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matt garza cubsWhen your favorite team is an obvious seller in mid-July, and your favorite team has the most valuable trade chip presently acknowledged to be on the market, as a fan, you have to prepare yourself to be deluged by information, rumors, updates, etc. in the Internet age. To that end, allow me to do some dumping …

If you’re within 50 feet of Twitter this evening, you’re seeing two names in same-sentences that are making you uncomfortably overjoyed: Matt Garza and Jurickson Profar.

Arguably the top prospect in all of baseball coming into the season, Profar is the kind of uberstud that a team like the Texas Rangers simply would not trade (short of maybe a Giancarlo Stanton type deal), and would obviously never trade in a rental move for Matt Garza.

So, why are folks talking about those two names?

Well, Dave Kaplan says he just taped an interview with national reporter Bob Nightengale, who said that he believes Profar is in play for Garza. Before you lose yourself in the deepest, teen-agiest squeal since October 2011, we don’t yet know the precise contours of what Nightengale was saying (though I believe the interview will be up momentarily). It could be simply that he was saying Profar could enter into the discussions if the deal was expanded dramatically. Even then, I have a hard time seeing it, and Kaplan made sure to distance himself slightly from Nightengale’s comments. For now, I’d temper – if not just downright shut off – any Profar-related enthusiasm.

For now, you’ll probably want to tune in to Sports Talk Live on CSN, which starts at 5:30pm CT.

(And no, I’m not saying either Nightengale or Kaplan are “trolling for hits” – I just wanted you to know straight away when you saw Profar’s name that I definitely wasn’t.)

UPDATE: I was not able to see the interview, but I’m told that Nightengale said he thinks Profar’s stock has fallen such that he could be included in a Garza deal. It’s hard to know whether that’s based on a source or merely informed speculation, but I’ll stick with my initial reaction: it’s nice to hear, but I strongly doubt it. If the Rangers aren’t making Martin Perez available for Garza, then they definitely aren’t making Profar available.

UPDATE 2: Nightengale took to Twitter to downplay his comments, and this sounds much more like where we all were before this all came up: “Not sure how this got spun out of control from Show. The #Rangers would like Garza, and Profar is best trade chip, but no idea if any talks.” So, there you go. Things are as they were before: Garza ain’t netting Profar, and the Rangers probably aren’t dealing Profar in any deal this month.

  • dan

    If we trade Alcantara we will regret it he coud be the next Sandberg or better

    • Reality Check

      the next Sandberg???………..he’s in the Hall of Fame. Wow; nice stretch on that one. How about just sette for all-star or just really good player. (and remember almost all of the top prospects are hitters; so at some point between now and 2016; when this team could be a 85 game winner; it’s gonna be “what about the pitching? as Harry would say.) or it won’t matter how many good hitting prospects we have.

    • Bill

      I’ve read where it’s believed that Alcantara will crack the top 100 prospects. Many people think he could be a top 50 prospect if his K rate was a little lower. His K rate this year is a little over 22%. If he could get that down to around the mid teens, he could be a very nice player for the Cubs. His power has progressed, he can steal a base, plays a good 2B. I think the FO is very high on Alcantara so I doubt he’s traded unless they get a major prospect in return in a package deal.

  • Mush

    I saw a Garza and Baez for Olt and Profar. No way. Olt has vision problems and Profar no where power of Baez.

    • http://bleachernation.com RicoSanto

      How about Castro instead of Baez

    • http://www.tmz.com God

      Olt got his eyes fixed. Needed drops and he can see now. Hitting the ball better already.

      • Serious Cubs Fan

        I don’t blame massive slump on his eyes completely. Guy can’t hit righties.

  • Serious Cubs Fan

    David Kaplan reports: handful of club executives consider Garza a very strong No. 3 starter. That make Travis Wood only a #4? Don’t mean to rehash this argument but I think we all agree Garza is a better pitcher then Wood (at least in terms of stuff and as of now). I personally think you can make an argument that Wood could be considered a mid-low #3 but I think of him as more of a very good #4.

    • Serious Cubs Fan
    • Kyle

      The starter-number ranking system in baseball is kind of screwy.

      • Internet Random

        Agreed.

        • Bill

          Yep, when you figure there’s only maybe a little over a half dozen guys who would be classified as a true number one.

          • DocPeterWimsey

            And given that there are 30 teams, that is sort of silly. I look at starters as Top 30, Top 60 (not 30), Top 90 (not 60), etc. The 45th best starter in baseball might not sound like much, but the expectation is that he’ll be the 2nd best starter on half of MLB teams. If you have the 45th best starter AND 2 starters better than that, then you have a pretty strong rotation.

            • Bill

              Agreed. I’ve always thought it was a ridiculous argument. Ok, so Garza might not be a number 2 on the best pitching staffs, but he would be on many, if not most MLB teams.

    • WGNFAN

      I think Wood is getting up to a solid 3 if he continues like this maybe a 2. Garza is a solid 2 if healthy.

    • http://Isa Voice of reason

      Dave Kaplan? Were now posting reports from Dave Kaplan?

      I’d rather have tweets from the drunk sitting at the end of the bar at The Cubby Bear. The drunk has more insight than Kaplan.

    • CubsFaninMS

      It’s easy to get caught up in what number of starter Wood is. Although he doesn’t have overpowering stuff, he has pinpoint accuracy. That’s a tool and could play out his entire career. He had the same control in spurts last year. Projecting what type of starter he will be in the future is hard to do. If you look at his ERA and opponent BA, he is clearly pitching like a #1 so far this year. Everyone is so much higher on Samardzija than Wood. Samardzija has velocity, something Wood doesn’t have as much of. But without control, where does velocity get you? I submit to you Henry Rodriguez. Samardzija has a higher ceiling due to his dominance but Samardzija’s velocity has not been a greater tool than Wood’s accuracy so this year.

      • sans

        Wood is a solid starting pitcher in any rotation. However, advanced metrics suggest that his ERA is misleading, and he’s received a nice amount of luck.

        • AlwaysNextYear

          Oh God here we go with luck.

          • Mr. B. Patient

            I’m with you. I need someone to prove luck.

