The Cubs and Rays are in talks to trade pitcher Matt Garza for prospects in the next couple of days. The 2 sides have met twice to discuss the terms of the deal, so this could happen any hour now. The Rays are in “dump” mode, as they have parted ways with Carl Crawford who signed with the Red Sox and Carlos Pena who signed with the Cubs. They are also looking to trade a few pieces to acquire prospects who are right at the edge of being able to perform at the major league level (for a fraction of the cost). The Cubs have some nice prospects that they are willing to part with in order to acquire a starting pitcher like Garza who would slide into the rotation next to Carlos Zambrano and Ryan Dempster. That would also allow the Cubs to move another starter (say Tom Gorzelanny, Randy Wells or Carlos Silva) to acquire a veteran reliever to go along side lefty set-up man Sean Marshall and closer Carlos Marmol.
Garza is only 27 years old – he went 15-10 with a 3.91 ERA and 1.25 WHIP in 32 starts in 2010 pitching in the tough AL East. He has playoff experience is a fierce competitor. Garza is also durable – he has made at least 30 starts for the Rays in each of the last 3 seasons.
Pena had this to say about his former Rays teammate — “Matt Garza is one of those pitchers that wherever he goes is going to be an incredible asset. It’s no secret that he is extremely talented and the sky is the limit for a guy like him. I think he’s got Cy Young potential, to be honest with you. His stuff is electrifying. I think anybody would like to have a guy like that.”
WOW – I’m actually excited about something that GM Jim Hendry might do this winter. The Texas Rangers and Milwaukee Brewers are also mix on this, so the Cubs are going to have to give up 2-3 good prospects to land Garza, but it would be worth it for an established pitcher like him…