David DeJesus Traded to Washington Nationals for PTBNL (UPDATES)

nobody effs with dejesusIn a serious surprise, the Chicago Cubs have today traded outfielder David DeJesus to the Washington Nationals, against whom they begin a four-game series today.

Because of his reasonable contract, veteran presence, and adequate production in center field, DeJesus was expected not to clear waivers in August. If he was claimed on waivers, he could be traded, but only to the team that claimed him. At this point, it isn’t known whether DeJesus cleared waivers and was traded to the Nats, or was claimed by the Nats and subsequently traded.

Either way, it’s a surprise. Although Junior Lake’s emergence as a maybe-possible guy for 2014, DeJesus still offered the ability to play all over the outfield and offer quality at bats, particularly at the top of the lineup. The Cubs had control over him for 2014 on a $6.5 million option, which may have made him more attractive to the Nationals (though it makes for an expensive 4th outfielder).

Don’t let the PTBNL return get you down just yet. We’re approaching the end of the minor league season, and it could be that the Cubs are legitimately just choosing between a couple nice prospects. This way, the Cubs get a little more evaluation time.

Obviously we’ll have more on this as it comes out.

UPDATE: Carrie Muskat and Mark Gonzales both also report the trade. Brian Bogusevic will be activated from the disabled list, and will take DeJesus’s spot on the roster, per Gonzales. Given that the Cubs can also bring back Bogusevic on the cheap next year if they like him, it’s all the more understandable that they’d like to open up a spot for him for “try-out” purposes. Keep in mind, Ryan Sweeney will soon be back as well, and he’s another possible option for 2014.

UPDATE 2: The Cubs have confirmed. DeJesus for a PTBNL. Had this deal come at the Deadline, there would be no surprise at all, so I suppose – in terms of roster construction and long-term plan – there’s no surprise today, save for the fact that it was a waiver deal.

UPDATE 3: The money aspect of the deal breaks down thusly: the Cubs save about $1 million in salary this year, and then save the $1.5 million buyout on DeJesus’s 2014 option (the minimum to which they’d be obligated). While money hopefully wasn’t the motivator here, it obviously matters.

UPDATE 4: Speculating on the return, I’d think it would probably be in the range of what the Cubs got for Scott Hairston (also from the Nationals). That was pitching prospect Ivan Pineyro, who has thrown very well at High-A. He was a 20 to 30 organizational guy.

UPDATE 5: Although I’ll discuss this more later, Ken Rosenthal says DeJesus was claimed on waivers by the Nationals, which gave the Cubs the opportunity to be off the hook for the $2.5 million referenced above. If that was the approach all sides were taking, the return here might be pretty slim. In other words, had he cleared waivers, it would have been possible for the Cubs to chip in some salary to land a decent prospect (not every team views a $6.5 million 3rd/4th outfielder as a good investment). Since he did not, and the Cubs and Nats worked out a deal, I’m thinking the money was the biggest part of the deal from the Cubs’ perspective.

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

415 responses to “David DeJesus Traded to Washington Nationals for PTBNL (UPDATES)”

  1. matt

    this team is terrible. not one veteran to show the young kids how to go about their business. the longest ten yeared cub every day player is likely castro…..i’m sure everyone can learn how to play the game the right way from him.

    1. cms0101

      Castro was the longest tenured Cub before DeJesus was traded…

      1. Spencer

        This is incorrect.

        1. cms0101

          Positional player. Not pitcher. I know Shark has been around longer. I was referring to the positional player comment.

      2. Eternal Pessimist

        If he was the longest tenured Cub before DeJesus was traded he would continue to be the longest tenured Cub afterward.

    2. cms0101

      Cody Ransom is a guy that’s been around the league. Navarro and Schierholtz too. It’s nice to have those veteran guys around, but maybe this will push Rizzo and/or Castro to mature a little. Sometimes getting the vocal leaders out of the way will do that. If not, that’s what Sveum is there for.

  2. Rich

    I hope he goes 4-4 against the Cubs…and makes a game saving catch for to rob the Cubs of their 2nd hit..

    1. ichabod

      why, exactly would you want that?

      1. gocatsgo2003


    2. CubsFaninMS

      Close. He was 0 for 1 with a fly out.