            • CubFan Paul

              Agreed. There’s no luck. It’s called making adjustments and executing. Wood has do everything that thanks to Bosio and crew.

              • Serious Cubs Fan

                Travis Wood is a good pitcher but take a look at his BABIP. Not saying he’ll turn into a bad pitcher by seasons end but you can expect a little regression.

                • AlwaysNextYear

                  Regression yes I agree with but when someone calls half a year luck that drives me nuts.

              • Mr. B. Patient

                To that point, isn’t it funny how the same pitchers, from year to year, have good luck. Or the same pitchers, from year to year, have bad luck? I have a hard time classifying Greg Maddux as a lucky pitcher. If you throw a pitch in a location that causes bad contact, that’s NOT luck.

                Anyway, if we really need to account for ‘luck’, then we need the official scorers to classify hits as lucky, or legit. Then, if we do that, somewhere along the line, we’ll need to find a way to ‘score’ great catches that rob players of hits.

                • Hansman1982

                  I don’t think folks classify Maddux as a lucky pitcher. However when the BABIP skews too far from the players career average, it’s usually singles finding holes.

                  • Mr. B. Patient

                    Unless the player is on the upward curve of his career. Or his command has improved. I would guess Wood will regress some, but IMO, it will be due to the league making adjustments. Again, when the official scorer determines which hits are lucky, and which are not, using luck as reasoning doesn’t seem right to me.

                    • CubFan Paul

                      “Wood will regress some, but IMO, it will be due to the league making adjustments”

                      smart man.

                • Rebuilding

                  It’s pretty simple. There are things pitchers can control and things they can’t. They can control strikeouts, walks and HRs. They can’t control how many hits “drop in”. It has been shown through multitudes of evidence that on average, when a hitter puts the ball in the field of play, the hitter has about a 30% chance of getting a hit. That goes for Walter Johnson, Cy Young, Antonio Alfonseca and Shawn Camp. It does vary by defense, but it is the statistical average of tens of thousands of games.

                  When people say Wood has been “lucky” this year all they are saying is that more balls have been caught (227 BABIP) than would normally be the case. A move closer to 300 will happen and his ERA will rise. On the bright side, he has lowered his HR rate substantially which is one of the things he can control

                  • AlwaysNextYear

                    Well let me ask you something how does a mangers ability to put defenders in the right spots play into those figure.

                    • Rebuilding

                      Shifts do help some, but not as much as most think. I’ve read, although the research isn’t exhaustive, that aggressive shifting saves maybe 10 runs a year. So the change in BABIP would be small. The Cubs team BABIP this year is .285

                  • Mr. B. Patient

                    Si what you are saying is that regardless of where a pitcher throws the ball, the odds of a batted ball dropping in is about 30%. So a pitcher who throws 85 MPH fastballs down the middle of the plate will allow the same amount of hits as a guy who throws 95 MPH on the corners?

                    • Rebuilding

                      Yes, it’s a proven fact. But the guy with better stuff will get more strikeouts and give up less homeruns. This isn’t me saying this – there are articles all over on BABIP

                    • Rebuilding

                      Randy Johnson’s career BABIP was .295, Roger Clemens .286, Greg Maddux .286, Kevin Gregg .293

                    • Mr. B. Patient

                      Rebuilding, I respectfully disagree with you and those articles that ‘prove’ the luck aspect of BABIP, but I thank you for the respectful way you handled our debate.

                    • DarthHater

                      Sandy Koufax: .259 That seems low to a statistically significant degree.

                • Kyle

                  There’s a rather famous story from Maddux that shows what we’re talking about.

                  Maddux averaged a 2.15 ERA from 1992 to 1998. Then suddenly, in 1999, he saw that skyrocket up to 3.57.

                  Maddux, who knew about as much about pitching as any man alive, was asked what he was doing differently. Maddux insisted he was doing everything the same, but he was getting a lot more ground balls that just happened to find the right hole at the wrong time. He said, in effect, that he was unlucky.

                  He didn’t have an ERA that high again until four years later at the age of 37.

              • Drew7

                “Luck” gets thrown around way too loosely. Is “variance” better?

                • Hansman1982

                  Luck/variance, just using two different words to say that the players current performance isnt Expected to continue.

                  • turn two

                    I think the key to understanding the luck factor in babip is to say it must vary for that individual pitcher. If wood is a crafty pitcher who doesn’t miss bats but does work to put the ball where it will be hit poorly then he will traditionally have a certain babip number. Another pitcher maybe strikes out more batters but when the ball is struck it is struck with authority. We can not judge them the same based on luck.however we can look at woods career numbers and see a variance and say for him that he is getting lucky that year.

                    • Rebuilding

                      That’s just wrong. I know it seems counterintuitive, but that has been shown to not be the case

                    • Rebuilding

                      Crafty lefties, hard throwing lefties, control artists, strikeout guys, big guys, small guys, starter and relievers all tend to congregate around a .290-.300 BABIP. It’s probably not surprising given the confined nature of the actual playing field…if you think about it probably about 30% of the field is a safe zone from a fielder once a hitter puts the ball in play. And hitting the ball harder often doesn’t help unless it clears the wall

                    • turn two

                      How are you talking in such absolutes about babip being luck only. It is involving defense, luck and you seem to have missed pitchers skill. The way you are talking i could go out there and pitch and as long as a homerun doesn’t occur, i will have a seventy percent chance of getting an out. Now people debate how much pitcher skill and defense have an impact but you are giving zero credence to the pitchers skill part, reread whatever articles you are talking about.

  • Wester

    Garza, soriano, Gregg, Russell, 30 mil, and an add for the rangers on our jumbotron for profar. Done!

    • Eternal Pessimist

      Sounds a little excessive…unless they take on Soriano’s salary too.

  • Serious Cubs Fan

    Cubs/Dbacks trade proposal: Garza/signs a 5yr $80mil extension and Cubs throw in $20mil for Skaggs/Bradley. Again highly unlikely and probably definitely not realistic but if he would sign an extension in a trade then he’d be worth a lot more then a rental.

