pedro and Oswalt

            • Rebuilding

              Yeah, those are about the only two mentioned in the article on the subject. And that’s going back at least a decade. They are very hard to find

              • Coop

                True – but Bundy was being talked about in the same vein last year. Stuff was fantastic – one of the best HS pitching prospects in quite a while. Just because they are rare, doesn’t mean he isn’t in that category. Players like that are hard to find until you find them…

    • Carew

      A good friend of mine is an Oriole fan and he gave me an offer of Garza-Villanueva for Arrieta-Britton-Hoes-Tommy Hunter (or Patton)…

      • Mick

        …and that’s why we shouldn’t be dealing with the Orioles. I really hope we can raid the Red Sox system, get Perez from Texas, or Kelly from San Diego.

        Tell your friend I’d give him Feldman for Arrieta and Hunter though.

      • On The Farm

        I have a friend that said the Twins are hurting for a SS in their system, I offered Baez for SPs May and Meyer and he said he would get back to me.

        • Rich H

          Geez Baez, Mano and Buxton. That would not just be top system that would be one of the top rankings all time as far as impact high ceiling talent.

        • Mick

          Oh man, that’s a good offer but I’d guess the Twins would pass. The Cubs and Twins systems are somewhat similar in that they have great positional but limited high-upside SP prospects. Baez is tempting but Terry Ryan doesn’t spend big on FA SP and Meyer and May will be in their 2014 rotation. Would the Cubs even do that deal?

          • On The Farm

            Looking at the Twins rotation no way they would do it. They finally have three power arms (Gibson, May, and Meyer) after spending the last 6-7 years relying soley on the control pitchers (Slowey, Baker, Boof, and Blackburn) I think Minnesota is ready for some youthful flamethrowers.

            But it was fun to play THEOretical GM for a night and add some impact arms and not even dealing Garza or Feldman.

  • JB88

    That last bullet is one of the reasons I wouldn’t be adverse to seeing the Cubs deal Garza sooner rather than later.

    • Mick

      Exactly but his next couple of starts are against Oakland and the White Sox so, as we’re waiting for better offers or more teams to jump in, at least the teams we’re facing aren’t offensive juggernauts. Although, after his White Sox start, Garza’s next start would be the Cardinals on July 13th.

      • Matt

        The team he was injured against last year, on top of being an offensive force.

  • North Side Irish

    Chris Cotillo ‏@ChrisCotillo 4m
    Hearing from #Cubs source that they are talking to two teams about Carlos Marmol, trying to get a deal done.

    Seriously?

    • cms0101

      Is Marmol a candidate for International Pool money perhaps?

    • Cyranojoe

      Could be. Teams might want to take a shot on him, and not risk that he goes FA and have to compete for him…?

      • steve123

        I see him only bringing back International pool money or possible a few young prospects, such as a Tony Campana type deal.

        • Rich H

          If they get a sack of groceries for Marmol it is a win.

          • nkniacc13

            exactly when you dfa a pitcher that’s been in the majors as long as marmol if you get anything for him its a good deal

  • Jon

    Outside of Fried, who I doubt they give up, nothing in the Padres system jumps out at me.

    • Dan

      Catcher Austin Hedges would be an amazing get for the Cubs. Extremely unlikely though. I am sure Jed has some gems in that Padres system that he would love to get his hands on.

  • SamuraiJock

    Brett – Any thoughts on Garza’s value this year compared to last year?

    Obviously last year would have been trading with an extra year of control and less recent injury issues, but it seems like the market is shaping up pretty well to move him as a rental this year anyway.

    • Bric

      Yeah, dude, Garza’ value (now and then) is the question that’s wrapped in a mystery, inside a riddle. I don’t think half the GMs in the league even have a good idea of what is value is because there are so many variables involved. He’s an enigma.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      You stated that pretty well. Garza’s value at this time last year was inarguably higher (and probably higher still back before the 2012 season began), but the market appears – *appears* is as far as we can go – to be shaping up with a ton of buyers and very few higher-end arms available.

      I’m going to have a separate post on Garza’s value soon. But you’re reading the situation right: it’s lower this year than last, but it has become surprisingly close, given how much less the trading partner will be getting this year.

