Obsessive Matt Garza Trade Watch: Cubs and Rangers Free to Date Other People (UPDATES)

matt garza cubsI was simultaneously relieved and annoyed to wake up to no new Matt Garza rumor bits. (Aside: seriously, can you imagine what it must be like to be one of these players involved in incessant rumors? It can’t be easy, and once again, all due praise to Garza for handling it as well as he has.)

But it sounds like, although the nearly-completed Cubs/Rangers deal hit a “snag” last night, the two teams continue to try to make it work today. Jon Heyman reports that there’s still a chance that a deal gets done – presumably this weekend, in advance of Garza’s scheduled start on Monday – between the Cubs and Rangers.

That said, like a high school relationship turned sour, Heyman indicates that the teams understand that they are free to explore other options out there. The Rangers have been rumored to be exploring back-up plans including Bud Norris from the Astros, and the Cubs have been connected to many more teams than the Rangers with respect to Garza.

While the Rangers still make strong sense as a fit for Garza, there are other fish in the sea, as far as the Cubs are concerned. It doesn’t sound like any medical issues that snagged yesterday’s day were on the Cubs’ side, so their asset remains the best on the market.

As far as the Rangers go, there are rumors out there about which prospect is dealing with what “snag”-inducing medical issue (assuming that reports that the issue is on the Rangers’ side to begin with), but I don’t really want to speculate too much about a kid’s health. The Rangers have a deep system, and, although they appear reluctant to part with their elite talent, I suspect they could still put together a competitive package even if one of the original prospects is no longer in the deal. According to T.R. Sullivan this morning, the Rangers are, indeed, looking for a second player from the Cubs in the Garza deal – a player they can control beyond this year. James Russell was mentioned in reports yesterday, and, with two years of control left, he fits that bill. He would also, to my mind, increase the Rangers’ price in this deal significantly.

So, where do we stand? Well, somewhere more advanced than we were on Thursday when reports had the Cubs calling for “best and final” offers. We know that the Cubs and Rangers have had very advanced talks, and essentially came to an agreement before medicals threw up a (temporary?) roadblock. We know that many teams are interested in Garza, and we suspect that the Cubs are still in contact with those teams. I guess it’s back to playing the waiting game.

UPDATE: Word out of Texas (T.R. Sullivan) is that the story is the same: the deal isn’t dead, and it’s being worked on. It might happen, it might not. A non-update, really, but one that still kind of provides a useful confirmation from the Rangers’ side that they still want Garza.

UPDATE 2 (1:32pm CT): Sullivan with another helpful confirmation from the Texas side that, yes, as we’ve heard, the “snag” involved the medicals of a Rangers prospect in the deal. Sullivan’s sources say the medical concern was not major, but was “fair.” Sullivan mentions that, previously, Mike Olt had been dealing with some vision issues earlier this year, and Neil Ramirez has had shoulder issues in the past. The Cubs and Rangers are still working at an alternative deal.

UPDATE 3 (1:44pm CT): Cleveland reporter Matt Loede says that he’s hearing if the Rangers don’t get the deal done for Garza today, it won’t happen at all, “which could open the door for the Indians.” Now, that could be a little bit of wishcasting, or it could be a reflection that the Rangers are going to make the best offer they can, considering the medicals, and that’ll be that before moving on to a back-up plan. For the Cubs’ part, they probably don’t feel quite the same urgency as the Rangers, because there are other suitors out there (like the Indians). That said, if the Cubs felt like the Indians were going to offer a better package than the Rangers right now, would they really be waiting to engage the Indians in serious discussions until after a deal can’t be completed with the Rangers? Put differently, I wonder if the Rangers’ offer (well, range of offers) is clearly superior to the “best and final” offers of other teams, and that’s why the Cubs are still at the table despite their reservations about the medicals.

UPDATE 4 (2:35pm CT): Jeff Wilson says it’s status quo, with no new headway made in the impasse today. The deal, according to Wilson, was indeed Olt, Ramirez, Edwards, and Sardinas for Garza and another Cub (generally believed to be James Russell, but Wilson does not say).

UPDATE 5 (2:38pm CT): Ken Rosenthal just reported on Fox that the A’s are now trying to jump into the Garza fray. That makes sense, as just about any interested team should now be calling the Cubs. Problem is, if you’re an interested team and you know the Cubs found a package they liked (but which was flawed by an injury concern or two), you’re “checking in” to see if the Cubs will take slightly less now to just get the deal done. The Cubs, of course, will hold firm – though the price it’ll take to get the deal done has now widely been reported. That doesn’t necessarily help their position, but they’ve still got the asset that many teams want. Information isn’t going to scuttle their return. (And, if you’re going to have teams jumping in, the A’s might be as good as it gets, since they might provide just a touch more motivation for their divisional counterpart, the Rangers.)

UPDATE 6 (4:43pm CT): Danny Knobler writes that, despite the uncertainty surrounding Clay Buchholz’s return, the Red Sox still aren’t prioritizing acquiring a starting pitcher (they’re focused on a reliever). As I’ve said before, the Red Sox sure would make a nice trading partner for Garza given the Cubs’ familiarity with their system and the large number of high-quality, upper-level pitching prospects they have. But if they aren’t biting, they aren’t biting. This could all be spin to cover up desperation, of course.

