Many discussions have been had over the last few days here at the Saloon concerning the Cubs and their ability to trade for a starter between now and the trade deadline. At first I was in denial, thinking that any other team in the league should consider themselves lucky to be able to take Murton, Cedeno, etc. off our hands for the likes of some schlub named Sabathia or that Harden guy.
But I've come to my senses now. I don't believe the Cubs have enough trade chips in the minors to get a top of the line starter. So cross Sabathia and Rich Harden off the list. I'd lump in the usual suspects of Randy Wolf, A.J. Burnett, Kevin Millwood and Bronson Arroyo in the "No thank you" pile. I was so disgusted that Arroyo was even being mentioned as a possibility that I almost threw up when I read it. He can't pitch in the NL. He can't even pitch within our division. His ERA is a hefty 6.19. Thanks, but we already have one Jason Marquis on our team.
One name that has been kicked around that I could get behind is that of Aaron Cook, but a direct quote from Dan O'Dowd shoots that possibility down: "We're not doing anything with Cookie." The fact that O'Dowd refers to Cook as "Cookie" immediately makes me question his sexuality.
So cross all of the above guys off your list. Who's left? We may have to think outside the box a bit...
Nate Robertson: This may look like a decent pickup, and I assumme Robertson is available on the cheap. But what people may forget is that Robertson is a guy that has had only one decent year out of the 4+ he's been in the league. The question you have to ask is "Will this guy be a better option than Marquis/Marshall/Gallagher?" Unless you're a big believer in a switch of scenery doing worlds of good for Nasty Nate, I'll take a pass.
Zack Greinke - Now this is one I can get behind. I like Grienke and I think he falls into the "Good enough to make an impact, but not so good that it'll take a king's ransom to trade for him" category. He's got great control and a winning record for a bad Kansas City team. The Royals can always use a new...everything, so I don't think it would take too much to get him. Plus, rumor is that KC isn't ready to commit to him long-term because of the personal issues he's shown in the past.
Jake Westbrook - Look, Cleveland is out of the race this year. The sooner they realize this, the sooner they can get off their asses and trade Westbrook to the Cubs. I've always liked Westbrook and I think he's enough of a groundball pitcher to be good at Wrigley down the stretch. What's that you say? Westbrook just got moved to the 60- day DL? Aw shit...ok, if he ever comes back from injury before the trade deadline, put him on the radar.
Erik Bedard - He'd be a decent pickup, but only if he doesn't command too high a price. I think being the #4 guy in the rotation behind Zambrano, Lilly and Dempster would do him good. He doesn't seem to take well to the ace's role.
Ian Snell - Would a change of scenery work out for the once-good Snell? Or will he continue his descent into Suckassville? The fact that he would come over from Pittsburgh would make him all the easier for the Cubs to snag him. Knowing our trade history with the Pirates, maybe they'll throw in Jason Bay too.
Anyone on this list whet your appetite? I still think Greinke is the best fit, so hopefully he's available and Jim Hendry is on the phone about him already.
Thoughts, loyal readers?