      • Bric

        It was much higher last year except for his issues that culminated in his arm injury and DL that took him off the table. He seems fine now, but his injury history’s got to be in the back of a lot of the GMs’ minds.

  • Kubphan82

    Is this what the Cus are hoping for out of these trade rumors?

    Garza to the Padres
    Feldman/Dejesus to the Giants
    Gregg/Sappelt (insert package partner) to the Rockies

    And the Orioles get left out…

    • jh03

      If I were the Cubs, I’d be hoping the Orioles don’t get left out of the Garza deal… because a Bundy/Gausman return is what you really would like to see.

      • Bric

        I think the Cubs would have to throw in another player but Bundy/Gausman return would be absolutely worth it.

        • jh03

          Well, yeah, I’m not saying that will happen. I only said I think the Cubs “hope” the Orioles are part of the deal… because he said the Cubs were hoping the Orioles were out of it all..

        • Rebuilding

          I don’t see any way the Orioles trade both. It’s the same situation as Arizona with Skaggs/Bradley. One maybe…both no way

          • Bric

            you’re probably right.

            • jh03

              When I said Bundy/Gausman I meant one or the other… I didn’t mean to give off the vibe I’m meaning both.

              • Bric

                I got you, bud. But we can still dream….

    • steve123

      I see the Dodgers make a big splash on Garza, especially if they do not get Nolasco. They also have a couple prospects that could make a deal get done. They are also a good landing spot for Navarro (although he wont bring back much unless in a package deal).

      • Rebuilding

        Zach Lee and Joc Pederson. Highly regarded lefty in AA who seems to have really figured it out this year and a guy who can play all 3 OF positions and is having a monster year as one of the youngest players in AA. They could both see MLB this year. Ned Coletti is not very bright and his seat is very warm

        • steve123

          They also seem to like going after one or two top trade prospects. Last year with Hanley and Greinke.

        • DavidC

          Lee is a righty

          • On The Farm

            And Joc is a lefty OF who can play all three spots..

            I can see where a little confusion on how he phrased his sentence, but the second sentence is specifically about Joc, most people remember Lee from last summer.

      • Rizzofanclub

        I don’t see a deal to the dodgers, remember last year how they were so stingy with prospects? No way would they include Zach Lee and Reed is not enough. If they offered Joc Pederson ( I know we want pitchers but this prospect is something special.) Maybe the Pirates will actually give their fans a winner for once and offer Tyler Glasnow for Schierholtz, Navarro and Feldman. Now that deal would make me do a happy dance and probably put the Pirates in the playoffs.

        • Rebuilding

          I just think the Dodgers and Coletti are in a different position this year. If they don’t make the playoffs then no ones job is safe. If the rumors are true and they get the Cuban pitcher and pick up a trade piece then Lee really has no room in the rotation. The emergence of Puig has also made Pederson a little more expendable. It would be a great return, but not impossible

  • Kyle

    If Garza gets hurt in his next two starts or something, I’m never going to stop laughing.

    • cerambam

      If Garza gets hurt in his next two starts or something, I’m never going to stop crying.

      FTFY

  • Dan

    I understand that the Cubs want pitching, but how about Jonathan Schoop. Interesting high upside type of guy.

    • jh03

      He’s not *that* high of an upside… Plus, second base prospects aren’t really attractive enough to net a guy like Garza, imo.

      • Dan

        Yea but I think the Gausman/Bundy talk is simply nuts. That’s not going to happen. You have to look down the list a little bit. Schoop is an interesting guy. Add a few arms to the deal and maybe we have something.

        • On The Farm

          Because the Cubs have a decent amount of 2B/MI in the system, but not enough arms. Trading Garza for a 2B as the headliner seems a bit counter-productive for a rebuild.

        • jh03

          I agree that Gausman or Bundy is too much for Garza, but if the Orioles are going to trade with the Cubs they’re going to have to over pay, because the rest of their farm is pretty bad. The Cubs don’t *have* to deal with the Orioles, there are plenty of other teams with better lower upside pitching prospects than what the Orioles have. Pretty much, for Garza, the Orioles will have to give Bundy/Gausman (one or the other), unless the market is much lower than what I’m thinking, because I think the Cubs can get a 2/3 ceiling guy with a high floor for Garza. Which is something the Orioles can’t match unless they offer one of the big 2.