UPDATE 7 (5:31pm CT): Bruce Levine says the rumors have slowed, and Garza is busy getting himself ready for Monday’s start.

UPDATE 8 (8:55pm CT): Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer says the Cubs asked for third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall in a deal for Matt Garza (a player to whom the Cubs have been connected in the past), and the Indians declined. I wouldn’t read too much into the Cubs’ pursuit of Chisenhall (or Mike Olt) with respect to him being a young third baseman, and the Cubs having just drafted Kris Bryant. This is about getting talent at a position where the Cubs could stand to immediately install a young player (and maybe shift Luis Valbuena to second, opening up the opportunity to shop Darwin Barney). I am not completely enamored with Chisenhall, so I’m not too broken up by this report. I also understand the Indians’ position, because they likely need Chisenhall as much right now as they need Garza. Which, by the way, is a lot – Hoynes goes to great lengths to discuss just how much the Indians could use Garza. Well, then, step up your offer, boys. Here’s your shot. (Hoynes mentions that the Indians also will likely focus on picking up a lefty reliever at the deadline …. )

Brett Taylor is the editor and lead writer at Bleacher Nation, and can also be found as Bleacher Nation on Twitter and on Facebook.

392 responses to “Obsessive Matt Garza Trade Watch: Cubs and Rangers Free to Date Other People (UPDATES)”

  1. jpeck

    Mike Olt putting on a show for Cubbies in Iowa. 3run HR.

  2. The ambiguously Gay duo Theo&Jed

    If the FO would get their heads out of eachothers asses they should EXTEND GARZA!!!!

    1. Brent

      I am so sick and tired of people demanding that the Cubs extend Garza. Do you people not understand what is going on? Don’t get me wrong, for the RIGHT PRICE, I would love to have Garza signed for the next 5 years. The goal right now is to stockpile the system/organization with as much talent as possible. There is no question, AT ALL, that you trade Garza if the return exceeds or meets your expectations. Period.

      1. DarthHater

        Okay, you actually paid attention to the Unambiguously Lame Douche. That was your first mistake.

        1. Brian Peters

          Darth, you’ve made me laugh again!! You are one funny cat!

      2. Peter

        I totally disagree with that. What are the chances that any of the prospects the cubs get back in a Garza deal turn out to be as good as him? Practically zero.

        1. mjhurdle

          seeing as how Garza’s contract ends this year, i put the chances of prospects that we get for him contributing more to the Cubs organization at dam near 100%.

          1. Peter

            I said as good. The cubs could sign him to an extension or give him a qualifying offer, which would net them a 1st round pick courtesy of whichever team Garza signs with

            1. DarthHater

              It’s not a first round pick. It’s a sub-30 compensation round pick, which means it’s equivalent to a 2nd round pick, which means it has about the same value as a 4th round pick.

              1. Peter

                yeah, equivalent to a late 1st round pick

                1. DarthHater

                  Picks in the 30-35 range are closer in average value to 3rd or 4th round picks than they are to the top few picks of the first round.

                  1. Peter

                    30-35 is hell of a lot better value than 107-136. Stick to your original argument:

                    “It’s not a first round pick. It’s a sub-30 compensation round pick, which means it’s equivalent to a 2nd round pick, which means it has about the same value as a 4th round pick.”

                    Don’t just change it to create one:

                    Picks in the 30-35 range are closer in average value to 3rd or 4th round picks than they are to the top few picks of the first round.

                    1. DarthHater

                      Studies have established that second round picks have the same average value as fourth round picks. Those studies were conducted at a time when the compensation round did not yet exist, which means that the 30s picks now in the compensation round were second round picks at the time. So compensation round picks, like other second round picks, have the same average value as fourth round picks.

                      Also, if you would try using your head for something other than a rectal plug, you might perceive that saying that a compensation round pick has about the same value as a 4th round pick and saying that a 30-35 pick is closer in value to a 4th round pick than it is to the top of the draft are just two different ways of saying approximately the same thing.

              2. Peter

                The compensation picks are referred to as the supplemental 1st round. Sorry for the confusion

                1. waittilthisyear

                  listen, darth, although you have often validated your opinions with citations that make them completely legitimate, i disagree because EXTEND GARZEA AS IF THIS IS MLB2015

              3. Peter

                The compensatory 1st round shouldn’t be underestimated. Players drop every year because of injury concerns. Pierce Johnson, who is now excelling in the minors, is a good example.

                1. Eternal Pessimist

                  Relatively few players in that range become impact major league players. While he is a number two or three pitcher, he is a 2 or 3 with very little team control left. Trading him for several, near major league ready players with many years of control each would be a very good return and smarter long term move. When the Cubs are competitive regularly in the next 2 years or so you will just need to remember what your thought about trading Garza “back then”.

        2. Brian Peters

          Garza is a .500 pitcher. If there’s a chance we can get a couple prospects who can slot in as #1 or #2 pitchers, we need to do it.

          1. ClevelandCubsFan

            We’re not likely going to get #1 or #2 pitchers for Garza. That’s a crap shoot. If a team thought they had a potential #1, under control for years, they wouldn’t ship it out for 2.5 months of Garza.

