The common theme for the Chicago Cubs this season has been their starting pitching. With injuries to Randy Wells and Andrew Cashner, and the top three in the rotation not pitching to their level of expectation the Cubs starting rotation has been a disappointment this season. Most of that blame falls on the temporary fourth and fifth starters in the rotation Casey Coleman and James Russell.
But with Randy Wells about a week away, and Doug Davis taking over as the fifth starter the Cubs rotation figures to solidify over the next few weeks. Though, Andrew Cashner will likely be sidelined until mid-July, though some believe that the Cubs may eventually shutdown Cashner for the rest of the season. It is too early to tell if that will be the case, but the Cubs are mulling over their options.
According to Jon Heyman (Via MLB Trade Rumors), the Cubs are among three teams that are showing interest in free agent starting pitcher Kevin Millwood. The Los Angeles Angels and Boston Red Sox were the other two teams that were mentioned as possible suitors for Millwood.
The Cubs interest in Millwood does not make too much sense. As with Randy Wells being close to a return, and Doug Davis looking like the solution for the fifth starter’s spot the Cubs rotation does not appear to have any areas of need. Unless of course, Davis struggles out of the fifth spot in the rotation. Even then, the Cubs could turn to other options in the minor leagues such as Ramon Ortiz, Jay Jackson, or another young pitcher that is ready to make their major league debut.
Having opted out of his contract with the Yankees this season on May 1, Millwood is likely to get the major league minimum from any team that signs him. So it would not be a financial risk for the Cubs to sign him. But regardless, the Cubs do not have a desperate need for Millwood. If signed by the Cubs, Millwood would serve as an insurance policy while pitching in Triple A-Iowa.