    • King Jeff

      He looks like a utility guy to me. Plays multiple positions, but none of them particularly well. He doesn’t hit for high average, and scouts say he can’t catch up to MLB level fastballs, which is going to limit his power development. He was highly rated a few years ago, but after struggling this year, and getting a stress fracture in his back, he’s dropped quite a bit. That said, former top prospect, injured, and has faded a bit, seems like a Cubs guy to me.

      • Dan

        That’s what I am thinking. Possible buy-low candidate. I just think Gausman or Bundy is so unrealistic and looking at their system, I am not sure of other guys I am interested in. Just pulling out an interesting name really.

  • CubsFanSaxMan

    People seem to forget that it takes talent to get talent. The best thing that could happen for the Cubs is to have many (I mean A LOT) of teams to want Garza. Let the bidding wars begin!

  • http://www.survivingthalia.com Mike Taylor (no relation)

    If we trade Garza to the Rockies, I’d take Chad Bettis, Corey Dickerson, and Tom Murphy.

    • King Jeff

      I would be very disappointed in that return for Garza.

    • steve123

      I had to look them up, but Dickerson and Murphy are killing it this year, but I dont know if Bettis, who is currently hurt, would be a enough for a headliner. Throw in all their International signing and we are closer to a deal.

    • sclem21

      Bettis was hurt all last year, too.

      Jim Bowden suggested Pomeranz and Swanner as a return from Rockies for Garza.

  • Kurt

    Don’t get too excited about the Orioles (how many years of the Brian Roberts B.S. did we have to put up with) or the Rays. Both the organizations seem to want something for nothing, Be polite, listen, but let them know what you want and then move on. I wouldn’t consider either organization as serious unless they come to the Cubs with a respectable offer. Hendry never learned that and got strung long by them way too often.

    Doubt that happens with Thoyer, at least I hope not.

    • cubmig

      LOL—–reading the name Brain Roberts and I couldn’t agree with you more. They were such dicks when all that talk was going on. Yep. Tell ‘em what we want and move on. You got it right.

  • Rich H

    One surprise team that a friend of mine from that area was hearing is Oakland for Garza. They are so young and do not really have a true TOR starter. It is definitely an interesting idea with their system.

    • steve123

      This is a really interesting trade partner. I really like Grant Green in their system. He can play anywhere and hits for an over .300 average. He would be a good potential leadoff or #2 batter. Outside of him, there are still several pieces I like.

    • Rebuilding

      The A’s have some pieces. Addison Russell is probably untouchable. But there are guys like Sonny Gray, Dan Straily, Grant Green, Max Stassi and Miles Head. Not sure I see a great fit for Garza though

      • sclem21

        Miles Head has been awful in AA and now is back in Arizona ‘rehabbing his shoulder’ AKA trying to fix his broken swing. He also can’t play a lick of 3B and even 1B is shaky.

  • Jon

    I like to put pitchers in two categories

    Those that have had TJS

    Those who have NOT had TJS

    Because Bundy has fallen in the first category, he is by no means off limits if they want Garza, shoot, I don’t even think I want him at this point.(as a centerpiece in a Garza return)

    • sclem21

      I’d take Bundy in a heartbeat. Even missing 18 months (12 from TJ and the 6ish previous from trying to avoid TJ) he is still going to be major league ready at a young age and his ceiling is spectacular

  • Die hard

    Theo media machine amazing!!!

  • North Side Irish

    Ben Badler of BA posted his predictions this morning for where the TOp 30 July 2 prospects will sign and he predicts the Cubs will sign both Eloy Jimenez and Gleyber Torres, who are the top two prospects on his list. He also has them signing #16 Erling Moreno, a RHP from Columbia.

    • cms0101

      There’s a 4th guy I’ve seen they’re predicted to sign, but BA didn’t list him in their top 30 because he was banned last season for giving a false age. Jefferson Mejia is his name.

    • nkniacc13

      I really like that Columbian at 6’3 and throws in the low 90′s already

  • Michael

    I would like to see Feldman for middlebrooks and pretty solid lottery ticket type arm!!

