Conflicting reports arose Monday night regarding a potential deal that could bring James Shields to the Chicago Cubs from the San Diego Padres.
Matt Spiegel of 670 AM The Score got Cubs Twitter fired up, firing off this beauty during the Cubs-Rockies game.
Chicago reportedly made Shields a three-year offer, but, as we all know, the veteran right-hander ultimately headed west on a four-year, $75 million offer from the Padres.
With San Diego languishing, despite their massive overhaul this offseason, the team is reportedly shopping their ace – but even with what Spiegel heard, multiple reports, including this one from Buster Olney, suggest otherwise.
Once these reports surfaced, the obvious next question was simple: if not Shields, then who?
As both myself and co-editor Nicholas Blazek pointed out in recent days, fellow San Diego right-hander Tyson Ross appears to be the Cubs’ target in talks with the Friars.
Nicholas offered his thoughts earlier Monday, including this snippet:
"At 28, Ross could just now be coming into his prime and would give the Cubs another solid starter without having to give up the type of package that the Phillies want for Hamels. Acquiring a guy that won’t deplete top prospects will also allow the Cubs to pursue a position player as well without feeling they’re selling out for this season."
As he noted, Ross likely isn’t going to have any ace-like impact, despite the fact that he’s coming off the first All-Star selection of his big league career. He would, however, do the Cubs a great service in shoring up a pitching staff that has seen its share of issues at the back end.
Behind Jon Lester, Jake Arrieta and Jason Hammel, Chicago has trotted out a hodge podge of Travis Wood, Dallas Beeler, Kyle Hendricks and Donn Roach to make starts this season, which has been a mixed bag – at best.
With the San Diego right-hander penciled in alongside Hammel in the middle of the rotation, the Cubs go from having a major weakness in their staff.
But as we see from Sahadev Sharma above, whether or not the two sides can get together on a deal remains to be seen, despite the rampant rumors that are tearing up the Internet Monday.
There have been reports that San Diego and Chicago have discussed Starlin Castro, but whether or not the clubs are linking these pieces is unknown so far.