Trade Talk
July 7, 2008
With Sabathia gone, Cubs look to Harden
The Cubs' pipe dream was ace left-hander C.C. Sabathia, but he's headed from the Cleveland Indians to the Milwaukee Brewers in a deal that is expected to become official today. The Cubs have spent a lot of time on the phone recently with Oakland Athletics general manager Billy Beane trying to pry away right-hander Rich Harden. Expect the phone lines to start burning a little hotter beginning today. Waiting for Harden could last right up to the July 31.(Chicago Sun-Times)
Rays lead teams courting Fuentes
The Marlins, Yankees, Mets, Red Sox, Phillies, A's, Cubs, Cardinals, and Rays all have a need and have expressed interest in acquiring Colorado reliever Brian Fuentes. But Tampa Bay is preparing to make the most aggressive play for the Rockies' closer, according to a major-league source. The Rays had a scout at Coors Field again Saturday. Opposing executives who have spoken with Tampa Bay say the Rays are determined to bolster their bullpen in an attempt to create separation between them and the Red Sox. (Denver Post)
Boston looking for long and short-term help
While the Sox have obvious needs in the bullpen and starting lineup one major league evaluator indicated yesterday that the Sox have inquired with many clubs about potential prospects at catcher and shortstop. The Sox have long-term needs at both those areas given the age of catcher Jason Varitek (36) and the relatively disappointing performance of shortstop Julio Lugo. As for their short-term needs, the Sox are among many clubs closely monitoring Mark Teixeira, who is approaching free agency and could be dealt this month unless Atlanta's fortunes take a dramatic turn for the better, indicating some concern about the health of designated hitter David Ortiz. As for the Sox' obvious need for a setup man, according to one source, the Sox' ideal reliever would be left-handed, suggesting they might be players for either Pittsburgh's Damaso Marte or Colorado's Brian Fuentes.(Boston Herald)
Lidge deal could lead to Bedard
For $37.5 million the Phillies locked up a good part of their future, and maybe Brett Myers' future as well, when they signed closer Brad Lidge to a three-year extension. Now, they need to go out and secure the present by acquiring Erik Bedard or some other top-of-the-rotation pitcher. It could happen. The Phils were in the hunt for Cleveland's C.C. Sabathia before he was dealt to Milwaukee. Put it this way: the Phils are definitely trying to make something happen. Sabathia, the Indians ace, would have been the first choice here, although Bedard, a summer rental in Seattle, would not be a bad Plan B. What Lidge has done for the Phils' best-in-the league bullpen, Bedard, or someone of that ilk, would do for the rotation. (Trenton Times)

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide - from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Seth Davis, and more - delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.