Cubs To Make A Push For Javier Vazquez


Beyond Ryan Dempster and Carlos Zambrano, the rest of the Chicago Cubs starting rotation is unclear. Randy Wells, who had a strong rookie season,  fell off the map a little during his sophomore campaign as he had a record of 8-14 with an ERA of 4.26. Despite the poor season, Wells figures to remain in the rotation. Leaving two spots open, one which will probably be filled by a veteran free agent.

During his radio show “Talkin Baseball” on ESPN Radio 1000, Bruce Levine reported that the Chicago Cubs are expected to make  push to sign Javier Vazquez over the next month. With the Yankees this past season, Vazquez struggled as he had a record of 10-10 with and ERA of 5.32.

Despite his struggles with the Yankees, Vazquez in my opinion is still a very good mid-rotation starter. Especially if he returns to the National League, where in his only year in the NL with the Atlanta Braves in 2009, Vazquez was a Cy Young candidate as he had a record of 15-10 with an ERA of 2.87.

The Chicago Cubs are an ideal fit for Vazquez, considering what the Cubs are looking for. The Cubs are looking for a mid rotation starter, who can pitch deep into games, and Vazquez typically goes over 200 innings pitched per season for his career. For the most part, Vazquez is a strikeout pitcher as he has a K ration of 8.07/9 for his career.

Whether or not the Cubs have enough money to afford Vazquez is a different story. The Florida Marlins, Washington Nationals, Colorado Rockies, and Baltimore Orioles are among teams along with the Cubs to express interest in Vazquez. The expectation is that Vazquez is that he will likely get a short term deal with low money, almost as to improve his stock after a poor year with the Yankees. If that is the case, the Chicago Cubs should be able to afford him. For what it is worth, the Nationals are expected to make an offer to Vazquez this week.

In a separate report, MLB Daily Dish is reporting that along with Vazquez, the Cubs have expressed interest in Jeremy Bonderman, Kevin Millwood, Jon Garland, and Vicente Padilla. They suggest that the Cubs will likely choose Padilla, considering that he may be the cheapest option of the five mentioned. However, the Chicago Cubs already have Vicente Padilla on their roster in the form of Carlos Silva.

The best options for the Cubs are either Vazquez or Garland. Both have the capabilities of being a #1 pitcher of a rotation in the National League. Garland had a very good season with the San Diego Padres, as he pitched 200 innings and had a record of 14-12 with an ERA of 3.47. I’d imagine that these are the top pitching targets for the Cubs, if they miss on both, they may look at Bonderman as a backup option.