            But to the original poster, extending Garza at this point is dumb. Trade him on good terms for a haul. Garza seems to want to test free agency. Good for him. He seems to love Chicago, so maybe if we love him too, we go after him in free agency. He’s apparently not giving the Cubs any bargains right now. And this close to an injury, the Cubs want to get a deal on an extension, I’m sure. Take the cache. Worry about the cash later.

            1. X the Cubs fan

              Unless they can’t help in the playoff race.

      3. Mike W

        I am tired of people saying we need to ship Garza! Do you understand the cubs could be a competitive team next year or in 2015?! Why stockpile prospects who may be in the minors for years and never be as effective as a Matt Garza! The cubs have money to spend so if they want to extend his contract they sure can! Stop thinking like a low budget team like the KC Royals. IF the cubs do trade Garza they should be looking at Catchers, Pitching and Outfield. They do not need infielders. They already have Castro and Rizzo. Which leads for 2 spots between Baez, Bryant and Alcantara so infielders should be automatically out.

        1. Cubman23

          In the Cubs current position, you trade for the best talent and then figure out the rest. The only time you want to really focus in on a particular player or position is if you need to add a piece for a playoff run. Pitching talent would be ideal, but we’ll take the best talent that’s offered regardless of where they play.

        2. wvcubsfan

          You do realize that in order for the Cubs to sign Garza to an extension he has to agree to sign said extension, right?

          I haven’t been in the room with the front office or Garza’s agent when these discussions were taking place. However, it’s quite evident that at this point in time the two sides aren’t very close on reaching a mutual agreement.

          Assuming that this is the case, then the best course of action is to trade Garza for a return that is presumably better than a supplemental draft pick.

          Then they have the entire off season to decide whether they would like to pay Garza the amount of money for the number of years that he is requesting. In addition to whatever return they get in the trade.

          1. Luke

            Couldn’t have said it better myself.

            It isn’t just about who is better, Garza or the return. The question is what provides more value to the Cubs – the Garza trade return or the risk of losing Garza to free agency.

            1. Peter

              First of all, the positions of players in the minors mean nothing. Just look at Junior Lake. Secondly, Garza would obviously have to sign an extension to stay with the Cubs. Why is that being brought up? The Cubs have plenty of money to sign Garza. The problem is they see a guy with a wild personality who doesn’t fit in with all the choir boys they want on the team.

              Matt Garza facts:
              29 years old
              throws in mid-upper 90′s
              has playoff experience

              If the Cubs had any sense, they would realize they couldn’t get equal value in a trade for Garza

              1. DarthHater

                “The problem is they see a guy with a wild personality who doesn’t fit in with all the choir boys they want on the team.”

                Where in the hell do you people come up with this horseshit?

                1. Peter

                  Are you just gonna talk shit about other people’s arguments or come up with one yourself?

                  1. DarthHater

                    Just asserting imaginary crap you made up about the FO’s view of Garza does not constitute an argument.

                    1. Eternal Pessimist

                      Beware of the troll sitting. Peter is the new Timmy.

                    2. Jp3

                      Meh… They don’t get any rise out of me, most of the time they’re trying too hard and it falls on deaf ears anyways

                  2. AlwaysNextYear

                    Talking shit, Im sure he has seen the same interviews I have that everybody thinks the world Matt Garza. It’s a valid where in the world did you see that he doesn’t fit in.

                2. Peter

                  “It’s regimen, not regiment.”

                  You are such a doucebag

                  1. DarthHater

                    At least I can spell douchebag.

                  2. Peter

                    By the way, the cubs FO does have a view of the type of people they want on the team. They have said as much. Garza has been heavily criticized for being a hothead throughout his career. Theo Epstein has a history of conflicting with players that have big personalities such as Kevin Millar in Boston.

                    1. Peter

                      You must do well on spelling tests. You should edit webpages when you grow up.

                    2. DarthHater

                      Provide one piece of evidence of any kind of problems between this FO and Garza. Just one.

                    3. AlwaysNextYear

                      This is about the dumbest thing I have read on BN. Congrats Peter

                    4. DarthHater

                      I generally don’t worry about people’s spelling around here, unless they’re being a pompous asshole. But people really should know the difference between the meanings of two completely different words like “regimen” and “regiment.” It wasn’t a typo because the same mistake was made repeatedly. If I didn’t know the proper usage of that word and somebody told me, I would thank them. It might prevent me from fucking up a job interview some day. Alternatively, I could call the guy a “doucebag” and then get back to flipping burgers,.

                    5. DarthHater

                      “This is about the dumbest thing I have read on BN.”

                      Nah, Die hard says much dumber stuff all the time,.

                    6. AlwaysNextYear

                      This is true but you expect it so its different in a way.

                  3. Peter

                    I don’t have to. It’s called making an inference. Also, I’m guessing most feuds between front offices and players aren’t publicized.

                    1. DarthHater

                      Yes, your point is abundantly proved by the fact that their is no evidence to support it.

                      Now that IS about the dumbest thing I have read on BN.

                    2. Cubman23

                      You “don’t have to” have evidence to prove your argument? I think you’re confused.

