It is readily apparent that the Chicago Cubs are going to deal 29-year-old staff ace Jeff Samardzija prior to the trade deadline late next month. He is set to become a free agent following the 2015 season and Chicago is looking more towards the future.
Paying Samardzija ace money on a last place team, especially when he will be on the wrong side of 30, makes little sense for the rebuilding Cubs.
Now that Chicago has reportedly started trade discussions for Samardzija, one team has come up as a top candidate to land his services. The first place San Francisco Giants, who boast the best record in baseball, seem to be the favorites to land Chicago’s ace at this point.
Nightengale does mention five other potential landing spots for Samardzija, who promises to be in high demand over the course of the next six weeks.
The former Notre Dame football player is 10 games under .500 with a 3.99 ERA in 203 career appearances (80 starts). In addition to that, Samardzija has lost six of his eight decisions this season. The primary reason for his struggles from a win-loss standpoint, has been the lack of offensive production in Chicago. Once he goes to a contending team, the hard-throwing righty will see an uptick in that category.
Pure conjecture here, but the Oakland Athletics and Atlanta Braves are two other teams that could end up showing real interest in Samardzija when all is said and done.