I started writing this post this morning, as I pick it back up the Cubs made their first move by trading Jimmy Anderson for Andrew Shipman of the Boston Red Sox. The Cubs also get a player to be named later. Now to the rest of the post.
After last night moves will happen around the league. Brenley is out of Arizona, Boston is headed down hill, and the Cubs are only three back. Last nights game in the Bronx was a real joy to watch, other than the Yankees winning.
The trade winds are really starting to blow, but what is on the Cubs shopping list? Jim Hendry says that the Cubs Baseball Tonight started a little rumor that the Cubs could be dealing with the Red Sox. That may or may not be true, but lets look at a couple of players that Cubs could be looking at.
Cubs need-Relief Pitching, SS. This is a lot less than last season as the Cubs needed pitching, CF, and a 3B. The Cubs made a lot of moves to bring them in. This season again the Cubs need a good hitting SS. Ramon has filled in well and Alex of course has his hitting woes. Of course the Cubs added another soft hitting SS in Rey Ordonez.
What the Cubs have to trade. They have pitching and a 2B to trade. The Cubs have tons on pitching in the minors and with Angel Guzman getting close to the majors, they could part with a starter at the Major League level. Who would this be? Well, the Cubs could trade Glendon Rusch or Matt Clement because both players would be free agents at the end of the year. The other chip the Cubs have is the extra second baseman they have. With Walker and Grudzielanek the Cubs have some wiggle room, but I doubt they trade on or the other. Now lets look at the players on the list.
Starting with Relief Pitching. I believe the Cubs are not as in need as some people think they are. Fist Mike Remlinger has not played much at all this season. Once he is back to 100% then the Cubs pen really takes shape. Farnsworth and Hawkins have both been really solid. Plus they can move Rusch back to the pen once Wood gets back.
I offer a couple of options that the Cubs will look at.
Scott Sullivan. The Royals made a push this year to win their division, but their pitching is still really young and probably a couple of years off. They raised the White Flag last week when they finally dealt Beltran. Sullivan has been a very used arm out the bullpen. From the years 1997-2001 he averaged about 105 innings a year. The last three years he has less innings, but he is still has pretty good numbers.
2004 Stats-38.1 innings, 3-1, 3.29 ERA, 30 K's, .271 avg against.
Ugueth Urbina. He went unsigned during the winter after the last seasons 38.1 innings, 2.81 ERA down the stretch. He finally was signed by the Tigers. The Tigers have been much better this season, but they are still two years off of making a playoff run. The signed a lot of veterans this season to probably trade towards the deadline to aquire a few guns for the next couple of seasons. From my point of view that is the best way to improve a terrible team from a year ago. Urbina proved his worth last season, and still could be very important to a team down the stretch.
2004 Stats-29.0 innings, 3-3, 4.35 ERA 35 K's, .220 avg against.
Jose Mesa- Talk about somebody I don't want to see. Jose has looks a little better this year, but lets not make this move. I guess another call up from AAA Pittsburgh is not out of the question. He only has one blown save all year, but can that last.
2004 Stats- 33.0 innings, 2-0, 18 Saves, 2.45 ERA, .283 avg against.
Part Two Later.