                  4. Peter

                    What I’m saying aren’t facts. They’re opinions. We’re arguing about things that cannot be proved

                    1. AlwaysNextYear

                      Oh opinions I see. So pretty much making shit up.

                    2. Peter

                      If everyone is this offended by my thoughts, don’t read them.

                    3. DarthHater

                      You can’t make a factual statement about the FO’s views of Garza and just call it your opinion. They either have those views or they don’t.

                      I have no information from which to know whether or not you like ice cream. But if I just go ahead and assert that you hate ice cream and then defend myself by saying, “Well, that’s my opinion,” then I’m being an idiot.

                    4. Cubman23

                      Well when you say this…

                      “The problem is they see a guy with a wild personality who doesn’t fit in with all the choir boys they want on the team.”

                      …and then people say that it’s untrue, and you can’t come up with any support or evidence for why it is true, then you probably shouldn’t even say it. You’re right that there are things to argue about that can’t be proved, but this isn’t one of them.

                    5. D.G.Lang

                      Opinions are like ***holes, everyone has them and most of them are full of stinky stuff.

                  5. Peter

                    Everything on here is an opinion

                    1. AlwaysNextYear

                      No it’s not. I can clearly say with a certainty that your not the brightest crayon in the box. That’s a fact not a opinion clearly by what you have said tonight.

                    2. DarthHater

                      Look, Peter, I would also rather see the Cubs extend Garza than trade him for a bunch of guys who have only a chance of being not quite as good as Garza. I had a little exchange with hansman about that point yesterday. However, I also accept the fact that there is a point at which Garza’s contractual demands could be high enough that extending him would not be the right choice. Even if the Cubs have enough money to pay whatever he wants (which may or may not be true), it still might make more sense for them to spend that money on someone else. And if they decide that spending the money on a Garza extension is not the right choice, then at that point, the only sensible thing to do is to trade Garza for as much value as you can get for him.

                    3. mjhurdle

                      not everything is an opinion. there are plenty of facts being thrown around by people as well.
                      to say something crazy, and then act aghast that people would question it because ‘it is only an opinion” is naivety at its highest.
                      Opinions come in many varieties. But usually, the opinions shared on message boards are designed to either sway someone else’s opinion, or validate one own’s line of thinking.
                      In this area, using facts provides immense value to one’s opinion.
                      Me saying the sun will not rise tomorrow is an opinion. Me saying that the fact that Junior Lake has performed so well his first two games warrants a start tomorrow as well is also an opinion.
                      one of them can be supported by facts, the other cannot. One would be ridiculed, the other at least entertained.

              2. Justin

                I got 2 words for why teams are scared to give up much for a rental, JEAN SEGURA, The Angels didn’t even make the playoffs with Greinke, I think the figured out a way to find a trade worse than the Vernon Wells deal they did a few yrs ago..

              3. Peter

                And yes, nothing on this page can be proved

                1. Cubman23

                  Replace ‘on this page’ with ‘written by Peter’ and you’re right!

                  1. Peter

                    I’m sorry if you guys are offended. I can’t prove my thoughts and therefore can’t make you guys believe what I do. But, nothing on this page can be proved because nobody here is Theo Epstein. I will argue about that all night.

                2. DarthHater

                  Value judgments cannot be proved or disproved. Factual statements can.

                  1. mjhurdle

                    wait, is this another opinion? or a factual statement?
                    dammit, now im all confused!!
                    or maybe my confusion is just another opinion of my own state of mind, and thus not provable…

                    1. DarthHater

                      It’s a transcendental judgment of pure reason. :-P

                  2. Peter

                    How old are you Darth?

                    1. DarthHater

                      Too old to be up this late, my friend.

                  3. Peter

                    How about a number?

                    1. DarthHater

                      3,467. That’s my opinion and you can’t disprove it.

                  4. Peter

                    I’m 3,467-3,455. That’s a fact.

                    1. AlwaysNextYear

                      So your 12. Shouldn’t you be in bed

                  5. Peter

                    I don’t have a bed time. do you?

                  6. Peter

                    I got back from Europe this afternoon and slept from 2pm to 10pm.

              4. Luke

                Why do the arguments in favor of signing Garza to an extension always seem to assume that Garza wants to avoid free agency?

                It doesn’t matter if the Cubs want to extend Garza as much as they have ever wanted anything, if Garza wants to test free agency (and there are reports that he does), then he won’t sign the extension.

                Sure, the Cubs could offer him such an absurdly large amount that he’d be foolish to turn it down, but the Cubs would be foolish to offer an absurdly large amount in the first place. Any deal the Cubs offer should be for roughly market value, and in that case Garza is more than justified in becoming a free agent and enjoying that process.

                1. mjhurdle


                2. Justin

                  All I am saying is that Garza will enjoy the free agency process a lot more if a qualifying offer wasn’t tagged to him. If I am the Cubs I completely use that pick as leverage on him. I really think it would screw his value a ton, maybe even by 40%. Teams that pick 10-20 would be out on him. Teams that are in the top 10 arent going to drop major coin on him anyway, so that cuts his market a lot.

                  1. Eternal Pessimist

                    If Garza can’t be traded for prospects expected to be better than the compensation pick from giving him a qualifying offer they won’t trade him.