    Dbacks Get:
    -A frontline Starter under control for multiple years
    -Great Value with Garza’s contract (by cubs chipping in $20mil then that makes him a 5yr. $60mil player)
    -A pitcher with Mexican heritage they could market to local fans

    • Serious Cubs Fan

      I know the trade proposal sounds ridiculous, but fun to think about. Maybe cubs throw in secondary pieces also like Gregg, Russell, etc.

      • Cub Style

        If the Cubs got Bradley and Skaggs for Garza, we’d have to have a victory parade.

        • DocPeterWimsey

          heh, yeah. However, unless Bradley or Skaggs does something offensive to AZ management (like, I dunno, express free will), then they are untouchable, at least for a rental.

          Now, Shark might actually get one of them. In addition to getting a player they can keep for a while, Gibson in particular would love Shark’s attitude, as they both are football players at heart.

  • AD

    Any word from the real Assman22 tonight?

    • Assman22

      Reports about Rangers “quantity” offer came out today and are still exactly right…they do not want to give up Profar or Perez…Indians, D-Backs, and Cards have all asked for permission to speak with Garza’s agent about an extension(Texas hasn’t yet for some reason)…Indians know they are not contenders without Garza or Gallardo…

      • http://It'searly Mike F

        with this caveat, if Texas were prepared to include Profar or Perez, AZ Skaggs or Bradley, and Cleveland Bauer, I could see any of those teams as not as well positioned as St.Louis. They have a wide variety of quality L and R arms and everyday talent.

        Olt to me as anything more than a additional piece remains a nonstarter. They have been trying too hard too long to peddle him, he is not the key to anything….

        I’d say the Cardinals are in the best position for fit talent wise, with the Indians and Az being 2a and b if they are willing, maybe even 1a and 1b, and Texas, Quantity not quality, which I don’t think should be their focus…..

        as usual Assman you are on top of it. Hearing anything about a done deal?

        • Assman22

          Nothing worth mentioning…teams still playing poker…contenders will cave before Cubs…

          • Assman22

            Pirates keep checking in on Barney, Schierholtz, Gregg, Villanueva, and Garza…on the outside looking in for Garza along with Dodgers and Red Sox…

            • cubspong

              What kind of trade value would you or others expect Barney to have? More or less than a top 10 organizational prospect?

              • MichiganGoat

                By himself definitely less… unless it is a very bad farm system. Barney’s value is his defense and that doesn’t translate to a great return. Maybe a previous top prospect that has fallen but don’t expect much by himself.

                • cubspong

                  If he’s worth that little, would you probably say he has more value to the cubs by keeping him? And when someone displaces him, like Alcantara, then to keep him as a defensive replacement? Or would you lean towards packaging him with another player to net better prospects?

                  • CubFan Paul

                    The latter easily.

                  • MichiganGoat

                    Package him… I know he is a scrappy favorite but he can be replaced (yes I know his defense can’t be but offensively yes and an upgrade wouldn’t be difficult)

            • CubsFaninMS

              I actually believe the Pirates are an excellent fit. I’m surprised they’re not deeper into the rumor mill than they currently are. I’d absolutely LOVE to send Garza their direction and watch him shut the Cardinals out in a Pirates uniform once or twice this year.

          • MichiganGoat

            Well now we get to watch if Crockett or Assman are correct.

            • Jp3

              Yeah I was thinking the same thing, Crockett said, “Done Deal” and Assman said “nothing worth mentioning”. I don’t think there is any gray area between those 2 statements.

  • Jp3

    This will be a long 6 days with the garza drama. Maybe we can still try and trade him through the waiver process?***ducks***

  • Serious Cubs Fan

    Travis Wood Contract Extension: Travis Wood told Dan Hayes that he hopes to be considered a core component and receive an extension similar to the ones signed by Anthony Rizzo and Starlin Castro in the past year:

    “Theo and Jed and them are moving in the right direction,” Wood said. “We’ve got a great group of guys there, and everybody plays hard and as of late we’ve played solid ball. … I’d love to be a part of the core group and stay around Chicago for a while, but that’s out of my hands.”

  • Isaac

    While the idea of the Rangers giving up Profar for Garza is outlandish, as a Cubs fan, I wouldn’t even want it to happen. Other than a stellar OBP (which will NOT continue in the majors with an average power tool), what has Profar done to be so highly lauded? I simply have never understood the hype. Nothing against the young man, I wish him the best; but I wouldn’t dream of trading Baez straight up for him.

    • DocPeterWimsey

      Profar almost certainly will have a much more successful career than Baez will. Batting eye is a tool that probably cannot be learned, after all, and Profar has a very good one. He also has a low K-rate. Combine those, and he’ll need a hellaciously low BABiP to avoid having a high OBP. Profar also has good line drive power: his slugging is better than you imply.

      The idea that the Rangers have given up on him after 172 PAs is pretty laughable: Ryan might be that stats unsavvy, but Daniels is not! Moreover, the idea that they’d give up Profr for a 2.5 month rental (plus some post-season) also is pretty laughable. If Profar is dealt, then it will be for long-term value like Price or (*shudder*) Taveras.

      • http://cubsdailyrecaps.blogspot.com Jason P

        How can you say anything with near certainty when it’s prospects we’re comparing? Profar has the higher floor, but I also think most would agree Baez has a higher ceiling. And batting eye certainly can be learned through experience and coaching — look at Arismendy Alcantara this year. Plus-plus bat speed like Baez possesses, however, cannot.

        If Baez finds the same success at AA he had at High-A, and his approach stays consistent and improved like it was the month+ before the promotion, I think you’ll find him in the top-5 of many prospect lists.

        • hansman1982

          Saying Profar will have a better MLB career than Baez isn’t much of a stretch at all. In A ball, Profar was pretty similar to Baez, but over a year younger.

          That and people GROSSLY underestimate how detrimental Baez’s K and BB profile is to his chances to succeed in the bigs. Chris Davis is everyone’s poster boy for this not mattering but he had already shown some ability to draw a walk before his bad A+ ball season.

