The whole notion of buyers and sellers in terms of in-season trades in Major League Baseball has been muddied by the addition of wild card teams in the playoffs. That is not to say that is a bad thing; it is just the reality of the system that more teams are contenders later in the season.
The Chicago Cubs already know they are sellers. They are in the middle of a long process of stockpiling prospects to rebuild their big league team and their farm system.
The Cubs are doing it right. Besides having talented players in the pipeline, they are doing well when it comes to managing the situations with veteran players. Part of that ability, of course, is the recognition when those players can be traded for more prospects.
As Jesse Rogers of ESPNChicago reports, that process should begin soon with a number of players. Besides the obvious trade target in ace Jeff Samardzija, Rogers notes that the Cubs could also look to deal starting pitcher Jason Hammel, outfielder Nate Schierholtz, and relief pitcher Jose Veras.
Of that group Hammel seems the most likely candidate for the kind of deal the Cubs would have in mind. In terms of an asset teams will deal prized prospects to acquire at the deadline, a starting pitcher will always be at the top of the list. If teams like the New York Yankees or Los Angeles Angels are still hanging around playoff contention, skinny though both their farm systems appear to be, they would likely head the list of teams interested in Hammel.