As you probably heard over the weekend, it’s rumored that the Toronto Blue Jays are “putting together a package” of young players to entice the Cubs to trade starter Jeff Samardzija. Over at The Loxas Factor, Tom Loxas says a deal could be close. My information is less optimistic.
I was told by a reliable source over the weekend that the chances the Blue Jays would be able to put together a package that would pry Samardzija away from the Cubs is “pretty remote.” Chances are that the Blue Jays aren’t going to want to give up young arms like Marcus Stroman or Aaron Sanchez in exchange for a second / third starter with two years left on his contract. To get Samardzija, it would certainly take one of those prospects, if not both. I’ve been told, and Toronto GM Alez Anthopoulos confirmed yesterday, that there is currently no deal on the table for Samardzija.
The real problem for the Cubs is Samardzija’s inflated opinion of his value. In order to move Samardzija, the Cubs are going to have to find a team that not only is willing to give up young arms in return, but is also willing 1) to rent Samardzija for 2014 & 2015, or 2) is willing to extend him and pay him like the ace he perceives himself to be. An awful lot of things have to go right in order to the Cubs to find a good trading partner for Samardzija. That’s not to say the stars won’t align in such a way that makes everyone happy, but I don’t think the stars aligning is as close as we’ve been led to believe.
For what it’s worth, I get the sense that Samardzija really doesn’t want to leave Chicago, and I don’t think the Cubs really want to move him, either. Let’s see who blinks first: Samardzija or the Cubs front office.
The Twitterverse had a good time last night pitting my sources (who say a deal is NOT close) against Tom’s sources (who say a deal could be close). Let me just take a moment to say that I have great respect for Tom and his reporting. Also? This isn’t a contest. Tom and I are friends, and we’ve both been lucky enough to get scoops from time to time. Sources aren’t always right. We’re all out here doing the best we can. Keep in mind that most of us bloggers also have “real” jobs that take up most of our time. When another blogger scoops everyone, I’m happy for him or her. We’re all on the same side here, let’s keep that in mind.