After another dominant start, and another hint that he knows he’s on his way out, Jeff Samardzija has got to be looking like one of the most attractive midseason trade pieces in recent memory.
With that in mind, there some additional national-level discussions about the possible suitors for Samardzija …
- Buster Olney and Keith Law discussed a number of the possible landing spots for Samardzija, if the Cubs do pull the trigger on a trade this year. Law says that the Blue Jays are a legit playoff contender, but they really need rotation help, which could mean Samardzija (even if it means giving up Aaron Sanchez). The Royals would probably also be in the group of teams, according to Law, for whom adding a Samardzija strongly matches the value that a playoff appearance would generate. Olney also mentions the Rockies and the Giants, with a special emphasis on the Giants, because they’ve made this kind of move before when they need to make it. And the Giants certainly have the young pitching to make an attractive offer to the Cubs – a point with which Law concurred. The duo’s conversation on the topic is a very interesting listen, and underscores how attractive Samardzija could be.
- Jon Heyman, after noting that the Cubs are going to want “top, top guys” for Samardzija, lists ten teams that could be involved down the line: the Yankees, Blue Jays, Red Sox, Dodgers, Rockies, Mariners, A’s, Braves, Rangers, and Marlins. Up front, let me say: from a trading standpoint, I love that there’s not exclusive overlap between the teams mentioned by Heyman, and those discussed by Olney and Law. In other words, even when listing 10 teams, Heyman still didn’t list all of the realistic possibilities. (I’d add in the Orioles, too.)
- Of the teams listed by Heyman, there are a couple you could probably throw out based on odds (Rangers, with their recent rash of injuries, are probably out; the Marlins have always seemed unlikely), and I still don’t think the Yankees have the pieces to get a deal done. The Dodgers would certainly be interesting, as they’ve got some very exciting young prospects to offer (how’s a packaged headlined by Joc Pederson and Julio Urias strike you? that might be about as good as it gets). The Braves have always seemed like a good fit, and there’s a deal to be had there if Lucas Sims is involved. The Blue Jays, we’ve talked about endlessly, and there’s a good fit there, too. The Red Sox certainly are loaded with great prospects, and would easily match up as a trading partner from the Cubs’ perspective, but I’m not sure how eager they’ll be to focus on Samardzija at the deadline. The Rockies and A’s, as we’ve discussed before, also make some sense.