Trade deadline passes with no new moves by Cubs
BY GORDON WITTENMYER firstname.lastname@example.org July 31, 2013 3:29PM
Updated: July 31, 2013 10:17PM
The most active seller in baseball for most of July finished the month with a whimper as Wednesday’s trading deadline passed without another deal by the Cubs.
The Cubs, who traded five major league players earlier this month, had several more on the block going into the final days before the non-waiver trading deadline, including outfielders David DeJesus and Nate Schierhotz and closer Kevin Gregg.
The best late possibility appeared to come from division rival St. Louis which briefly discussed acquiring catcher Dionner Navarro after placing Yadier Molia on the disabled list (knee).
“We never really got that close actually in the last couple of days of doing anything,” general manager Jed Hoyer said. “The last couple of days we had a lot of irons in the fire but never really got that close.
“I guess the good thing is we felt we were incredibly productive this month. We made a lot of deals, and I feel we got a lot better as an organization this month.”
On July 2, the Cubs traded Scott Feldman and Steve Clevenger to the Orioles and sent embattled reliever Carlos Marmol to the Dodgers. The total haul for the two deals included relievers Matt Guerrier and Pedro Strop, starter Jake Arrieta, prospects and international signing-slot space for amateur free agents.
Since then, they traded Scott Hairston, Matt Garza and Alfonso Soriano for more prospects.
But they fell short in efforts to move Gregg, Navarro, DeJesus and Schierholtz. They also discussed deals for pitchers James Russell and Carlos Villanueva with other teams.
“We felt like we had a high, but not unreasonably high, price on some guys,” Hoyer acknowledged. “A lot of the guys being asked about were being controlled going forward. I feel like [not trading those players] makes our winter potentially a little easier.”
One of those players was Jeff Samardzija, the Opening Day starter with two more winters of arbitration eligibility left. Despite teams asking about him, talks never got serious, said Hoyer, who added efforts at extending Samardzija on a multi-year deal will be one of the team’s off-season priorities.
Hoyer also said the team will look into possible, and slightly more complicated, waiver deals in August.
“We just didn’t have the value there to make any deals today,” he said. “It’s fine. Our July was really productive, and we’re happy about it. And now we move forward.”
Teams can still trade after the non-waiver deadline, but are subject to waiver rules. None of the players the Cubs sought to trade are believed to be candidates to clear waivers.