  3. Bilbo161

    Yes I think most fans have pretty much forgotten all the PTBNLs. That will be a fun post season present to open. Also think the FO is thinking of players in-house coming to fill out the outfield. It would not surprise me to see Bryant force his way to the top in Spring Training.

  4. Corey

    To me, I think DDJ doesn’t really care about money. I could see him singing next year for absolute pennies just to finish his career with the Cubs.

  5. Larry S

    Any chance they needed the 40 man roster spot? Could they have been concerned about not having enough?

    1. cubchymyst

      This was my thought. The 40 man roster is going to see a crunch this off season and the Cubs outfield is currently left handed heavy. Front office likely saw an opportunity to gain a prospect and free up a spot and took it. DeJesus will be missed though.

    2. WGNstatic

      Perhaps, but I’d guess that the PTBNL is a 40-man guy. If he is a MiLB player on the Nats 40 man, he would need to clear waivers to be traded now. The PTBNL thing, as I understand it, is basically a loophole to make such players tradeable after the waiver deadline.

  6. CJay

    David is a Baseball player— the young guns need to pay attention to a pro and how this game is played. He is a professional.

  7. Frankdatank

    so they trade the only player who actually excited the fans and gives 100% every game……I hope he hits 4 home runs tonight

    1. ssckelley

      It was not the player that got the fans excited, it was his wife.

  8. abe


    Do you think this was done to clear up stops on the 40 man roster? Things are going to be really tight this off season..

    1. Mick

      We have a few guys that we just have to protect by putting on roster.

    2. Spencer

      Going to be tight? There’s like 10 guys that don’t even deserve to be on the 25 man roster right now.

      1. gocatsgo2003

        10 is a bit much, but not as far off as I would have guessed — the easiest guys to assume will be gone are Gregg, Rondon, Murphy, Ransom, Watkins, Gillespie, and McDonald. The 40-man is a bit different as we have a whole bunch of guys on the 60-day DL that will need a spot who the FO likely want to stick around (Dolis, Fujikawa, Vizcaino, and Sweeney — I think he’ll be resigned) with a decent number of players who likely need to be added for Rule 5 protection.

  9. cubzfan23

    Yea ok. I don’t like it. Fucking Cubs.

  10. SenorCub

    I think this trade (DeJesus) is going to really p*** me off, not because of DeJesus himself but because of the lack of players ready to step-up from the Minors. It’s very easy to criticize the front office at this stage. So far they have brought in Rizzo, Jackson, and Villanueva of which none of them are really performing all that well. Jeff and Starlin were already here and they aren’t exactly overwhelming anyone. So thus far this team looks to be gearing for another heavy loss team in 2014. Something drastically has to happen at this point for this team to be competitive next year. Yes, they save all this money from getting rid of players but I just don’t see any of that money being re-invested in MLB players from other teams. Ugh….I need to go take a walk.

    1. gocatsgo2003

      … which all lies on the presumption that the plan is to “be competitive” next year. Suppose it depends on your definition of “competitive,” but I don’t think anyone in the front office is operating under the assumption that we will challenge for the playoffs next season and that is part of “The Plan.”

      1. Kyle

        The plan was to try to be competitive this year, so I don’t know why that would change.

        1. gocatsgo2003

          It was?

          1. Mike W

            SenorCub you are talking about guys the front office have brought in that sticked around. Look at guys they have brought in and flipped for young, good/decent prospects. Scott Feldman brought in and traded for Pedro Strop and Jake Arrieta both having a great second half thus far with the Cubs. Scott Hairston brought in and was traded for Ivan Pineyro who is owning it in the minors. Even last year they brought in Paul Maholm and traded him for a 22 year Arodys Vizcaino who still have a bright future. Im pretty sure Kris Bryant was drafted by this FO who destroyed Low A and now off to a great start in High A Daytona. What do you want the FO to do sign guys like Albert Pujols or Josh Hamliton for multiple years and hundreds of millions of dollars? Yeah no thanks. Look at what happens to players once they peak they decline and that is what is happening to players like them. Rizzo just turned 24 and this is his first full season, give him some time to come around. Edwin Jackson was just a flat out mistake I agree, same with Carlos Villanueva. This FO has done great things to rebuild the farm system just wait for these guys to develop and the Cubs should have a solid team for years. Go Cubs!

      2. hansman1982

        They did a pretty terrible job of putting a roster on the field that had no hopes of contending then. If you want to see what that looks like, check out Houston and Miami’s OD roster.

