Now that the Cubs season is about 3 weeks left to go, it’s a good time to look ahead toward the off-season. The Cubs aren’t expected to make a big free agent splash and more on the Maholm/DeJesus kind of deals. Also, the Cubs don’t have much to offer in trade that can keep helping them shape up their future. However, their are two players the Cubs could deal this Winter … OF Alfonso Soriano and SP Matt Garza. They by far have the most value, but both of them could be tricky to trade. For Soriano, he has 36 million left on his contract and teams won’t take all that on and may not even take a lot of that money on. So, if I’m the Cubs and they have to pay most of his contract and get little in return, he’s staying on the North Side. He’s easily having the best season as a Chicago Cub and I’m fine with keeping him. However, there are reports out there that Soriano went from the most overpaid player in baseball to the the most underrated and underpaid. As that means teams may offer value for him and the Cubs may get a good deal for him. If this trade proposal I am going to list does work, I think Soriano will be on his way out.

The proposal I think the Cubs should try is with the Arizona Diamondbacks:

The base of the trade will be Cubs’ Matt Garza for Diamondbacks’ OF Justin Upton.

The D’backs and Cubs were discussing Garza right before the deadline, but no deal was made. The one holdup in the deal could be … is Garza healthy enough. To me, he’ll be ready for next year and I hope teams don’t back away from Garza.

Upton is in a down year, but I think a change of scenery will help a lot. He’s an all-star OF who’s not even in his prime yet. He will look nice in the middle of the order. He has been booed for his defense this year, but he’s not that bad as a defender.

The trade would not just be for Garza for Upton straight up. Both teams will add players to the mix. The Cubs do need pitching more that anything, but if you can get Upton in a Garza deal, you cannot pass that up. Upton will make just under 10MM next year and just under 14.5MM the next 2 years.

Like I said, if the Cubs did acquire Upton, Soriano may be exiting. Unless the Cubs decide to trade DeJesus, which I think is more unlikely. This may be the only kind of big move, the Cubs make this off-season.

Look ahead to the batting order next season with Upton:
1) David DeJesus RF
2) Brett Jackson CF
3) Justin Upton LF
4) Anthony Rizzo 1B
5) Starlin Castro SS
6) Welington Castillo C
7) Luis Valbuena/Josh Vitters/???? 3B
8) Darwin Barney 2B
9) Jeff Samardzija P

The lineup still looks mediocre at best, but it’s the step in the right direction.

Do I see this trade happening? To be honest, I give it a 5% because there are too many obstacles to overcome. Manly Garza’s health and how effective he’ll be.

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