                    Oh, by the way, if he gets injured right before he hits free agency what would you do? Give him a qualifying offer that no one would match, so you’ve missed the prospects from a trade and the compensation pick? How does that fit into your rebuilding strategy?

                    You continue to assume the FO didn’t already try to get him to accept a reasonable offer that takes into account the risks of injury, etc…

          2. Justin

            But if the Cubs are holding a qualifying offer over Garza they would blow up his free agent value. Their contract offers may not look that bad if the other teams have to give their 1st rd pick AND pay Garza a ton..

    2. Brian

      It is my opinion that the proper application of the word proved being thrown around here is proven. By stating this on this page i have proven my opinion to be fact. So atleast one opinion on this site is a proven fact.

  3. Eternal Pessimist

    So thirsty for….update….update…update….uggghhhhh……..PLOP.

  4. figgelbert

    Just read Rangers are still in on Garza,Oakland contacted Cubs about him,and Red sOX ARE IN PLAY
    8 teams have contacted Cubs about Garza

    1. Dean

      Where did you see that?

      1. figgelbert

        Hot stove cubbies twitter was one place.
        They carry alot of peoples twitter posts there
        I like to browse
        Rosenthal said A’s have contacted Cubs

  5. Kramden

    I see DeJesus is rehabbing and in the lineup at Boise tonite. Also nice to see Hannemann back and Alamo getting the start at catcher.

  6. Jp3

    I can’t see the game tonight so someone let me know if the Bro-Hugs start. I think there is no chance we want to run Garza out there for one more start… Too much to lose..

  7. The ambiguously Gay duo Theo&Jed

    If the FO was good our line up would look like this 1.Trout 2.Harper 3.Posey 4.Stanton 5.Tulo 6.Votto 7.Machado 8. Phillips…..Rotation of 1.Verlander 2. Kershaw 3. Strasburg 4. Price 5. Harvey….closer Kimbrel….make it happend

    1. Serious Cubs Fan

      Ok Yankees fan

      1. The ambiguously Gay duo Theo&Jed

        If I were a yankee fan I would want Gary Gaetti

      2. Headscratchin

        Is this really Timmy?? Same Shtick, different name???

    2. mjhurdle

      if we are going for the best lineups ever, can we drop Phillips and Stanton and get good players instead?

      1. wvcubsfan

        and why cheap out on the closer as well? let’s get the mutation of Mo and Chapman.

    3. Brian Peters

      You, sir, are a dumbass.

      1. MichiganGoat


        1. Brian Peters

          I lost my head again, Goat. You’re absolutely right.

  8. Kevin

    If Garza really wants to stay with the Cubs he would already be signed. I guess 5/75 or 80 is too low. I wish him the best and can’t fault the FO for not trying.

    1. The ambiguously Gay duo Theo&Jed

      Garza stated he wants to stay with Cubs they offered him EJax money not what u said this FO is just trying to run it cheap

  9. Rafael Rodgers

    If the Cubs don’t get a good offer now then lets keep him. This pitching staff is actually doing decent and if it weren’t for the blown saves we may be buyers instead of sellers. If the deal is good then pull the trigger. We still in the running for Miguel A. Gonzales? May work out who knows.

  10. Michael

    What do A’s have that we want? No familiar with their farm!

    1. wvcubsfan

      Pitchers, Sonny Gray would be a good start.

      1. Michael

        Is there anyone else that catches the eye?

        1. wvcubsfan

          Can’t remember anyone else. I hear quite a bit about their AA team because the Angels AA team is here in Little Rock and I keep up with them on a half way regular basis.

          1. Michael

            I know we don’t need a shortstop but Addison Russell would be nice!!

            1. Michael

              Also do you think we could get Jameson Taillon from the Pirates?

              1. bbmoney

                I really doubt it. I doubt Russell just as much.

              2. Luke

                Not a chance on Taillon.

        2. Jeff K

          I wouldn’t mind targeting a couple of these guys:
          1. Michael Choice (OF, AAA) – .291/.382/.427
          2. Michael Taylor (OF, AAA) – .305/.370/.511
          3. Sonny Gray (RHP, AAA) – 2.82 ERA, 102 IP, 107/34 K/BB
          4. Michael Ynoa (RHP, A+) – 3.47 ERA, 62 IP, 56/22 K/BB (between A and A+)

          1. Michael


          2. wvcubsfan

            Do we really want to have Mike Taylor commenting on Brett Taylor’s blog about Michael Taylor? Talk about confusing.

          3. Cub Fan in Hickory(Mike S)

            Taylor is the quintessential AAAA guy, I will pass on him. Unless a deal includes Addison Russel or Sonny Gray I dont think the A’s have good enough prospects to come close to the Rangers offer.

            1. Cub Fan in Hickory(Mike S)

              and I dont see them including Russel or Gray so Id count the A’s out. They would be more likely to include Straily as the centerpiece

            2. Jeff K

              Agreed. I don’t see the A’s as a good match.

  11. Kevin

    As #2/3 starter how much could Garza realistically expect as a free agent? I’m not saying he’s asking too much, just want to know what others think.

  12. Michael

    Not** but also was wondering maybe a bidding war between A’s and Rangers?