          • http://cubsdailyrecaps.blogspot.com Jason P

            But saying it’s a near certainty is a stretch. Baez has a long way to go to reach his ceiling, but the things he needs to improve on are teachable — shortening up his swing with 2 strikes, being more selective, etc.

            And the K and BB percentages at High-A are inflated and deflated because of his terrible start to the year. By the time of his promotion, he was walking and striking out at a league-average rate. If he can do that at AA and eventually the bigs, he has a chance to reach his ceiling, which is as high or higher than any prospect out there, Profar included.

            • chirogerg

              Baez does have a very high ceiling, but it simply cannot compare with those of Buxton, Taveras, Bundy, and Cole

              • mjhurdle

                i would think, if simply talking about ceilings, Baez is compare-able to any of those prospects.
                If he controls his K’s, walks more, hit 280ish with +power while playing a MI position, i think he might even be more valuable, due to position value, than someone like Tavares, unless Taveras can learn CF like the Cards have been trying to teach him.

              • http://bleachernation.com someday…2015?

                I think that’s incorrect. Hypothetically if Baez reached his max potential he would be a gold glove SS that hits 30+ HRs a year with about a .280 avg. Since SS is such a highly regarded position in the minors along with Javy’s power tool being rare, Baez could easily have as high of a ceiling as any player in the minors.

                His floor is another story. Other then Bundy(TJS) every name you listed is probably a safer bet then Baez.

                • Serious Cubs Fan

                  Agree with Baez high upside with the bat, I think Baez’s max upside in the field at SS is average or at the very max slightly above average. I he moved over to 3rd thats a different story

                • chirogerg

                  Saying that Baez’s max potential is gold glove D at short is just ridiculous. He may have the ability to play short adequately, but the probability of a gold glove happening is so minuscule. Baez playing gold glove defense has about the same probability as the Cubs making the playoffs last year. I see Baez’s ceiling even a little taller offensively, but Buxton’s realistic ceiling is Mike Trout with a 70 arm and maybe a bit less power. Taveras too. All 3 of Taveras, Baez, and Buxton have similar power potential, all three play premium positions, all have 60-70 future hit tools, but Buxton has actual gold glove potential. While I could see Buxton as the best player in baseball in 7 years, I can’t see Baez being that. You wouldn’t say Tulo is the best player today, and Baez’s ceiling is considerably lower defensively and similar offensively.

                  • Serious Cubs Fan

                    Agreed

                  • Dustin S

                    You are correct on the gold glove for Baez. I’ve seen enough of him this year to see that defensively that just isn’t too likely. His ceiling for D is average at best at SS, and even that would take some improvement to get to. Like Castro he makes some highlight plays, but he also flubs a lot of routine plays.

                    Castro/Alcantara/Baez (and Lake, if you still count him as a SS) are all 30+ error a year guys defensively. Between the bunch I’d probably put Alcantara at short in the field if given my choice. He at least seems generally more solid than the others on the routine plays. Although Profar would probably look like Ozzie Smith by comparison.

              • praying the cubs get ready to win

                What about Garza and Gregg to Baltimore for Bundy?

                • chirogerg

                  The O’s knows not to do that

    • bbmoney

      Just making the show at 20 is kind of a big deal. So there’s that.

    • ScottK

      I thought OBP carried over from the minors better than most other offensive stats? To agree with doc, I believe this is because it’s more of an innate skill than a taught one, so it transfers with a player throughout their career. This would make Profar a very valuable prospect because he plays a prime position and at a very young age has demonstrated he has one of the most important natural offensive skills. Things like power can be developed.

      To me Isaac you’re undervaluing defense at SS. I think comparing Baez and Profar would be much more contentious if Baez was an above-average defender. Then we’d basically be comparing power and OBP, which would be tough!

  • Deacon

    Amen, Isaac!! Been trying to figure out what the hype is behind Profar for a long time!

  • Andrew kirk

    I know Profar has all the tools of an elite player but the guy has never even batted over 290 in the minors. Power numbers are average at best. I see a good prospect but not best in baseball. Maybe I’m missing something?

    • Isaac

      I question whether he actually has all of the tools to be an an elite player. Perhaps an elite defender, but he strikes me as a .270/.350/.750, 15 SB, 12 HR offensive player. Nice player, yes. Superstar, no. Give me Baez’ upside all day!:-)

    • Drew7

      1) Batting average is a bad indicator of offensive ability.
      2) Shown really good bat-control with an above average BB-rate and a below average K-rate.
      3) Position scarcity (middle-infielder that can hit).

      The biggest thing: he’s putting up these numbers while being *way* young for the levels he’s been at. He’s an elite prospect, no doubt about it.

      • DocPeterWimsey

        Also, Profar has been young in the leagues in which he’s played. Remember, Profar is 3 months younger than Baez, but Profar has been playing one or two leagues above Baez. (Age is very important to consider when comparing stats from minor league levels, or even MLB stats)

        • DocPeterWimsey

          Whoops: I see that you covered that in the last line. My bad….

          • Isaac

            I appreciate the input, but I feel your point number two makes my point exactly. He is the consensus number one prospect in baseball because of good bat control and above-average K/BB ratio? Not buying. I completely disagree you can’t teach plate discipline, I’d argue it’s mental and one of the easiest things to teach. Now POWER, that is almost impossible to teach. I especially do not like Profar’s splits, as well as his SB/CS ratio. Of course, I reiterate that Garza for Profar is laughable, and probably shouldn’t have been mentioned.

            Profar – top 50? Yes! number one? No way.

            • DocPeterWimsey

              Name a player who has learned plate discipline. Then, for added challenge, name a second.

              It’s not mental: it is basic tool. Guys with good batting eyes know where the pitch is going to cross the plate (or there abouts) when it’s 10′ from the pitcher’s hand. There is no way to practice this: you get your 3-5 PAs against live pitching every day, and that is that.

              As for power, that is much easier to teach as it is in part approach. Guys can sacrifice contact for power: K’s increase, but so do extra-base hits. And, of course, a 20-year old is going to gain power naturally: remember, these guys are in the weight room 48-50 weeks a year, and a 20-year old male is still filling out, anyway.

