Cubs Trade Matt Garza to Rangers
After weeks of speculation, the Chicago Cubs have officially dealt right-handed pitcher Matt Garza to the Texas Rangers. So far this season, Garza has posted a 6-1 record and 3.17 ERA. In return, the Cubs will be receive Mike Olt, C.J. Edwards, Justin Grimm and a player to be named later.
- Read more about the story here
The Cubs will acquire Triple-A infielder Mike Olt, Class-A right-hander C.J. Edwards, right-hander Justin Grimm and a fourth player to be named later from the Rangers, a source told ESPN’s Jim Bowden.
Garza, 29, pitched to a 3.45 ERA in 60 starts as a Cub dating back to 2011. He is seen as an ace, and his 3.17 ERA (lowest of his career), 7.9 K/9, and 3.1 K/BB ratios in 11 starts this year show that. The Rangers filled a huge need for starting pitching as they have been decimated by injuries to starters Matt Harrison, Alexi Ogando, and Colby Lewis this season. Garza will be a free agent after this year so the Rangers will need to offer a big extension or watch him walk this winter.
Olt, 24, was ranked as the Rangers’ second-best prospect by Baseball America entering this year. He had a 2012 season to remember, hitting .288 with a .398 OBP, 28 home runs, and 82 RBIs in just 95 games at AA Frisco. He even got 40 at-bats in the major leagues in the summer but still hasn’t hit his first big league home run. His prospect stock has taken a hit this season as he was batting just .213 in AAA Round Rock and has been suffering from a left eye injury. Veteran and teammate Manny Ramirez tutored him to help fix his problems there before the trade. Olt should be back in the major leagues at some point this season.
Edwards, 21, fits the Cubs’ current strategy of loading up on young, hard-throwing pitchers. Edwards has struck out 122 batters in 93.1 innings in A Hickory with a 1.83 ERA in 18 starts. And Hickory is a hitters’ park. He has also allowed just 62 hits. A 48th-round pick in 2011, Edwards’ stock has risen tremendously.
Grimm, 24, has the most major league experience between these three. Grimm impressed early on this season with the major league Rangers, pitching to a 1.59 ERA in April and becoming a trendy fantasy baseball pickup. But he soon became overmatched, pitching to a 7.50 ERA in 14 starts since. The three-pitch pitcher sits in the low-to-mid-90s with the fastball with a changeup and curveball that are works in progress, although the curveball has potential. He doesn’t strike out a ton of guys but relies on good command that has failed him so far in the big leagues because of all the home runs he’s been giving up.
The Cubs see major league potential in all three guys and will also receive a player to be named later from a predetermined list of players agreed upon, which could be right-hander Neil Ramirez.
Photo Source: Dennis Wierzbicki - USA TODAY Sports