alex gordon royalsPeter Gammons dropped a significant column this week that’ll require a fair bit of reading, but one Chicago Cubs-related bit jumps out for immediate discussion: “Sift through five days of calls and there is a lot of John Lackey and Alex Gordon to the Cubs speculation.”

There’s actually a whole lot to unpack there in one little sentence.

First of all, it’s important to note that there’s nothing too definitive in there. Indeed, “speculation” is something different from hearing word that it’s going down or even that the sides are actually involved in serious discussions.

But (1) Gammons doesn’t share something like that unless there’s a little heat, (2) “speculation” in this context amounts to “informed” speculation, which means it’s more than just baseball people opining about fits, and (3) if it were just folks opining on fits, would Gordon to the Cubs really be among the first fits they’d mention? No way.

Second, I find it interesting that, as Gammons is unpacking his Thanksgiving week of calls from sources over the past five days, he’s hearing from multiple people about the Cubs and these two players. Wisdom of the crowds doesn’t always apply in these situations, but it’s interesting that so many folks in the game are talking about this specific pairing (and pairing).

Third, I find it interesting that the mention there on the pitching side is Lackey, and not Jeff Samardzija. Among the second tier starters, those are definitely the two we’re hearing most about – Lackey here, for example; Samardzija here, for example; both here, for example. On the right deal, each pitcher makes a great deal of sense for the Cubs. There are fewer rumors of wide interest out there on Lackey, though (the latest was that the Cubs and Giants might be the choice for Lackey), as compared to Samardzija, who is believed to be intriguing to a very large number of teams. Depending on what else the Cubs do in the rotation, Lackey might make more sense for the Cubs than Samardzija … or vice versa. Or both.

Fourth, once again, Alex Gordon pops up. Gammons was one of the early guys on Cubs and Gordon, though not first or only, so he’s clearly hearing this from somewhere … still. Gordon remains a tricky fit for the Cubs – as a superlative corner outfield defender and a quality, disciplined bat, you’d love to have him, but the Cubs don’t (yet) have an obvious corner outfield spot to put him. But, as I said before, by the time the third round of Gordon-Cubs rumors popped up, there’s clearly legitimate interest here. In conjunction with some other moves (moving a bat like Jorge Soler, just as an example, for pitching; moving Miguel Montero to open up catcher starts for Kyle Schwarber (though I still think that seems very unlikely and arguably undesirable)), Gordon could make a ton of sense for the Cubs.

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