              So, to get back, Profar is the consensus #1 because he’s going to be an OBP machine with plus pop at a position with the lowest run-creation in the game. (Oh, and he’ll save a few runs with his glove, too.)

              • Isaac

                But just take a step back and consider that you are saying there will be a period in time where a guy with average power, average hit tool, and average speed will be considered the best player in baseball? Sorry, we aren’t living in the same world…sounds like Ben Zobrist to me (who I love, by the way). OBP is very important, but choosing one thing a guy does well and anointing him “the best” is a stretch.

                • DocPeterWimsey

                  Wait, who said anything about Profar becoming the best player in baseball? The expectation is that he’ll be best of the guys who are currently considered prospects: but that says nothing about him catching Harper or Trout.

                  Where did you get the idea that Profar had average speed? It’s above average. Also, and I have to repeat it, so is his power. When a 19-year old puts up his numbers in AA ball, and when that 19-year old plays plus SS (as opposed to, say, average LF), then you’ve got a guy who probably will contribute more to an MLB team’s run-differential than any of the other minor-leaguers his age.

                  We actually are going to have an interesting competition for “best SS” in the near future. Profar, Machado, Boegart and Lindor could provide fans with healthy debate for many years. (I’m forgetting one or two guys, too: but it’s been a long day…)

                  • Isaac

                    Sorry, *one of.

                    Same thing applies to speed as your positional reference to power. His speed is average for a MIF. His SB success rate leaves a little to be desired. I’d be surprised if he ever swipes 30 bags.

                    • Drew7

                      If he gives you above-average power, OBP, and defense uup-the-middle, I’m more than OK with him not swiping 30 bags.

                    • DocPeterWimsey

                      SB are a lousy indicator of speed. From what I’ve read, Profar takes an extra base quite easily (and his triples numbers would corroborate that) and he gets to first base quickly. Those skills will generate runs even if he never steals a base. (SB are the single most over-rated stats by position player, anyway.)

                      This also affects his fielding: Profar has excellent range and the arm to take advantage of it.

                      Again, look at Profar’s AA numbers. A 19-year old SS putting up those numbers in low A would draw some attention. Doing it at AA draws a lot of attention.

                    • hansman1982

                      “(SB are the single most over-rated stats by position player, anyway.)”

                      THIS. For most players, attempting to steal bases takes runs away from their teams. There is incredibly little impact on the pitcher when a speedster is on first.

                      They are like bunts. Some guys (Campana and the pitchers) should steal or bunt, but everyone else should just not do it.

                  • hansman1982

                    Machado has a similar piss-poor batting eye as Baez, just a MUCH better contact ability.

                    • DocPeterWimsey

                      Machado did walk over 10% of the time as a minor leaguer. So, his low walk rate in MLB has been a little surprising. I suspect that he’ll regress to more respectable walk numbers with time.

                      Of course, the question is, will he ever move back to SS? He’s played 3rd well, and people seem to get the idea that once a guy leaves SS, then he can never go back.

                    • hansman1982

                      True, his A+ BB and K rates put Baez to shame.

                    • http://cubsdailyrecaps.blogspot.com Jason P

                      I don’t think Baez has a bad batting eye; just a bad approach. And even that has improved significantly.

                    • hansman1982

                      With every big prospect that has a significant flaw there is an excuse. Baez has over a season’s worth of MiLB AB’s that prove it’s his batting eye.

                      Now, it’s possible his changed approach lead to his last 150 PA of good BB/K is a new and improved Baez but the next 100 PA in AA will be very interesting.

                      I strongly suspect Baez is traded this winter.

                    • Jason P

                      Batting eye and approach are 2 entirely different things. And 1 is hardly an excuse for the other. Both can cause K problems, but approach is much more correctable.

                    • Rebuilding

                      What if his batting eye AND approach are bad? As you have seen with Castro this year you can change the approach all you want, but if you can’t tell whether a ball is a strike or not it really doesn’t matter

                    • Jason P

                      Then that would be a problem. But I don’t think Baez has a bad eye.

            • Justin

              Plate discipline/patience is by far the hardest thing to teach a player. Pretty much you either have it or you don’t. And the whole age vs. league thing is huge when measuring players and prospects. What players like Oscar Taveras and Profar are doing at their age in the minors is 100% why they are studs and top 3 prospects. When a guy hits 38 homers at 28 in AAA like Lahairm it doesn’t matter. But when a guy is above average at everything in AA and 19 yrs old, that dude has stud written all of over him.

            • Jim L

              You know who was taught POWER – HOFer Ryne Sandberg!

              • DocPeterWimsey

                Ryno was certainly taught how to use his power: Frey got him to sacrifice contact for power. That also got his walk rate back up to his minor league levels: because he wasn’t putting the first strike into play nearly as often, Ryno started going deeper into counts. In a way, it was “selective aggression” before people called is such. (Earl Weaver called it “how to stay on the Orioles.”)

                However, in the early 1980’s, there were still people who thought that a middle infielder’s one job when batting was to not strike out…..

            • Funn Dave

              “Now POWER, that’s almost impossible to teach.”

              Duh, steroids.

          • Drew7

            And they say wisdom oft comes from the mouth of bots…

            • DocPeterWimsey

              And flame comes out of my shiny metal ass, too!

      • Mr. B. Patient

        Isn’t batting average about 70% of what makes up OBP? Doesn’t batting average make up the entirety of slugging percentage?

        Batting average is only part of what makes up offensive ability, but it can’t be ignored.

        • Hansman1982

          Batting average is the worst triple slash stat in terms of correlation to runs scored. Batting average has the fatal flaw of weighing a home run the same as an infield single.

          It is a tool that tells a portion of the story of a baseball player’s abilities. Carlos Pena is a champion of why BA own a very useful tool. Despite a criminally low BA he was always able to post an average or better OBP.

          • Mr. B. Patient

            Read my last sentence. BA is not everything, but shouldn’t be ignored.
            When using BA as part of OBP, your fatal flaw is moot. It doesn’t matter what kind of hit it is. Slugging percentage adjusts for that.

            Look up all the players who currently have an OPS of 800 or above. What percent have bad BA’s? Like under 260.