        1. gocatsgo2003

          I keep going back to the idea put forth by the front office that it isn’t worth winning 75 games if you aren’t going to win 90. I believe we have hit the “we prefer 70 wins over 75″ portion of that strategy.

          1. willis

            Well if it was, it was for about 5 minutes. And next year will be worse. They are gutting everything they can and pinching every penny they have for the MLB team. I’m still confused as hell about Jackson because that is 180 from every other move they have made.

            2014 will be another crapfest long year. With all of these signs, and all of the non reinvesting in the major league club, do any of you really think they go out and make any kind of splash for anyone? By trade or FA? Sure seems like that’s not anywhere close to the plans of this FO and we’re just going to sit here like the sucker ass fans we are watching year after year of failures at this level.

            1. BT

              All this because they traded David DeJesus?

              1. Eternal Pessimist

                2014 is looking a lot worse to me, but not because they traded DeJesus. He is a good player that was going to cost 6 million next year (or 6.5?) or would require the 1.5 million dollar buyout. 2014 is looking bad because of the regression of key pieces of the 2014 team (Castro, Rizzo, Barney) and failure to continue to develop by Shark.

                I’m trying to enjoy the growth of the minor league system, but it is getting harder and harder as our MLB core is just not encouraging at all.

                1. gocatsgo2003

                  It is also perfectly possible that Castro and Rizzo “regress” back to their previous performances and suddenly the offense looks at least palatable.

                  By the way, we are all bitching about Rizzo but he still has an OPS+ of 105 and oWAR of 1.0 despite a pretty low BAbip of .254. He isn’t exactly a world-beater this year, but he hasn’t been all that bad.

                  1. Eternal Pessimist

                    Yeah, I still believe that Rizzo will be back to himself eventually. Castro looking much more lost, but playing a premium position and a long way till either reaches their expected peak (age).

                    …but, regression sucks brings their future projections down. Especially if Castro has been ‘figured out’ for the rest of his career.

            2. hansman1982

              By trade? Yes. By FA? Probably not. FA is just such a terrible place to get players unless they are on the right side of 30.

            3. Kyle

              I’m intrigued by your ability to admit that Jackson invalidates your theory and then still go forward with it.

              1. On The Farm


              2. willis

                My point is that I am confused deeply by it because every other move they have made to this point has been completely on the other side of the table from a signing like that. Jackson is one move, with a billion other moves that look completely different. That’s what I meant.

                As far as all of this because of Dejesus…no. But it goes much deeper than him I fear. This move is another example of trimming payroll as much as possible and building solely from within. If these guys fail (the prospects) then what? It’s an eggs all in one basket mindset that I think is a little dangerous for this organization.

                1. On The Farm

                  I am not so sure its a little dangerous. I am pretty sure there will always be 30+ FA to sign every off season. I feel like there is some over reacting going on here.

                2. Kyle

                  We spent more than $100m on free agents last offseason. We aren’t trying to build only from within.

                  1. gocatsgo2003

                    Which the FO specifically commented on, indicating that (paraphrasing) “you’ve got to sign players when they’re available.” For all our bitching about EJax, a $13MM annual salary isn’t all that nuts in today’s market for starting pitching and his peripherals still indicate that he hasn’t been all that bad this year — xFIP below his career number and in line with his last two years, 2.0 WAR, etc.

          2. Kyle

            That doesn’t mean they didn’t try to win 90.

            1. On The Farm

              Agreed, while the team wasn’t the greatest among the NL, I still think they tried to win the divison, despite what their record shows.

      3. cms0101

        I know DeJesus was good in the clubhouse, and his wife is hot, but I don’t think losing him is that significant of a loss to warrant throwing out the white flag for 2014. If this team can figure out a good bullpen mix, the starting rotation continues to perform as it did this season, and they don’t have 3 or more positional players have career-worst seasons simultaneously, I think they could compete next season. They won’t be predictable world-beaters, but there is enough to compete for a wild-card, with ample infield prospects to acquire potential difference makers by the trade deadline next season.

        1. Mick

          David and Kim opened and closed every club in Scottsdale this spring, at least according to my sons–so watch out Wash D.C.

