The Oakland Athletics pulled off what may end up being the best trade of this season when they decided to part ways with top prospect Addison Russel to acquire pitchers Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel from the Chicago Cubs. It’s a trade that has Cubs fans understandably up in arms over yet another lost season but the A’s are starting to come around and they just got a major boost from two pitchers many thought would be dealt separately.
According to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, the Cubs were quick to deal Hammel when they did as they were afraid waiting any longer might oversaturate the market with similar pitchers, thus lowering Hammel’s value.
Samardzija was the prized jewel for the A’s in their Fourth of July trade with the Cubs but Hammel is more than just a Cracker Jack prize to play with. He’s a serviceable pitcher who the A’s can now use in a number of different ways as they try to surge in the AL West which is still wide open.
Chicago wanted to move both players, it was just a surprise to see it done in the same trade though as many believed the CUbs were after multiple prospects. Addison Russell isn’t just an ordinary prospect though and moving Hammel when they did to land Russell may end up being the best idea the Cubs have made in a while.