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MLB Storylines: Cubs still exploring Samardzija trade

MLB Storylines: Cubs still exploring Samardzija trade
Jeff Samardzija went 8-13 with a 4.34 ERA in 33 starts for the Cubs last year. (Photo: CBS Sports)
February 26, 2014
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In this MLB News and Notes segment, I will be giving occasional reports on the latest news and rumors throughout the MLB. I also will try to tweet news and rumors as I see them, so feel free to follow me on Twitter: @ajnicholsIBI.

Here are the stories from Tuesday, February 25th.

Top Stories

  • Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times reported that with extension talks currently at an impasse, the Cubs may still potentially deal starter Jeff Samardzija before the start of the season. According to, two sources have said that a Samardzija deal before Opening Day is a strong possibility, while another rejected the idea that trade talks are already in progress.

Tribe News

  • Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer wrote that he would be "stunned" if the Indians made a late play for pitcher Ervin Santana. Hoynes went on to say that Cleveland values their first-round pick too much to make such a move. The Indians have been mentioned as one of the teams known to have shown some level of interest in Santana.
  • Manager Terry Francona said that hard-throwing reliever Blake Wood is not only working on lowering his walk rate, but also on cutting down his time to the plate.
  • Relievers Bryan Shaw and Cody Allen may start throwing in games a week later than other pitchers, in an effort to rest their arms for a large workload in 2014.
  • For Wednesday's Cactus League opener, Cleveland's lineup will be: Morgan CF, Cabrera SS, Kipnis 2B, Chisenhall 3B, Raburn LF, Gomes C, Francoeur RF, Cooper 1B, Adams DH

Others News and Notes

  • According to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, Ervin Santana is refusing to lower his asking price as the start of the 2014 season approaches. Executives from teams interested in the righty have said that despite teams already being over a week into Spring Training, Santana is still seeking a contract in the $50 million range.
  • George A. King III of the New York Post reported Johan Santana threw for seven teams in Fort Myers on Tuesday. The results weren't overly promising, as Santana sat in the upper 70s and topped out at only 81 mph.
  • Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times wrote that former Indian Jim Thome has expressed an interest in managing at some point. Thome, 43, has yet to officially retire from playing.
  • Jennifer Langosch of reported that Cardinals pitcher Jaime Garcia is set to have a second opinion on his left shoulder after undergoing an MRI on Monday.

User Comments

February 27, 2014 - 9:08 AM EST
I don't know if the Cubs would still want Chiz though.

Rumors did say they asked for him in Garza talks...but then they got Mike Olt (a 3B) for Garza from a Rangers. They also drafted Bryant last year (a 3B). Maybe they move Bryant to the OF and they have lost interest in Olt, but personally think the Chiz to Chicago ship has sailed. Wouldn't be opposed to it though if Santana proves to be an everyday 3B (though not sure I want to give up Chiz til Santana proves during the regular season he can handle it).

Still think Jose Ramirez is the infielder to deal to the Cubs. 2B doesn't seem as strong as the left side of the infield for the Cubs. Would need to include a pitcher too...Bauer or maybe Anderson. Cubs will want more but I wouldn't budge much from that.
February 26, 2014 - 11:28 PM EST
The Cubs wanted Chisenhall for Garza.If the Santana experiment at third pans out I could see a similar deal for Samardjiza being worked out.
February 26, 2014 - 2:04 PM EST
Let the games and competition for roster spots begin. Looking forward to see certain players perform during spring training games.

I'm looking forward on following results from the following pitchers Bauer, Carrasco, Hagadone, Wood, Tomlin, Outman, Marcum, Harang, Adams, Lee, and Axford.

Position players: Santana at 3B, Chisenhall, Aguilar, Cooper, Francouer, Morgan, Bourn, Moncrief, Swisher, and Cabrera.
February 26, 2014 - 12:01 PM EST
That's debatable if the system was deeper then than now...

Also want to clarify I'm not suggesting we trade all our top specs for Samardzija. He's not as good as Ubaldo was and not worth as much. Cubs may ask for that but then you move on.
February 26, 2014 - 11:45 AM EST
Hermie... the difference is that back when we traded for Ubaldo, our system was a bit deeper than it is now. If you give up a Santana, Lindor, etc.... you're done for.
February 26, 2014 - 11:05 AM EST
Didn't the Tribe give up it's 3 best pitching specs to get Ubaldo and his 2.5 years of service recently?

If the philosophy hasn't changed, don't think we'll see a 4yr/$46M deal for Santana when he isn't really worth it plus we haven't given a deal like that to a non-Tribe pitcher in....well ever?

Samardzija is going to get around $15M over the next two years (making $5.345M this year, one more arby year)....that fits into a Tribe budget and philosophy a lot better IMO than Santana. Not saying I'm 100% against Santana but at 4 years I am.
February 26, 2014 - 10:58 AM EST
Unless the "philosophy" of this organization is changing I would not want to give up our best prospects for 1 or 2 years of Samardzija. I have the opposite theory in fact. We should be looking to sign a guy like E Santana to a 4/46 contract and trade Masterson to bring more talent to the organization. Ofcoarse it's not that simple and there has to be a team willing to give up good talent in order to make a trade. It's along the same lines as the Rays trying to trade Price before he hits free agency.
February 26, 2014 - 8:53 AM EST
Still very intrigued by Samardjiza for the Tribe. Some of the rumored demands by the Cubs are pretty outrageous IMO but still a guy I really think would help behind Masterson this gives you a guy for 2015 should Masterson leave. Tribe and Eptstein/Cubs do have some trade history of late too.
February 26, 2014 - 8:51 AM EST
Yeah can't see Santana getting 4 years and $50M at this point. Sure Ubaldo got it but Ubaldo also is better. Been better recently (hell was arguably better in 2012 even) and has the better overall career. Santana would be lucky to get 3 years and $36M right now iMO.
February 26, 2014 - 7:43 AM EST
For a pitcher who has not had a winning season in 3 yrs and is over age 30 I thinks Santana demands are unrealistic. I think the reason he is holding out for 50 mil is probably last time he would get this type of contract. Even if he holds out past the June draft at this point I do not see a club offering his asking price. Although I could be wrong there especially if a club is desperate for pitching at that time of year or consider him important for the playoff push.

For the other Santana he might have to sit out year to get stronger or his career might be over.

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