Cubs trade 5 prospects for Matt Garza.
WTF? Ok, don't get me wrong, I don't hate this trade, like so many vocal others. I'll explain why in a bit, but this DOES seemingly run contrary to any reason expectation for 2011, which is total loss. To say otherwise is foolish. So, trading away 5 prospects for a solid starting pitcher seems foolhardy. Garza joins the ranks of Zambrano, Dempster, Wells, Cashner, and a gaggle of other good-very good pitchers in a rotation that's lacking a sense of elbow room. Which heads will fall next?
Having said that, I don't hate this trade for two reasons -
1. Garza coming to the NL, and especially the NL Central can be a force to be reckoned with a 15-10 record in the AL East is pretty hefty and nothing to shake a stick at. When Dempster and Zambrano depart, Garza could be 1/3 of a solid rotation with Wells and a PTBNL.
2. When you look at who we traded away -
Sam Fuld - going nowhere, but plucky.
Chris Archer - as naysayers have touted often and loudly, the Cubs have plenty of pitching. The Cubs would probably just F*ck him up anyway.
Brandon Guyer - Utility outfielder a.k.a. Tyler Colvin beta.
Robinson Chirinos - Power hitting catcher a.k.a. Geo Soto beta
Hak-Ju Lee - Sweet hitting and fielding shortstop a.k.a. Starlin Castro beta.
So we basically gave away 3 guys we already had and one guy who will be in several years the guy we just got. So what did we lose? 4 years of downtime waiting for Archer to cook all the way through - if he ever does.
Take a proven commodity over one who may or may not pan out. He won't be the savior of 2011, but he may do some good things in 12 or 13. Meantime, we can let the other guys go eat at the kids table.