According to George Ofman of WGN radio, two options the Cubs could pursue via trade are Colorado Rockies’ 3B Ian Stewart and San Diego Padres’ 3B Chase Headley. The Cubs will be in the market for a 3B as there are no good 3B on the free agent market. Besides Aramis Ramirez, but he has said the “ship has sailed” on returning to the Cubs. We have heard Chase Headley’s name mentioned of whom the Cubs could pursue on the trade market. However, Ian Stewart is a new name added to the list.
Like I already mentioned, Chase Headley has been a name the Cubs could pursue for quite a bit now. The first report came out of San Diego. Headley was said to be available this off-season, then was said he wasn’t. For the most part, there have been conflicting reports since the off-season started on if he is available or not. The Padres look like they will begin more of a re-build mode and trading Headley would be a smart move. Headley is most likely available and is being shopped; however, it’s been reported that Headley is going to take quite a bit to acquire. The 27 year-old is a switch hitter and can put up nice offensive numbers. Also, his defensive numbers aren’t too bad either. However, will Headley put up the same numbers away from Petco? Which is a hitters park. That would be the biggest question considering a trade for Headley. Since I don’t know what the price is for Headley…I can’t say what kind of ‘spects Headley would take. The Cubs reportedly talked with the Padres at the general manager meetings and one name that had to be mentioned was Chase Headley. I heard Josh Vitters was a name that was brought up during the meeting. In all honeslty, that would make sense as a 3B would come to the Cubs and a 3B would go back to San Diego. Although Josh Vitters is not expected to stay at 3B do to his defensive problems. As of right now, people have Vitters as a 1B or an OF if and when he makes the majors. Headley is just one option of whom could be the Cubs starting 3B in 2012.
Another option is Ian Stewart…a name that is new to the list. He’s not the best option by any measure. The 26 year-old is a left-handed hitter who does not produce too much. His offensive numbers aren’t great, but does play subpar defense. Stewart came into the majors and played pretty well. But after his beginning to the majors, Stewart has struggled big time and could not stay up with the Rockies. He kept getting demoted and promoted from Triple A to the majors. So…if you tried to argue his case on playing bad, you can bring up the inconsistency on not staying with one team. However, that does not show his early struggles. I don’t see him producing to his early success and a trade for Stewart would not be a great idea. His stock may be lower than ever, but he would still cost something and anything for him would be a lost for the Cubs. I would rather have Josh Vitters, DJ LeMaheiu of Junior Lake at 3B in 2012 over Ian Stewart.
More options for 3B will come up via free agency and the trade market. Could Aramis Ramirez actually come back? George Ofman tweets Ramirez could come back for the 2012 season because of the lack of interest in Ramirez. The Cubs did offer Ramirez arbitration and he would make about 16 million next season if he were to accept. 2 teams that have interest in Ramirez are the Brewers and the Tigers. However, the Tigers only want Ramirez on a 1 year contract and I don’t think they will offer him 16 million on that contract. The Brewers have talked to Ramirez’s agent at the GM meetings and do look like a viable option. Since their current 3B Casey McGehee struggled during the 2011 season. Ramirez is reportedly looking for a 3 or 4 year contract. I just can’t see a team going that high in years. But I guess you never know, it is the MLB and anything can happen. Ramirez has until December 7th to accept arbitration.
I guess we just have to wait and see what Team Theo does as 3B!