Could we see Andrew Cashner as a starter at Wrigley Field during the 2011 MLB schedule? Andrew Cashner was always a starter until he was drafted by the Cubs and he has pitched as a reliever ever since. A lot depends on what the Cubs do the rest of the off-season.
GM Jim Hendry keeps saying that the Cubs are in the market for a starting pitcher and they have pursued vigorous trade talks with the Tampa Bay Rays for Matt Garza. If the Cubs landed a player like Garza, then there is very klittle chance that we would see Cashner as a starter.
But now that the best free agent starting pitcher – Cliff Lee – signed with the Philadelphia Phillies instead of the New York Yankees and Texas Rangers, the Yankees and Rangers could make a strong play to try to lure Garza away from the Rays. That could limit the Cubs chances to snag him, which could open up a spot for Cashner if he has a solid spring.
Also, the Cubs could try to shop Carlos Zambrano around again after his solid end to the 2010 MLB season. Zambrano has a no trade clause, but the Cubs could try to convince him to waive it to play for a team like the New York Yankees where he could win a World Series now. Big would also be re-united with the only pitching coach he has ever known – Larry Rothschild – who recently left the Cubs to take the Yankees pitching coach job.
Should be interesting to see how things fall into place now that Lee has signed. We should start to see all the dominoes fall over the next few weeks…