  13. Michael

    Indians pitcher Corey Kluber exited with injury…. Garza!!??

  14. Mike F

    Paul Sulliivan has an interesting update. Appears at least some if the issue is Mike Olt. He had a concussion in winter ball and that appears to be connected to some of the eye problems. Leads to questions of whether the FO just was shaky on value of the whole deal, I know I would be, too much for too little.

  15. Njriv

    They should tell the Indians it’s either Bauer or Salazar. If not, don’t even bother, keep walking.

    1. Cubman23

      I strongly urge people to do some digging on Trevor Bauer. We all love to bash Towers, but they were popping champagne when the Dbacks unloaded him. Bauer’s got serious command issues (his K/BB ratio is not pretty – 2.5 in AA and 2.3 in AAA) and that’s something that a power pitcher doesn’t usually just ‘figure out’. He’s apparently very arrogant as well: won’t listen to coaches, insists on his own special training regiment, etc. The guy is in absolute freefall right now and I would wait to kick the tires until after they see where he lands.

      1. Luke

        I haven’t been able to watch as many Bauer starts as I’d like, but from what I have seen I’m not convinced he lacks command. I think he doesn’t trust his stuff. Instead of attacking the strike zone and letting his pitches get people out (and they’re good enough to do it) he is nibbling the edges and then trying to make a perfect pitch. That generally results in hitters camping on a particular offering, and that seems to be the pattern with Bauer.

        I’m not convinced he’ s a head case based on reports from Arizona either. I think they rushed Bauer to the majors much too quickly and most of the rest of their problems with him stim from that.

        If the Cubs could land him, keep in mind that they have in Derek Johnson one of the better pitching talent developers around. Put Bauer under Johnson’s tutelage for a year and I suspect he’ll start to resemble the ace he was thought to be when he was drafted.

        In terms of raw stuff, though, Bauer is still one of the best (if not the best) pitching prospect in baseball. Cleveland would be desperate to dump him for Garza so soon.

        1. Jp3

          I thought you were going to say lacks… Belly fire

        2. Cub Fan in Hickory(Mike S)

          Its not that he doesnt trust his pitches, he doesnt trust his catcher. He likes to shake everything off and call his own game. The kid has top notch stuff but needs to be coached up before his ego gets the best of him.

          1. Luke

            He sometimes doesn’t trust his catcher either, but that doesn’t explain his repeated efforts to nibble and attempt the perfect pitch.

            I’d love to see what he could do in a game in which he attacked every hitter, didn’t care about strikeout totals, and just tried to get hitters out as quickly and with as few pitches as possible. I suspect the results, even in a minor league game, might be enough to knock Tebow off Sportscenter.

            1. Cub Fan in Hickory(Mike S)

              yeah with the stuff he has, you’re definitely right, he should be in attack mode.

            2. Cubman23

              No doubt Luke they probably would and the Cubs brass isn’t coming to me for my opinion. But I’m probably not the only one who isn’t very comfortable with getting a guy whose stats say can’t consistently find the zone, but who has awesome ‘stuff’. That feels like a move the 1990 Cubs would make. The Tyler Colvin ‘toolsy’ guys that look really awesome but can’t get on base. It reminds me of a scene from the beginning of the movie Moneyball. I bet the old scouting dudes around that table would love Trevor Bauer.

              Maybe I’m playing it too safe. Plus, you could always flip Bauer to somebody else too.

        3. Cubman23

          Good thoughts Luke. A lot of what you’re saying makes sense because it seems like he really regressed after his cup of coffee in AZ. When he went back down to AAA after that, he was much worse.

          If he’s nibbling or looking for the perfect pitch that’s concerning, but not a career-ender. On the other hand, some people are suggesting that his stuff has always been electric but his command has always been spotty – that he has been reliant on electric stuff out of the zone that fools only inexperienced hitters. That’s a game-over situation.

          It would be scary for the Cubs to hang the centerpiece of the Garza trade on a plummeting prospect and as you said Cleveland probably wouldn’t include him as the only piece, let alone one of several pieces. Sometimes when these guys get really bounced around you can’t put the cork back in the bottle. Not Bauer’s fault, but very scary for the Cubs.

          1. Luke

            Put it this way – if Cleveland offered Bauer for Garza straight up the Cubs should take Matt to a store and buy him an Indians hat on the way to airport.

            Bauer is literally the only player mentioned in connection with any Garza deal that would take over the top spot in the Top 40.

          2. Tobias

            Bauer’s stuff has never been in question. I moved out to AZ last July when Bauer was brought up and some of the concerns they had with Bauer was that he wanted to do things his way. Arizona wanted him to get on a pitching regiment, but he insisted that he wanted to do the regiment his way and not that of the pitching coach or manager.

            1. DarthHater

              It’s regimen, not regiment.

              1. Leopold B. Stoch

                “Regiment” is a perfectly cromulent word.