      4. matt

        “the plan” sucks. getting our asses kicked every year sucks. paying top shelf product prices and getting rummage sale product sucks. we can get all excited about the “prospects”, but don’t forget Castro was about as can’t miss after 2 years of 200+ hits and all star appearances, and now he’s barely hitting his weight. it’s time to start seeing results (and I do like what the minors look like, but this blows)

        1. On The Farm

          So we should worry because every prospect is going to turn out like Castro? Are you giving up on Castro based on one season? Hell the guy is still on the low end of his 20s. I think (at least a few weeks ago) someone posted he is still one of the ten youngest players in the league.

          1. matt

            No, but what I am saying is there is a development process. That just because these guys are all world doesn’t mean they are going to come up and go all Mike Trout on the Majors.

            The major league team needs major league talent, and we keep sending it away every year. There is no cohesiveness to the roster, and there is nobody at the minor league levels ready to take the positions.

            If someone were pushing DeJesus for PT, then fine….but this guy was the ultimate professional, and these trades are getting old.

            1. On The Farm

              So you were against trading Feldman, and Garza (one year left) and DeJesus (two years) because you thought we were going to win a WS next year? If you haven’t noticed all of the trades the FO has made the guys haven’t been under team control beyond the 2014 season. You have to get value on guys when its avaliable. The Cubs need the Cardinals, Pirates, and Reds to take a step back anyway. Fans need to stop all feelings hurt because the FO trades away players that won’t be around when our “window” opens.

  11. Stevie B

    Yawn…. you guys are a bunch of morans.

    1. Norm


    2. Danny Ballgame


  12. North Side Irish

    Albert Almora ‏@albertalmora 9m
    Sad to see @David_DeJesus3 go. One of the first guys to welcome me to the Cubs family. #ClassAct #MuchRespect

  13. Bilbo161

    Unfortunately the Cubs are not going to do too well the rest of the way, but I’ll enjoy the call-ups in September. Maybe not as much as next years but still fun to watch. We may have a shot at the number three pick now but doubt we will be as bad as last year finishing at stinky old number two. Next years draft is stacked compared to this years.

  14. CeeDeeVee

    Mannnnn….the first thing that popped in my head was when Sveum pulled Castro the other day. DeJesus was the first one to go and talk to Castro(I believe he rubbed his head). That’s the type of guy he was.

    1. Bilbo161

      Nice memory. I remember thinking
      The same way.

      1. miggy80

        My first thought too

      2. CeeDeeVee

        I have it on DVR. I’m gonna save it just for David lol

  15. dan

    David DeJesus is a great person has a hot wife and gives you everything he has when on the field. That being said he is an average ball player. We need the spots for the Jackson’s
    the Szczer’s and Silva’s to see what they can give us besides you can bet we probally got a nice arm out of this. If we are going young we need the spots. Good Luck David thanks for the time you gave us !!!

  16. The Show

    I’m tellin you guys, Jacoby is on the way.

    1. CeeDeeVee

      Yea forget the PTBNL, if that’s their plan then this move will be worth it.

    2. Frankdatank

      I have to agree….I think all along that was and is the plan

    3. Danny Ballgame

      I think that Choo is more likely. I will take either one though

      1. CubsFaninMS

        Let’s hope they don’t try running Choo so often if they do acquire him. His stolen base percentage this year is awful: 14 stolen based, 9 caught stealing.

        1. The Show

          Sad, because I think 14 would leading this club.

          1. Cubbie Blues

            Soriano is the team leader with 10.

            1. The Show

              ^ Exactly

  17. Kyle

    I know technically we only saved the buyout, but nobody was passing on DeJesus’s buyout. It’s a great deal. We trimmed a million this year and $6.5 million off next year’s projected salaries.

    1. Mick

      Most of our big pieces are gone. Did we get value? I am too dumb to even guess.

  18. josh ruiter

    I know this is somewhat of an anomaly but the last 15 years have produced some better than average PTBNL’s. The likes of Scott Broscius, Ted Lilly, Jason Schmidt, dmitri young, Ray King, Marco Scutaro, Greg Zaun, all of which I would love to get back as young 20 somethings in exchange for a veteran with one year left on a rebuilding team. That doesn’t even include the top 3 in my mind of Coco Crisp, Gio Gonzalez and Big Papi all coming in PTBNL deals as youngsters. Don’t get upset or fuss b/c of the PTBNL tag, it isn’t always a bad thing. And all those guys came in deals in the last 15 years.

