Various media outlets have reported this morning that the Orioles are interested in acquiring Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija. Although Samardzija’s 1-4 record wouldn’t normally indicate that he is an elite starting pitcher, his ERA of 1.68 is 2nd best in all of Major League Baseball. Also he’s certainly inserted himself into the NL Cy Young race with his dominating performances despite his win-loss record. Samardzija would instantly become the ace of the Orioles pitching staff.
Acquiring Samardzija would certainly come with a hefty price tag . Samardzija has developed into one of the most reliable starting pitchers in all of Major League Baseball and upon acquiring him the Orioles would have Samardzija under contract until the end of the 2015 season. Samardzija does not have a history of arm injuries which makes him an even more attractive trade option.
So what would the Cubs want from the Orioles for Samardzija?
Jonathan Schoop’s name has been mentioned as a possible trade chip, but I doubt that the Cubs would be interested in Schoop considering the plethora of middle infield prospects the Cubs have throughout their organization.
The Orioles have 4 very good pitching prospects like Kevin Gausman, Dylan Bundy, Hunter Harvey, and Eduardo Rodriguez. The Cubs would certainly want at least 2 of these guys, preferably 2 of the first 3 mentioned.
Is that too high of a price to pay? Possibly, especially after considering there is no guarantee Samardzija would want to resign with the Orioles.
However, Samardzija would certainly be an upgrade in the Orioles starting rotation and would make them a serious World Series contender at least for the next 2 seasons.
Interesting fact, Samardzija played college football at Notre Dame and holds the record for most career receptions in Notre Dame history.
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