            • hansman1982

              I’ll be honest, I misread your initial post.

              I don’t disagree with you, we just used different words to say the same thing.

              • sans

                Your words just happened to make a lot less sense.

                • hansman1982

                  BAZINGA!

      • mjhurdle

        while i agree that Profar has some great tools, the road to successful baseball careers is littered with players that had tools and talent and still didn’t make it.
        It is way too early to say things like “he will be an OBP machine with plus pop”
        he is still a prospect. he *might* become an OBP machine with plus pop, he has the talent. But right now, he is not, and to assume that some magical transformation will occur is ignoring baseball history.
        I agree he should be the best prospect, due to his great defense (that alone can justify a roster spot (looking at you Barney…)) and the fact that he has perhaps the best chance at realizing his ceiling.
        Not sure i would trade him for Baez. I would have at the start of the year, but the more Baez continues to adjust and perform in AA, the more i prefer what Baez can give as opposed to the difference between Castro and Profar.

    • Mark S

      I think his floor is much, much higher than most of the other top prospects in MiLB. His floor is probably an average offensive SS/2B with very good defense.

  • Andrew kirk

    I’d rather have Perez personally

  • Crockett

    Ok, guys…not trying to fan flames. About 5pm mountain time, my friend in Minnesota texted that they are hearing that a deal is “done”. He never gives specifics to me, but did say he thought I’d be “happy” with the return.

    • http://Isa Voice of reason

      I have a friend in Minnesota who is friends with your friend and my friend told me that your friend is an idiot.

      • Carew

        Why you gotta be like that

        • Whiteflag

          Just ignore it, Carew.

        • http://Isa Voice of reason

          Who comes onto a message board and says that they have a friend in Minnesota?

          I mean, is your friend a plumber, a massage therapist, a dog trainer?

          And, your friend doesn’t give you specifics?

          There are so many strange posts on this site, but that one means nothing and is insignificant and isn’t worthy of taking the time to type.

          • Jp3

            Wheww someone is cranky this evening…

          • Crockett

            You have missed my previous posts. A very good friend of mine works in the Minnesota front office.

          • Jp3

            All the BS Garza rumors flying around VOR you should have been ready for this when you hit enter on bleachernation.com.

          • Whiteflag

            Crockett has been around awhile, he has connection in the Minnesota front office. He is similar to Assman. He’s not always right, but has a good track record of providing insight on trades.

            • DocPeterWimsey

              It might be better to say that what our friends with sources report does not always come to fruition: after all, for every deal that happens, it’s obvious that dozens are discussed. Only one team will get Garza, but it’s almost certain that multiple teams are trying to get Garza. Thus, multiple stories are “true” right now. Which one will *come true* remains to be seen: but, just as on The Highlander, there can be only one.

              (Hint: it’s the Robot.)

              • Whiteflag

                True. Just read Docs post.

              • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

                This cannot be emphasized too much this time of year.

                • Isaac

                  Brett –

                  Longtime reader, first time posting. Great, great work. I can’t emphasize enough how much I appreciate the job you do here. I plan on being an active participant moving forward. Thank you for your outstanding efforts.

                  Isaac

                • DocPeterWimsey

                  In Garza’s honor, we should dub it Schrödinger’s Cat’s Pajamas…..

              • Crockett

                This is 100% right. I was told by this same friend that Garza was “traded” and it was “definitely final” last year two days before Garza’s arm fell off. So even though he IS well connected, the information isn’t always flowing accurately to third parties…even those inside the ropes, so to speak.

                • Tim

                  Can we expect to wake up tomorrow and see a deal announced? And what team is he being dealt to? I don’t like the idea of the “quantity” package from the Rangers. I want quality over quantity

                  • CubsFaninMS

                    SURPRISE! Garza goes to Dodgers for Carlos Marmol and Ian Stewart.

                    I think we would all call in sick the next day!

                • Jim L

                  Why did they wait, if the deal was final? Waiting on physicals?

                  • Justin

                    Teams aren’t suppose to announce big things like a huge trade just before or during the all-star game Selig freaks out. I really hope that the Cubs used the hammer of the qualifying offer to get Garza to agree to an extension with Texas or whoever. If he got extended obviously the return will be so much better. It really is a pretty big hammer..

          • mjhurdle

            “There are so many strange posts on this site, but that one means nothing and is insignificant and isn’t worthy of taking the time to type”

            yet somehow it was significant enough to take the time to make a snide comment back to?

            • Jp3

              That’s why I said he may be a little irritable, VOR should know the rumor mill is a bottomless Pitt right now. Maybe someone Dutchovened him😀

              • Drew7

                The maddening effects of a Dutch-oven cannot be overstated.

          • DarthHater

            Who comes onto a message board and call himself “Voice of reason?”

            • Kyle

              Who calls himself Darth hater?

              Signed,
              The Crushing Fist of Logic

              • hansman1982

                Seriously, you’re too dense to realize your name is Kyle? Jesus, next thing we know, you’ll be trashing the FO.

              • DarthHater

                [img]http://cdn.memegenerator.net/instances/400x/24523619.jpg[/img]

    • college_of_coaches

      Nice, now I can’t sleep. Thanks Crockett!

    • Jimmy James

      If his name is Tubbs I am sold

  • Whiteflag

    You didn’t just fan flames. I think you added 6 gallons of kerosene.

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

    Right now, as long as the Blue Jays and Indians are fighting to match the quantity the Rangers are offering, I’m just anxious to see what we get.

  • Carew

    Can they make announcements tomorrow or is it until Thursday?

  • Jp3

    I think tomorrow anytime, game is over by then and the season marches on. I’m hoping for a 9am breaking news story.

    • Carew

      Cool. Thank you

      • Jp3

        Not a problem, I think if a deal got done over the break there will definetly be leaning by tomorrow morning sometime. Of course theo/Jed have 6 more days to wheel and deal before Garza’s next start so who knows.

        • Jp3

          Leaning=leaking. Dang it

  • jeff1969

    Any opinions on maybe the Red Sox coming in with an offer of Cecchini & Ranaudo for Garza? I probably spelled both names wrong. Theo drafted both of them. Would that be acceptable to either side?