  19. josh ruiter

    Oh, and one other PTBNL that puts all others to shame….”Well, I believe in the soul, the cock, the pussy, the small of a woman’s back, the hanging curve ball, high fiber, good scotch, that the novels of Susan Sontag are self-indulgent, overrated crap. I believe Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone. I believe there ought to be a constitutional amendment outlawing Astroturf and the designated hitter. I believe in the sweet spot, soft-core pornography, opening your presents Christmas morning rather than Christmas Eve and I believe in long, slow, deep, soft, wet kisses that last three days.” That’s right….Crash Davis

  20. Rich

    there reaches a point of re-building or building that you need players that fans appreciate and want to see play.

    He was a fan favorite..and looking at the Cubs for the rest of the season, can you really get excited about Rizzo and Castro as they are the future ?

    I guess the move makes sense…but…I dont see it…

    We are not the frickin Royals that we need to dump salaries…

    1. BT

      If the front office starts basing trades on whether or not players are “fan favorites”, it’s time to get a new front office.

    2. On The Farm

      “can you really get excited about Rizzo and Castro as they are the future ? ”

      I can. Are you asking if I can get excited about a 23 and 24 year old, one who is a two time all star, and the other who as long as you don’t look at his average, has been a good ball player (among league average 1B). Yeah that is something I can get excited about.

    3. The Dude Abides

      You might be aiming a little high to say were not the Royals…

    4. Eternal Pessimist

      ‘We are not the frickin Royals that we need to dump salaries…’

      Rich, I can’t disagree with you enough. Every team needs to dump salaries whenever they could use the money to do something better. If someone else values your player more than you do, dump away.

  21. On The Farm

    Man no DeJesus or Rizzo today, and Barney is batting 2nd. Yikes

    1. Eternal Pessimist

      Shaking up the line-up…maybe this will get him out of his funk!

  22. cubchymyst

    The front office should be familiar with the Nationals system from the Hairston trade. Hopefully there is a diamond in the rough they noticed the first time through and can pry lose this time.

  23. JB88

    “Since he did not, and the Cubs and Nats worked out a deal, I’m thinking the money was the biggest part of the deal from the Cubs’ perspective.”

    One of the biggest concerns that I have going forward is whether Theo/Jed/McLeod are less bullish on the Cubs because of a lack of financial resources and whether this grand experiment will fail because the three will view Ricketts as having sold them a bill of goods.

  24. The Dude Abides

    $$$ saved, more August & September losses, higher draft pick next year.

    This is a good day to be a Cubs fan. Just remember we are going to go from 90 losses to contending for a division title in one year. Just don’t ask for a timeline.

    In Theo we trust.

  25. marc

    when do ptbnl have to be bought out or named by?

  26. Cubbie Tim

    Would the Cubs go after Delmon Young? What do you think Brett?

  27. MichiganGoat

    So what’s the value to the Nationals? How does this help them? I think we might get somebody on their 40 man they knew they couldn’t protect and since they aren’t keeping DeJesus next year that is the only value I can see from the Nationals perspective. But that’s not that great a value to begin with.

  28. SenorCub

    Update #5 – that’s just lovely! They dumped him for salary relief. I’ve been to Kane County Cougars 3 times this year and zero times to Wrigley in the past 2 yrs. So will give it right back to the Cubs, show me a good product and I will go watch it. They’ve gone from 99.1% filled capacity in attendance from 2008 to 81.1% in 2013 and has dropped gradually since that year. This lack of good quality product is hurting their pocket book.

    1. gocatsgo2003

      I’m missing something… why could the Cubs NOT have chipped in money if he were claimed? Does not a revocable waiver claim also allow the two teams to work out a trade instead of either allowing the claim or revoking it?

      1. On The Farm

        I would imagine the value of them chipping in the $1 Mil for this years salary wouldn’t have netted anything on another level then they will currently get.

    2. willis

      The state of things is rather sad at the major league level right now. Money wise.

  29. SamuraiJock

    To add to the reasons for trading him, DeJesus ain’t having a good year – .250/.330/.401

    Nice guy, good teammate but not likely to be an offensive force next year.

  30. forlines

    Thanks for all you’ve given to the Cubs DeJesus. You’ll be sorely missed.

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