Things are not exactly progressing well in the Cubs’ and Blue Jays’ trade talks over ace pitcher Jeff Samardzija. The word used by Fox Sports’ Jon Paul Morosi to describe the current state of negotiations is “stalemate.”
I would’ve gone with Mexican stand-off, but I’ve probably just seen too many action movies.
And the reason for the stalemate, stand-off or whatever else you want to call it? Simply this: The Blue Jays are unwilling to part with the package of prospects the Cubs are demanding.
The Cubs have evaluated the Jays’ farm system, and there are strong indications they would trade Samardzija to Toronto if the Jays offered Triple-A right-hander Aaron Sanchez, Double-A left-hander Daniel Norris, and Class-A center fielder Dalton Pompey.
The problem: The Jays maintain they won’t include Sanchez, Norris and Pompey in the same offer for Samardzija — or any other available player, including Tampa Bay ace David Price.
The Jays may be willing to trade one or two players from that group. But not all three. At least, not yet.
The Jays’ position could clearly change if another team were to jump in with a major offer for Samardzija. With several weeks left to go before the deadline, the Cubs can afford to bide their time and let the offers roll in.
Theo Epstein won’t get out of this process without scoring a big-time package of prospects. It’s not often you get to deal a pitcher of Samardzija’s value. You better make the most of such an opportunity when it comes along.
The Yankees, Giants and Mariners are believed to be among the teams who are also interested in Samardzija.