  • Hansman1982

    Wow, so a possible return of Profar for Garza and people aren’t happy. Damn the actual trade is going to seriously piss folks off.

    • Crockett

      This x100.

      • turn two

        Infinity times infinity

        • Jono

          Infinity to the infinite power! [Gasp]

          • hansman1982

            Infinity X 10^Infinity + 1

            • Jono

              Jerk

    • Isaac

      Dramatically missing the point(s)….

      1) Deal is never happening
      2) Profar is overrated (in my opinion)

      • Drew7

        1) That’s his point: one that *is* realistic is obviously gonna leave some people disappointed.

        2) When you’re the #1 prospect in the league, it’s kinda hard to be underrated.

      • hansman1982

        1. I know this, Texas would need to be severely drunk to do this deal.
        2. The dude is in MLB at the age of 20. In AA ball, over a year younger than Baez, he had a statistically similar (.006 points lower) than Baez had in A+ ball.
        3. THE DUDE IS IN MLB AT THE AGE OF 20.
        4. This offensive production of Javier Baez but with a GOOD glove at SS.

        Profar for Garza would be a severely lopsided trade and we should be begging the Rangers to do it. (Wait, we learned earlier today that front offices float deals to get fan buy-in so we should say this is a terrible deal)

    • ssckelley

      Reminds me of the day people were all pissed off Bryant signed.

      :D

  • Tremendous Slouch

    Jose Tabata for Scheirholtz… get er done!

  • Stogie

    I predict we get three pitchers: one from AA, two from A. Maybe it’s just the cynic in me that comes from 26 yrs as a Cubs fan. If I were the FO, I wouldn’t accept anything less than players who are excelling at AA. This rebuilding will continue at a snail’s pace if we just keep collecting A ball talent.

  • Jorbert Solmora

    I’m gonna guess Garza+Gregg+org. filler for Bauer+Salazar+low A lottery ticket.

    • Serious Cubs Fan

      only way we get Bauer+Salazar is if Garza agrees to sign an extension. Still pretty unlikely because an extension is needed and I don’t think we could twist Cleveland’s arm to give us both

  • Serious Cubs Fan

    On Kap’s new show on WGN, Jeff Wilson of the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram say only major piece Texas is offering is Olt. Supposedly this the prospect expert down in Texas.

    • Serious Cubs Fan

      Texas Ranger fan’s think they’ll only have to give up Olt (very flaud prospect, my opinion) and a B level pitching prospect. I really hope Olt isn’t a center piece in any Garza deal. Yeah he has power and can play solid defense at 3rd but strikes out a ton. No thanks

      • Michael

        He also can walk. I’d love Olt if he were a lefty.

        • Serious Cubs Fan

          Brett Jackson can take walks too but that doesn’t make up for his K rate. Now Olt has more power so it makes up for the K rate a little more then in Jackson’s case

        • Serious Cubs Fan

          Olt can’t hit a right hand hitter to save his life this year. His batting average is sub .200 against righties. His SLG% goes way down as well. I will say he definitely can hit lefties though. But you don’t trade Garza away for a platoon player

    • Serious Cubs Fan
  • Serious Cubs Fan

    Can we seriously stop talking about Profar? People need to get it threw “homer” heads that there is no way he’s coming to the Cubs in a Garza trade! Stop sipping the kool aid people

  • Jono

    Is it logical/legitimate that I will be disappointed if Garza’s return isn’t a pitcher?

    • Jono

      Or centered around a pitcher

  • jpeck

    Wrap that deal up. Olt plus 2 young pitchers with High ceiling. Just remember where you heard it 1st.

  • Rizzofanclub

    I know this deal would not happen but I would trade Garza and Baez for Olt and Profar in a second. The Cubs would get 2 players ready to start contributing this/next year. Lineup in 2014:
    Dejesus
    Castro
    Rizzo
    Soriano (I just don’t see him getting traded)
    Schierholtz
    Olt
    Profar
    saltalamacchia/Castillo

    • Serious Cubs Fan

      If were going to trade Baez, we should trade him for a proven major league player not prospect

      • AD

        I agree. I do not believe that it is good policy to trade someone with Baez’s potential without getting a bonafide major leaguer in return. Although these trades sometimes work, (Rizzo for Cashner) I would not advocate trading potential for potential. Instead, I would rather trade potential for proven talent.

  • ssckelley

    I look at the Rangers contract situations and it does not sound all that crazy they would trade Profar. Beltre is signed through 2016, Kinsler through 2018, and Andrus is signed through 2023.

    • Jp3

      While you’re right that they’re not short on IF help without him, I just think they’d use Profar as more of a chip to trade for a headliner like Stanton or Trout or someone of that nature.

      • ssckelley

        I agree, I would think the Rangers would want more than a rental player. But if there was a contact extension in the mix or the Cubs were including other pieces I could see this deal working. Another thing we have to remember is the Rangers have never won a World Series, if I am a Rangers fan and I think they are only a Garza away from a shot at winning it then I would pull the trigger. These situations are exactly what I hope to see the Cubs in a few years, a talented team with a stacked minor league system.

        Some of you may be to young to remember but the Cubs were in this exact same situation back in 1984, the Cubs were in contention and just needed, what seemed to be, one ace starter to put them over the top. Rick Sutcliffe was the top pitcher available, was 28 years old, and was going to be a free agent after the season. The Cubs went all out and got him but it cost them Joe Carter to get him.

        • CubFan Paul

          This. Texas would definitely give up Profar if Garza agreed to a reasonable extension or at least put the parameters on a potential extension (5-7yrs $70M-$105M). Kaplan, Nightengale, nor Jeff Wilson (Fort Worth Star) mentioned this.

          • MichiganGoat

            Um all this Profar talk was just speculation (that really got legs and everyone ran with it) and Nightengale was quick to retract the rumors as Brett mentioned:

            “UPDATE 2: Nightengale took to Twitter to downplay his comments, and this sounds much more like where we all were before this all came up: “Not sure how this got spun out of control from Show. The #Rangers would like Garza, and Profar is best trade chip, but no idea if any talks.” So, there you. Things are as they were before: Garza ain’t netting Profar, and the Rangers probably aren’t dealing Profar in any deal this month.”

