Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times is reporting that the Cubs are now in the driver’s seat for Garza with the Rangers now having turned their financial attentions elsewhere.
A major-league source said Tuesday the Cubs were close to trading for the power-pitching right-hander, just as the Rangers were committing a big multiyear deal to third baseman Adrian Beltre and appeared to be pursuing free-agent closer Rafael Soriano. Those efforts come after the Rangers fell short in their efforts to use the money to keep big-ticket free-agent pitcher Cliff Lee.
Bob Harkins of NBC Sports cites the same story in his report from overnight as well. There has previously been smoke here with Garza and the Cubs. Additionally, if the Rangers were to sign Soriano, the Rays would get the Rangers’ 1st round pick and not the Red Sox as Soriano ranks higher on the Elias Type A rankings than Adrian Beltre.
Last month, R.J. Anderson laid out a template for a deal between the Rays and the Cubs in which he compared it to the A’s trading Dan Haren to the Diamondbacks for a very nice haul of prospects.
Trading Garza, who stands to make approximately $5m in arbitration this season, opens up a rotation spot for Jeremy Hellickson. The move would also puts the spotlight on the organization’s pitching depth in the minor leagues should something happen to someone in the starting rotation.