Don’t Forget About Mychal Givens – There is “Strong Interest” Out There

Although he had a brief rough patch about a month ago, Cubs reliever Mychal Givens has righted the ship and then some. The 32-year-old righty sports a 2.72 ERA over 39 appearances (39.2 innings), with a 3.95 FIP, a 29.2% K rate, and an 11.3% BB rate. I wouldn’t rate him as an impact reliever, necessarily, but he’s almost to that Ryan Tepera/Andrew Chafin tier from last year.

Which is to say, there’s going to be plenty of interest among contenders in adding Givens, and the expected return to the Cubs should be solid, if unspectacular. For reference, when he was traded to the Reds last year at midseason by the Rockies, they acquired a couple prospects in the 20 to 30 range in the Reds’ system (one has stayed in that same tier in the Rockies’ system since the trade, the other seems to have fallen off).

Sure enough, Givens is drawing a lot of interest in a market that seems thin on relief talent. Moreover, a couple specific teams get a mention, including a crosstown team to which the Cubs traded a couple relievers last year.

From Jesse Rogers:

There is strong interest in Cubs setup man Mychal Givens. The White Sox could be a fit after they kicked the tires on him last offseason. As did the Phillies, and both teams need middle relievers. The Cubs and White Sox did pull off two deals for bullpen arms last year, with Ryan Tepera and Craig Kimbrel going to the South Side from their crosstown rivals.

The trades with the White Sox did, uh, not go so well for the Cubs. Kimbrel netted Nick Madrigal, who has not been healthy or productive since, and Codi Heuer, who was pitching through a jacked up arm after the trade and wound up getting Tommy John surgery. Tepera netted lefty Bailey Horn, 24, who was a scouting play by the Cubs, but who has already been converted to full-time relief (and is posting so-so results at Double-A with terrible peripherals).

None of that is to say trading with the White Sox is going to be a mistake again. Just thought it needed to be pointed out. Otherwise, there is obviously familiarity there between the teams, and the Sox have plenty of interesting prospects for a Givens-caliber deal.

As for the Phillies, Michael just explored their possible fit for Ian Happ (so many teams), and maybe it’ll wind up yet another package discussion.

The main takeaway here, since we haven’t heard as much about him as the other bigger pieces: there is “strong interest” out there in Mychal Givens.

written by

Brett Taylor is the Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and on LinkedIn here. Brett is also the founder of Bleacher Nation, which opened up shop in 2008 as an independent blog about the Chicago Cubs. Later growing to incorporate coverage of other Chicago sports, Bleacher Nation is now one of the largest regional sports blogs on the web.

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