            • Jp3

              Mr Bob was trolling for a few more hits and unfortunately we all took the bait and at least “clicked”.

              • MichiganGoat

                Clicked is fine… that’s their job to get you to click and read them, but to take it seriously is just bad comprehension of the reality.

                • Jp3

                  I clicked but listened to it in the same fashion if listen to a used car salesman on a great deal I’d be an idiot to pass up on a car with no wheels or engine..

                  • MichiganGoat

                    yeah it was pure link-baiting and I’m not upset by it (I am upset that this is where Journalism has to go today to stay relevant and reach the audience (but that’s more of a critique of the audience’s need for fodder)). What I don’t understand is why so many people continue to fall for just junk (again its not Journalism fault- the are feeding what the audience wants). And this is why BN is so wonderful, Brett doesn’t have bosses poking him to get more hits but reporting more scandalous and false-rumors news. We are all better fans because we have a place where reality is what drives the reporting.

                    • CubFan Paul

                      Saying ‘Profar could be in play’ (because he’s a blocked prospect) isn’t link baiting.

                      I’m guessing you didn’t see the CSN interview. Now, people running with what Nightengale said as gospel that Profar is available is idiocy on their part.

                      Big difference yapping goat. :)

                    • bbmoney

                      It’s possible Profar is in play. But not for Matt Garza. So let’s stop the craziness.

                    • MichiganGoat

                      Paul you said:

                      “Texas would DEFINITELY give up Profar if Garza agreed to a reasonable extension or at least put the parameters on a potential extension (5-7yrs $70M-$105M). Kaplan, Nightengale, nor Jeff Wilson (Fort Worth Star) mentioned this.

                      You didn’t say “COULD BE IN PLAY” until just now, there is a HUGE difference between the semantics of “could” and “definitely.” I agree Profar “could be in play” as I’d agree that ANYONE “could be in play” but he is not “definitely” being traded for Garza.

                      Just trying to fully understand the meaning of what is being said here… no more “yapping” on this.

                    • CubFan Paul

                      “COULD BE IN PLAY” was said by Nightengale loosely in those words. I didn’t say that. I loosely quoted.

                      “DEFINITELY give up Profar” is me, because of what I called common sense (Block prospect) that you shot down. that’s all.

          • MichiganGoat

            And where do you get the “DEFINITELY” from?

            • CubFan Paul

              Common Sense. Blocked prospect/Rookie = Trade Bait.

              • MichiganGoat

                See I don’t see where “common sense” comes into to play here. Profar is one of the best prospects in baseball and every team would love to get their hands on him and would offer a better return than a pitcher (regardless of the extension) that has questions about his longevity, is not a number one and on a championship team might only be a 3, and will cost them a ton to keep him away from free agency. The whole blocked position argument is justification we as fans create to lower a prospects value, there are plenty of other options for the Rangers to make to get Profar playing before they just give him away for a 2/3 pitcher that will cost them too much to extend.

                That’s the common sense approach here.

                • Cubbie Blues

                  “That’s the common sense approach here.”

                  Do you see where you went wrong here?

                  • MichiganGoat

                    yeah yeah yeah Cpt. SmartAss ;)

                    • Cubbie Blues

                      Everybody has there role to fill around here. I’m just excited about reaching Cpt.

                    • Jp3

                      Their Capt.

                    • Cubbie Blues

                      I could get used to being called Captain.

                      “O Captain! my Captain! rise up and hear the bells;
                      Rise up—for you the flag is flung—for you the bugle trills”

                      Oh wait, he dies. Never mind.

                    • MichiganGoat

                      Well “O Captain” is for after you die… so yeah you don’t want this poem.

                • Edwin

                  Plus, I’m not sure why the Rangers would want Garza in the first place. If you look at how Garza has pitched in 2012-2013 compared to the arms on the Rangers staff, he’s not much of an upgrade.

                  • CubFan Paul

                    Garza is a huge upgrade over the 5 plus pitchers on the DL (Yu, Ogando, Harrison, Feliz, Lewis).

                    …pesky facts

                    • Edwin

                      Sure. But Darvish, Ogando, and Lewis are all due back in 1-2 weeks. Harrison is due back in late August. Come September, Garza could easily be the 5th starter on that team. I think if the Rangers are looking for insurance for their roation, they might look for something cheaper than what the Cubs will want for Garza.

                    • CubFan Paul

                      Edwin, only 2 of those Ranger pitchers are expected back/being counted on coming back because of injury uncertainty with the others. This is according to Rangers’ beat writers, not me making shit up.

                    • CubFan Paul

                      And settling for something “cheaper” than Garza won’t get them over the hump. They’re 2 games back with injuries not 2 plus games ahead.

                      Garza is seen a #2/#3 starter for them if they acquire him as in, *they say* He’ll be part of the 1-2-3 playoff rotation if they make the Playoffs.

  • Die hard

    Any one of us can spin better trade rumors than all of these media sources being spoon fed morsels from Theo… How’s this one? Barney and Soriano to Yankees for PTBNL and Yankees pay Sorianos salary after this year?

    • EvenBetterNewV2.0

      Not good.

    • MichiganGoat

      BREAKING SPECULATION: Cubs trade Garza, Barney, Gregg to Rangers for Matt Harriston and Adrian Beltre. But the real chip was that the Cubs were able to trade Internet Persona “Die hard” to the Rangers. Texas felt they needed more oddity to their state and forced Nolan to make this trade.

      ####SARCASM FONT#### – for the those that lack basic reading comprehension skills

  • Jp3

    Somebody said it last night on here and I totally agree, whatever we get back for Garza people we be pissed off…much like when Bryant signed😁

    • cjdubbya

      Hansman. And yes, there will be some that are over-the-top angry that the Cubs didn’t get enough, just like there will be some that are over-the-top angry that the Rangers didn’t get enough for giving up some prospects.

      Yay internet overreactions.

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