The Boston Red Sox recently designated relief pitcher Daniel Bard for assignment and the Chicago Cubs are expected to have interest in Bard. Young and upcoming reporter Chris Cotillo reports the Cubs have had internal discussions of acquiring Bard from the Red Sox. The Red Sox designated Bard for assignement yesterday (September 1st) and has 10 days to trade him or they’ll have the option to send him down to Triple-A Pawtucket or he’ll become a free agent. If Bard does clear waivers, it’ll be his option of what to do and he’ll likely choose free agency. However, Bard will likely not clear waivers. In which makes a trade very likely.
Bard is a Theo Epstein guy. Bard came into the Red Sox organization when Epstein was the head man in charge. Now with Epstein in charge of the Cubs, there will surely be interest. Bard has struggled after 2010, but once was a highly-touted prospect. The Red Sox tried Bard as a starting pitcher and after he started, everything has gone downhill. Bard has great pitches and all, but his command is horrible. If Bard can find his command again, he could be a great acqusition.
Bard only 28 years old will fit right into the Cubs plans. The Cubs like high-upside relief pitchers. The Cubs acquired Pedro Strop earlier in the season as his stock was low and he’s been arguably the Cubs best relief pitcher. Just like Bard, Strop had command issues with the Orioles but you couldn’t tell as he’s been very consistent. The Cubs would hope for the same outcome from Bard.
If the Cubs were to acquire Bard, they would have to open a spot on the 40-man roster. The Cubs could trade a player on the 40-man roster for Bard to open a spot, but that’s very unlikely since the Red Sox DFA Bard to open a spot on the 40-man roster and the Red Sox 40-man roster is full.
Potential DFA candidates for the Cubs to open a spot on the 40-man roster for Bard are … OF Dave Sappelt, OF Darnell McDonald, 3B Cody Ransom, C J.C. Boscan, and P Brookks Raley. I expect any of these players to be DFA. Maybe a few, since the Cubs will have to open a spot for Rafael Dolis and Scott Baker (both on the 60-day DL) and both are close to returning to game action.
I do see the Cubs acquiring Bard for a low-tier prospect of whom has no future with the Cubs. I see a trade going down in the next few days.