Saturday, January 8, 2011

Cubs Trade for Matt Garza

By: Clay

At first, I thought this was a good trade for the Cubs to make. Then, thanks to Harvey informing me on who the Cubs gave up, I didn't like it so much. But as of this morning, I'm OK with it.

The way I see it, the Cubs haven't had good luck with their farm system prospects over the past couple of decades. Or at least since Mark Grace! Sure there has been marginal success with Kerry Wood (The Prodigal Son Returns for 2011!), Mark Prior, Carlos Zambrano, Carlos Marmol and last years rookie sensations (Castro and Colvin) but there just hasn't been an actual MLB star player drafted and crafted by the Cubbies in many, many years.

If you haven't noticed, the Cubs have some terrible contracts out right now that are virtually unmovable and the Cubs are just gonna have to eat that. While their younger players are better and hungrier than their big money options, it seems hard to bench players like Soriano, Ramirez and Fukudome when you are paying them an ass load of cash. And even though they under-perform and can never seem to all play well at the same time, they are just owed too much money to ride the pine. Plus, if there was even a slim chance that the Cubs could trade one of them, they would have to play just so potential teams could see them perform. Their trade value won't rise by them sitting the bench.

We already have the positions filled for the guys we traded away, anyway. Pitcher Chris Archer, shortstop Hak-Ju Lee, outfielder Brandon Guyer, catcher Robinson Chirinos and outfielder Sam Fuld are the fellas going to Tampa. Archer is the only player that the Cubs could have made a spot for in the next couple years. Lee is blocked by Starlin Castro, Guyer is blocked by a handful of players, Chirinos is blocked by Soto and Welington Castillo. Though, I suppose I wouldn't have minded seeing Chirinos replacing Koyie Hill at some point but maybe Welington Castillo can fill that spot.

Garza has never had an ERA over 4.00 by the end of the season. Plus, pitching against the Pirates and Astros multiple times this season should help pad his stats if the Cubs needed to move Garza for some unforeseen reason. Or, if the Cubs do make a serious run for the playoffs in the next couple years, Garza has that experience and knows what it takes to reach that level.

Overall, this is a bad move for the long term of the Cubs if their front office is serious in trying to commit to winning with farm raised talent(Duh). However, Garza and Carlos Pena should help put a few more butts in the seats for the next season which means more money to spend on bad contracts. This is good for the players that the Cubs traded away, however. they have a better chance at succeeding with the Rays than they did with the Cubs.

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