Chicago Cubs Rumors: Team nearing deal to acquire lefty Justin Wilson
By Jake Misener
According to multiple reports, the Chicago Cubs are nearing a deal to acquire Detroit Tigers’ left-hander Justin Wilson ahead of the trade deadline.
The Chicago Cubs and Detroit Tigers are nearing a deal for left-hander Justin Wilson and veteran catcher Alex Avila. Jeimer Candelario and Jimmy Paredes are reportedly headed to Detroit in the deal, along with either cash or a PTBNL.
Paredes hasn’t played above the low levels of the minors. Candelario has spent most of the last year at Triple-A Iowa, and struggled in brief stints with the big-league club.
For hours Sunday evening, rumors swirled connecting the reigning World Series champion Chicago Cubs to elite left-hander Justin Wilson. As midnight ticked closer, things seemed to move closer to being concrete.
Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reported shortly before 10 p.m. CT that the Cubs are “close to a deal” to land Wilson from the Tigers. Earlier in the night, the Iowa Cubs held both Mark Zagunis and Jeimer Candelario out of the lineup. This suggests Detroit has a high level of interest in these two prospects – and likely more names outside of just these two.
Wilson, 29, owns a 2.68 ERA on the year in 40 1/3 innings of work. In his career, his 3.20 ERA and 3.21 FIP suggest promising long-term trends, as well. The southpaw doesn’t hit the open market until 2019, giving the Cubs a high-end lefty in the pen moving forward.
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As we’ve seen in the past, even when things are supposedly close to being done ahead of the trade deadline, that doesn’t mean they’ll come to fruition. Chicago is bidding against the Dodgers, as well as the Nationals and Astros, for Wilson, according to the Detroit Free-Press.
Los Angeles appears poised for a World Series berth. Adding Wilson adds another weapon in the Dodgers’ pen. Of course, they already enjoy arguably the best closer in the game in Kenley Jansen.
But the rumored deal with Detroit may also include catcher Alex Avila. While Willson Contreras has the catching role locked down, a veteran presence is never a bad thing.
Candelario appears to be the main piece in the deal heading to Detroit.
The details are not available as the deal obviously isn’t final. But, as we saw with the Jose Quintana deal, the Cubs are looking to capitalize on their present window. Wilson (and Avila) fit that mindset and make the team much stronger heading into the final two months of the season.
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Chicago already has Mike Montgomery and Brian Duensing in the pen from the left side. But Wilson is a clear cut above these two lefties and could help bridge the gap from the middle innings to closer Wade Davis.