Dan's Dugout: Trade Frenzy to Follow Cubs Swap? • Latino Sports

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Dan’s Dugout: Trade Frenzy to Follow Cubs Swap?

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If the World Champions are willing to do it, the rest of the baseball world will soon follow suit.

For the second year in a row, the Chicago Cubs have fired the first shot in the trading wars.

They made tabloid headlines Thursday by sending four prospects across town in exchange for White Sox

Jose Quintana moves across town Credit: Getty Images

Jose Quintana moves across town
Credit: Getty Images

southpaw Jose Quintana.

The Houston Astros, Los Angeles Dodgers, and New York Yankees are among the suitors left standing. All plan to redouble their efforts on such other available aces as Justin Verlander (Tigers) and Julio Teheran (Braves).

Last year, the Cubs beat the trading deadline by shipping four minor-leaguers to the New York Yankees for Aroldis Chapman, the Cuban closer with the howitzer arm.

The two-month rental paid off with the first world championship for the Little Bears since 1908.

Quintana, 28, breathes new life into a rotation loaded with underachievers. Just last Sunday, Jon Lester gave up 10 runs to the Pittsburgh Pirates in the very first inning. Officially, just four of the runs were earned – but that’s still no solace to Wrigley fans who watched their ace lefthander go just two-thirds of an inning.

Now there’s another lefty in town.

Quintana, who follows Chris Sale out of Comiskey, started slowly this season but has been showing signs of reviving lately. He’ll surely pitch against the Arizona Diamondbacks in the series that starts the second half Friday.

Jake Arrieta is way off his Cy Young form this year

Jake Arrieta is way off his Cy Young form this year

Now the question is whether his addition will spur holdovers Jack Arrieta, Jon Lackey, and Lester to start pitching the way they did last year.

And maybe, just maybe, Theo Epstein isn’t done. Never one to rest on his laurels, he could be angling for Verlander too – if the Ricketts family is willing to spring for the big bucks his contract carries.

Detroit, in a rebuilding mode, is listening to offers. But few teams can afford the durable righthander.

The Milwaukee Brewers, a surprise contender in the National League Central, might also enter the fray – if only to keep the Cubs from running away and hiding in the division.

Milwaukee has the bats but needs the arms. And former MVP Ryan Braun has been rumored to be the on the block for years.

Like Verlander, he carries a weighty contract.

Also available for trade this month are Neil Walker, Lucas Duda, and Jay Bruce (Mets); Adrian Gonzalez (Dodgers), Pablo Sandoval (Red Sox), Hunter Pence (Giants), and Todd Frazier (White Sox).

About Dan Schlossberg

Former AP sportswriter Dan Schlossberg of Fair Lawn, NJ has produced 35 baseball books, including autobiographies of Ron Blomberg, Al Clark, and Milo Hamilton. Also a broadcaster, he is the host and executive producer of Braves Banter and Travel Itch Radio and a contributor to Sirius XM.

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