The Cubs must trade Matt Garza
While Ryan Dempster is the pitcher mentioned frequently in trade talks as the trade deadline approaches, Matt Garza is the pitcher the Cubs should be actively pushing to other teams. The move didn’t make sense when Jim Hendry shipped off five players, including top prospects Hak-Ju Lee and Chris Archer, for the Tampa Bay pitcher prior to the 2011 season.
The Cubs were likely to be at the back of the National League central division and trading away top prospects to land a top- flight starter for a team desperately needing to build the farm system was a head scratcher. This move was incredibly short-sighted and was one of the final nails in the coffin for the fired Hendry.
Garza is under team control for one more year and figures to command over 12 million dollars in arbitration this winter. The team and Garza are said to be in negotiations regarding a contract extension and depending on the talks could quicken the pace in which the Cubs front office looks to trade the 28- year old right hander.
With a proven track record in the postseason and success in the toughest division in baseball, the American League east, the Yankees, Red Sox figure to bid on the services of the former Ray and Minnesota Twin.
Further aiding the Cubs and their potential trade of Garza is the inclusion of an extra wild-card team in each league. The extra team will mean an additional three to five teams in each league vying for a post-season berth. The Cubs would love nothing more than a bidding war to break thereby enriching the potential haul in return for the starter who is only 12-14 as a Cub, but possesses better stuff than his record would indicate.
Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer should forgo inking Garza to a four or five year deal for approximately 15 million per season, and try to recoup as many prospects as possible to build a decimated farm system.
The Cubs will not get a haul similar to the one the Cubs were foolish enough to give Tampa Bay, but signing him to that type of contract would be every bit as foolish as trading for him in the first place.