Despite already trading for Jose Quintana, the Chicago Cubs want to add another starting pitcher, this time Yu Darvish from the Texas Rangers.
Texas has endured a disappointing season, and apparently general manager Jon Daniels is thinking about cashing in his biggest trade chip. Daniels has interest from the Chicago Cubs in starting pitcher Yu Darvish, who is scheduled to become a free agent after this season.
Darvish, who turns 31 years old on Aug. 16, is only 6-8 but with a 3.45 ERA this season. After missing all of 2015 and part of 2016 due to Tommy John surgery, the Japanese import looks dominant once more, posting 131 strikeouts in 125.1 innings.
Chicago doesn’t have much left to trade in its farm system for Darvish, having sent Eloy Jimenez to the White Sox in the Jose Quintana acquisition. However, Ian Happ was previously thought of as one of the best prospects in baseball before his promotion this spring. Perhaps the Rangers would be willing to work a deal around Happ as the centerpiece.
Darvish would give the Cubs another big arm in their quest for a second straight NL Central crown. The going has been tough for Chicago this year, which has trailed the Milwaukee Brewers for much of the campaign. However, Milwaukee has lost five consecutive contests including a four-game sweep at the hands of the red-hot Pittsburgh Pirates. Meanwhile, the Cubs have won six straight out of the All-Star break. The result is the Brewers leading the Central by a single game over Chicago, while Pittsburgh only three games off the pace.
Landing one more starting pitcher to go with Jon Lester, Jake Arrieta and Quintana could be the final blow to the Brewers, who have reportedly been trying to acquire Sonny Gray from the Oakland A’s.
It appears to be an arms race in the NL Central, and the Cubs could make the next big move.