  • BRANT BROWN

    MLBTR has the rockies very interested in Feldman. Can we snag Pomeranz for him? I remember he was labeled a future 1 before the ubaldo trade. I know pitching at coors and that weird rotation thing they had going on last year didn’t help his value. We can also say come on you traded us I an Stewart help a homie out.

    • nkniacc13

      I wouldn’t mind Pomeranz either in a Feldman deal.

    • SenorGato

      Even with Pomeranz’ flaws that would be a huge get. Hes got the arm to be a significant pitching piece.

      • Crockett

        He does, but he’s got such enormous control/command issues I wouldn’t want him as a centerpiece.

  • LWeb23

    Anyone see the joke of an article Bowden put up today (ESPN Insider)? He proposes 5 Matt Garza deals. All of them were absolute garbage. So either my expectations for a Garza deal have fallen significantly, or my respect for Bowden is going to fall (even more). I’m going with the latter.

    • UCF

      I saw it and thought the same thing.

      • Crockett

        That’s good ol’ Bowden for you. Kind of explains why he’s not a GM anymore.

        Garza may only fetch those types of returns IF the Phillies decide to trade Lee and another very good starter gets dealt as well.

        I don’t want Pomeranz. Significant control/command issues.

    • cubmig

      “Anyone see the joke of an article Bowden put up today (ESPN Insider)? He proposes 5 Matt Garza deals. All of them were absolute garbage.”

      …..kind of makes the “Insider” label smell.

      • SenorGato

        What were the deals?

        • Crockett

          Ross plus a throw in from Texas.

          Pomeranz plus a throw in from Colorado.

          Those were the only two that even had prospects worth anything…not joking.

  • brunsmk

    Almost all of Bowden’s ideas are like these. I am not sure how he is still writing for ESPN, probably because he can’t get back into a front office in any capacity. Articles like these won’t help his cause.

  • Crockett

    One of the major issues this deadline is that MOST of the teams in need of a player like Garza simply do not line up well with the Cubs as far as what they even CAN offer.

    Rockies and Orioles are out.

    Dodgers will not move Lee…they’re out.

    That basically leaves the Padres and Rangers.

    • SenorGato

      I think the Dodgers would move Lee for a high quality rotation arm like Garza.

      • Crockett

        I just can’t see it happening. If you’re right, well then the Cubs would have at least one offer worth moving on.

        • SenorGato

          Of course you can’t – nobody imagines teams trading their top prospects for real even though it happens all the time. Its part of this day and age when trading prospects often leads to getting slaughtered with words on the internet.

          • Crockett

            If this was Garza with an extra year…yes.

            I can’t see them dealing him for a rental.

            • SenorGato

              Again, standard in prospects for player talks. The player is never good enough and never has enough years of control. Meanwhile the prospect has the whole world by the balls with a good chance of becoming at least as good as the player traded for, and for cheap!

              You’re right to be cautious I guess, but I have my doubts Garza is moved for anything less than a top prospect headlining. By top prospect I don’t mind some guy who fits somewhere in the top 100 either, but someone who fronts a system and will get the buying team criticized like almost all buying teams immediately after. Soon enough everyone forgets and maybe even a few realize that often traded prospects would give their left nut to be as good as the guy they were traded for.

              • SenorGato

                Seeing it in Zach Wheeler right now actually. Everyone was all over him for his list ranking and it was enough to cover up that he throws the ball a little funny and doesn’t throw enough strikes yet. Now Matt Harvey is the hot boy, Carlos Beltran continues to be an awesome major leaguer, and Wheeler has to spend a couple of years feelings things out without getting hurt.

    • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

      What is will come down too – how long can these races stay close – within 4 games – and whose the GM who is most impatient for acquisition of a ‘difference maker’ and can sell that as such.

      Boston, SD, Pittsburgh, SF, COL all can offer options the Cubs can use. Talent even if not SP is to be acquired – I think the Cubs have enough holes on offense too that need filling. The market for top-tier SP (since Arizona is not coming off their best???) may not work out to 3 high ceiling SPs. May just 2 SP – 1 high, a #3. AND those other GMs have fan bases to answer to.

      Most message boards, not Cubs related, don’t think that much of Garza, Feldman, or Gregg. But they are entitled to their opinions. And hate rentals in general – probably James Russell holds a bit more value as trade piece as long as he stays on track. Bullpens being bullpens.