        4. Eternal Pessimist

          2.5 K to BB is bad???

      2. mjhurdle

        Just my opinion, but i think the whole ‘Bauer attitude problem” is more about Miguel Montero and Kirk Gibson not knowing how to deal with his style of young player than him being that bad.
        Bauer is very confident, to the point it could be considered arrogant. But he knows his stuff. he has videos that document and explain every aspect of his pitching motion, what it is supposed to accomplish, and how he tries to ensure he repeats it consistently.
        Before he was drafted, he told teams that he would not change his entire regimen unless they convinced him there was a solid reason.
        he dominated the minors (2012 ARI Minor League Pitcher of the Year i believe) and didn’t run into problems until hitting the bigs where Gibson immediately tried to change everything about him.
        Montero is an nobody catcher that was feeling great about his one great year and All Star appearance that got his feelings hurt when Bauer dared to think he might know what pitches to throw in a given spot.
        Montero has gone on record criticizing a variety pf players, most recently Puig. Montero is that blowhard that loves the attention his “old school” statements get him.

        None of this means that Bauer will end up good, or that he isn’t a bit arrogant. Rather, i am just saying that, in my opinion, this is all blown out of proportion.

    2. Jed Jam Band

      I am of the mind that if they offer Bauer, that’s the deal we make. I know a lot of people have a problem with Bauer for some reason, but I don’t get it. Look, wanting to stick to a routine that has made you successful and that you are comfortable with is not silly at all. Every player is different and it is simply wrong to try and make a prospect fit your definition of what a “proper” routine would be. Also, Luke is right about the nibbling. It’s definitely a thing with Bauer. But, his stuff is great and if he just loosens up and pitches…well, he could be dominant. Derek Johnson is a wizard with these arms and I suspect that he can turn him into a real pticher with some work. Remember, Johnson has seen great success with several guys already and is a great developmental mind. Bauer is an incredible prospect, and if we could convince the Indians to send him our way, I would have a celebration.

      1. DarthHater


        1. Hansman1982

          Isn’t it fun that every other prospect out there sucks except cubs prospects who are criminally underrated?

      2. Jason Powers

        Good statements Jed. His ‘flaws’, maybe are our gain.

        1. Jed Jam Band

          People just seem to forget that scouting departments are more comprehensive than they’ve ever been. Sources like Jim Callis, Ben Badler, John Sickels, Jason Parks, and Keith Law are giving us the best info on prospects that we’ve ever seen. Now, not every prospect is what they are projected to be, but this whole process has been frustrating to me. Just because a guy has a flaw doesn’t mean that he is not still a great prospect. I mean, think about guys who have turned into pretty great players with one flaw. Hell, look at Travis Wood. He has no real one out pitch to speak of, yet he is using incredible control (made all the more unlikely by his home park being Wrigley) to get outs. That’s really only one example though. All kinds of examples of guys excelling despite a true, obvious flaw. In Bauer’s case, it’s not even so much a permanent flaw as it is a hitch in his approach. And, with the staff we’ve built under the leadership of Theo, Jed, and Jason, I have great faith that this organization can work capably with him and other players with similar issues. A good prospect is a good prospect and I doubt we could ask for much better than Bauer.

      3. Cubman23

        We’ll have to agree to disagree. The numbers simply aren’t there. He is really struggling to find the zone and it’s getting worse. His 9 HBP in 77 IP at AAA this year indicate it’s more than a nibbler approach.

  16. K Stud

    Rangers are getting clobbered in the game tonight, which they wanted Garza to start….could that entice them to make whatever change is necessary to make this happen?

    1. turn two

      In short…no

  17. Kevin

    Any chance Garza accepts Cubs qualifying offer if he’s not traded? Teams don’t want to pay top dollar and lose a draft pick too. This new CBA needs to be overhauled. The good teams stay good and the bad ones stay bad. The time commitment to change a team around is just too long.

    1. wvcubsfan

      I think he wants to file for free agency. I can’t blame him for testing the waters to see exactly how much money he can make. Might very well be able to set up his kids, kids for life with this contract.

      1. Cubman23

        Don’t blame him for testing the waters either, but I think Garza’s kids are pretty set for life already – $30 million in career earnings.

  18. Deacon

    Very glad the Rangers deal fell through! Edwards has command but no stuff and Ramirez has stuff but no command. You can’t trade a #2 or #3 pitcher and get a #4 or #5 pitcher in return.

    I’d rather keep Garza at this point and draft a Maneae-type in the supplemental round than take this batch of mid-level prospects.

    Given that the Cubs were thisclose to taking it well in advance of the deadline, what does it say about how underwhelming the other offers must have been?

    1. chirogerg

      I’d say someone has stuff if they strike out 122 batters in 93.1 innings

  19. JRock

    I question Oakland’s out-of-the-blue interest. That seems like it could more likely just be an intentional leak by Jed to try to get Texas to up their offer, by leaking the 1st place team in Texas’ division is now in hot pursuit of Garza. Not a bad tactic if that is the case.

    1. Jp3

      Or Beane linking it… He’ll of a long term plan by him, scare them into giving away more young talent for a rental pitcher… Who knows

    2. Deacon

      Not to say it couldn’t happen but Beane trades veterans for prospects not the other way around. Also, some long-held resentment between the front office and Beane for perception that Beane lifted the cover off of Moneyball tactics.

      By-the-way, anyone heard how much of Garza`s remaining contract the Cubs are willing to pay? That`s not inconsequential for teams like the Pirates.

