Chicago Cubs: Looking at trade partners for Jose Quintana

(Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)
(Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Cubs
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Chicago Cubs: What exactly is Quintana’s value?

This is a hard question to answer. Since 2016, Quintana actually ranks 16th in fWAR among all pitchers, just behind Kyle Hendricks. If nothing else, he has been extremely steady.

The Cubs made the smart move in accepting Quintana’s $11.5 million club option for this season. There is a good chance that he will be considered a staple of the rotation.

Yet, his last two seasons with the Cubs have felt like disappointments, in part because they gave up a pair of top prospects (Eloy Jimenez and Dylan Cease) to acquire him from the White Sox in 2017.

Quintana posted a 4.03 ERA in 2018 and a 4.68 ERA in 2019 after he collapsed in September. He has had his moments, but ultimately has not been able to be that dependable No. 3 type guy–with upside–that the Cubs thought they were getting.

In spite of the September shenanigans, however, Quintana’s peripherals stacked up pretty well against his 2017 campaign, in part because he slashed his walk rate.

His velocity may be declining, but Quintana has been effective using the cut fastball and mixing in his curveball. Not to mention, he was never a power pitcher in the first place.

Quintana will be 31 in January, so he is still pretty young. He also projects well in terms of longevity because he relies more on finesse.

Most importantly, he has a very tradable salary at a time where a number of contenders need quality starting pitching. However, he will also be a free agent after the 2020 season.

With that in mind, who are the teams that would be the likeliest trade partners for the Cubs?