  • SenorGato

    All this talk of Garza for prospects….What if the Tigers swapped out Garza for Porcello in the rotation? I cant think of a more win now franchise in the sport, and Porcello is a guy on pace to break out in 2 years. He and Castellanos are highly talented guys who seem so prime for the taking…

    • Rich H

      If you are trading with Detriot and the deal does not include Smyly count me out. That kid has the it factor we need and can move right into the rotation.

      • On The Farm

        I don’t care if he has this so called “it factor” what really matters is if he has belly fire.

        • Rich H

          lol I meant his stuff. He is electric on the mound and that is something that we need.

      • SenorGato

        Much bigger fan of Porcello than Smyly, and that is with liking Smyly. I don’t see electric stuff from Smyly, just well spotted stuff concentrated within short appearances.

        Not to mention he is too valuable to Detroit’s bullpen. Also, he is half a year younger than Porcello without anywhere near the track record of innings and health, two things that are a pretty big (and for whatever reason, underrated online) deals for starting pitchers. Throw in that Porcello has been an average or better ML starter since he was 20…

        If there’s a lefty reliever to starter candidate out there that I can describe as electric it would be Andrew Miller of the Red Sox.

        • Rebuilding

          Hmmmm…not sure why you like Porcello over Smyly, Gato. Yes, he has a longer track record, but it is mainly a track record of not being very good. Every spring there are reports that Porcello has finally figured it out and then he goes out and puts up:

          ERA+

          2009: 114
          2010: 85
          2011: 87
          2012: 93
          2013: 82

          • SenorGato

            Porcello FIPs:

            2009: 4.77
            2010: 4.31
            2011: 4.06
            2012: 3.91
            2013: 3.64

            He’s even better by xFIP. He’s also done this all while in the rotation getting ML starter innings without a hint of injury, started key decisive games (most famously game 163 in 2009), and improving the quality of his stuff to close up his biggest statistical flaw (strikeouts).

            • SenorGato

              All this and he doesn’t turn 25 until mid-December.

              • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

                He also gets another healthy arbitration raise. I like Porcello, too, but he isn’t quite the same cost-controlled youngster you’d expect to see from a 24/25-year-old.

                • SenorGato

                  This matters so much less to me than talent.

                  • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

                    Less? Sure. So much less? Nah.

                    If it’s all about talent, perhaps the Cubs should just hang onto Garza.

                    • SenorGato

                      Nope, I go with so much less here.

                      If you’re worried about Porcello’s price then keeping Garza shouldn’t really appeal to you? He’s the one that will push double digits sooner rather than later to go with older age and an injury history.

                    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

                      ?

                      The point is that contract status matters. If it didn’t, the Cubs wouldn’t be dealing Garza in the first place.

                    • SenorGato

                      My point was that if contract status matters that much then Porcello has a point over Garza. Throw in health and youth as well…

              • Rebuilding

                Yes, but he has been below average to flat out bad for four straight years. He just strikes me as a guy that gets hype because he came up so early, but his results just haven’t matched.

                Smyly ERA+:
                2012: 107
                2013: 195 (out of the bullpen)

                • SenorGato

                  No, he hasn’t. I just showed you he hasn’t with the FIP numbers. He’s also been at least a 2 fWAR rotation arm every year of his career except 2010, when it was 1.8.

                  Drew Smyly very extremely likely is not 50% better than the league if he moves to the rotation as his career ERA+ suggests. ERA+ in general is just one number and hardly a good foundation for an argument these days.

                  • Rebuilding

                    Ok, I guess we’ll just agree to disagree. Porcello’s results never seem to match his peripherals. As more of a groundball pitcher that infield defense in Detroit might have more than a little something to do with it. Don’t dislike Porcello, just like Smyly more

                    • SenorGato

                      Sure but there’s less reason to like Smyly more once you dig past basics.

                    • YourResidentJag

                      Do you think Smyly could be Travis Wood? If he could, hard to dislike that.

                    • SenorGato

                      Hot start aside becoming Travis Wood is less exciting than it may seem right now.

                    • YourResidentJag

                      So, you’d trade him, then?

        • Bric

          Totally agree about Miller. Plus you got the Thedstein-Red Sox connection. But not sure the Red Sox are even in a dealing crazy mode just yet.

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