      1. Mike F

        You might want to recheck your facts. Look up who BB advised Henry to hire when he said no.

    3. Cubman23

      I tend to think that we severely overestimate the brinksmanship that goes on around these trades. These guys talk to each other all the time – they can just call each other directly to gauge interest. Plus, it would be pretty easy to figure out if another GM was doing an end-around on you, which would really hurt the working relationship you need to make deals.

      It’s possible, but the ideas we come up with seem more Soviet-era spy novel and less 2013 MLB trade deadline.

  20. Kevin

    I would assume, given the right mix of players coming back, the Cubs would be willing to eat it all.

  21. Abe Froman

    Brett, seems like it was a nice day to watch the kiddos.

  22. Bsteady

    To Ambiguous from earlier…You would rather have Phillips and all his showboating instead of say, oh I don’t know, Robinson Cano or Dustin Pedroia? Hell I’d take Ian Kinsler or Matt Carpenter over him.

  23. Bsteady

    @ Mike F…..Who? Did BB advise Hendry to hire?

    1. Tommy

      Think he’s talking about Bill James, the father of Sabermetrics.

    2. DarthHater

      Not Hendry. John Henry, the owner of the Red Sox.

      1. Tommy

        Yeah, what Darth said.

    3. Mike F

      Theo Epstein…..

      1. Mike F

        And Bill James and the whole metric thing is not and was’t a secret. It is an applied OP or statistical modeling look at baseball and how to build a winner.

  24. Josh t

    Garza/Russell and dejesus or schierholtz for Salazar and Bauer. Cubs eat the rest of Garza’s salary for this year. Or we could also throw in Valbuenna which I heard they were interested in.

    1. turn two

      These random trades suggestions always seem so out of place.

  25. Fastball

    Well there is a week and a few days left. Will it be groundhog day again this year. I wonder if our leadership has this under control or not. I dont think other suitors will pay the same price as the Rangers. If they were willing rhey would be in the news every 15 minutes. So will we get less than the boys want. Did they give up on an extension to quick. If this gets norched its 2 years in a row that this FO will have poked tge pooch so to speak. I wanna believe but I guess I wont until the proof is in the pudding.

    1. Jed Jam Band

      Hardly a word of that made sense.

    2. DarthHater

      I think the pooch is in the pudding.

      1. wvcubsfan

        Thinking fastball is on the Purple Drank

      2. D.G.Lang

        I think he was trying to say they put the pudding into the pouch.

    3. Kramden

      Let me see if I can translate as I once took a course in Hip years ago. ….

      What I think Fastball is saying is that this seems very much like the trading deadline last year (Groundhog Day) and wonders if Theo & Jedd are exploiting their current advantage as much as they can or if they’re the ones being taken advantage of. Fastball doesn’t think other teams will offer as much as the Rangers appear to be offering and if they were, word would leak out to the media about players being discussed much like they did with the Rangers, so we’d all have like 15 minute updates…. same as with the Rangers.

      Because of all this, Fastball fears the Cubs will end up with less than what the Rangers offered and wonders if it wouldn’t just be more worthwhile to just resign Garza but Jedd & Theo may have given up on that option too quickly.

      If all or any of this comes to pass as Fastball outlines, it will be two years in a row this same thing happened…. Which I’m assuming Fastball doesn’t think is a good thing.

  26. Mike F

    The Cleveland thing makes some sense. More potential tread on the tires, a left handed bat and not all the minors regression with eye issues. Of the pitching who might be available, I think the Texas deal is weak, that package is very light on quality arms and that is important.

    Frankly I would forget about the stressing position players and either Texas upped the offer to include Jackson or don’t deal with them period. I would rather have the comp pick.

  27. Ferris

    Look at the record, this squad even with garza will get no worse than the seventh pick nxt yr….we got to move him. Hes my fav. Current cub but we gotta be smart, we will have a chance to resign him nxt yr. The system has gotten much better but we need more good arms or players who can get us those arms,garza this yr an maybe castro next…..the future depends on smart moves…. go cubs.

  28. Ferris

    Getting olt or chisenhal allows valbuena or barney or ransome to be dealt. Shurholtz or dejesus an sori can be dealt an a cpl b.p. pieces , we should stock up this yr an really go hard for sme big names nxt yr.

  29. Jp3

    Day 3 of the Matt garza wasn’t traded hangover… Another long day of hitting refresh ahead. When will Bryant start playing so I can obsess over someone else? Baez probably will be putting a restraining order out soon😃

  30. Dean

    FWIW, if you’re going to trade Garza, you have to get back an impact player or it it doesn’t make much sense. Include Shierholtz to add controllable value. Someone AA or higher that has shown the ability to dominate. If you can’t get that then you let him go to free agency and draft a polished college jr/sr pitcher with lots of upside that you feel only needs a year in the minors to be ready with the draft pick. Getting a bunch of meh players back isn’t going to move the needle in making the cubs better. Then spend what it takes to get the highly regarded free agent pitcher out of Cuba, Gonzalez. Would love to see the cubs be aggressive with our impact players, moving the big four up to the show by mid 2014. Time to see what we’ve got. If they need more seasoning, bring them back down for a bit. Tired of driving a chevy, time for acaddy.

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