Matt Garza (left) and Jeff Samardzija (right) goofing off before a game last season. (Michael Zagaris/Getty Images)
Samardzija's former teammate Matt Garza, who is now with the first-place Brewers (18-7), told Samardzija, through reporters, that he needs to "pitch [his] way out of there," if he doesn't want to stay with the Cubs.
"All I can tell him is keep pitching — pitch your way out of it," Garza said. "Keep your eyes focused, your eyes straight ahead and just pitch. There's nothing else you can do."
Garza signed with the Cubs in 2011 before Chicago traded him to the Rangers last season. He signed a four-year, $50 million contract with Milwaukee this offseason.
"I told [Samardzija], 'It doesn't matter, dude. You play in Chicago,'" Garza said. "'I was there, and I lost 30 wins in three seasons. It's not your fault. You pitch your way out of there.'"
Garza, who beat the Cubs on Friday, was 21-18 with a 3.45 ERA in 60 starts for Chicago.
Samardzija, 29, is 29-37 with a 4.03 ERA in 194 appearances (71 starts) and is in his seventh season with the Cubs. He won't be a free agent until after the 2015 season but has been a constant source of trade rumors.
He avoided salary arbitration this past offseason by signing a one-year, $5.345 million deal.
Samardzija is scheduled to start for the Cubs in Cincinnati on Monday night.