Chicago Cubs are huge winners in the Andrew Chafin trade

(Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)
(Photo by David Banks/Getty Images) /

The A’s have added a big piece to their bullpen in their quest to take the AL West crown after completing a trade for Chicago Cubs left-hander Andrew Chafin late Monday night.

This marks the second domino to fall on the North Side after the Cubs sent outfielder Joc Pederson to the Atlanta Braves earlier this month. But there’s no doubt – this one leaves a much bigger hole on the roster, subtracting a go-to arm from the bullpen mix.

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Chafin has been nothing short of spectacular in a Cubs uniform this year, sporting a 2.06 ERA in a team-leading 43 appearances. His trade value was as high as it ever would be heading into trade deadline week. The Cubs will save $822,000 this year on salary – but this move wasn’t a cost-cutting one. It’s all about the guys coming back from Oakland.

Before we delve into the two prospects on the other side of the deal, it’s important to note the strong connection between the Cubs and Athletics. No, I’m not talking about the 2014 Addison Russell deal, either. Chicago’s VP of scouting, Dan Kantrovitz, spent years in Oakland – so he knows the prospect pool better than most.

Chicago Cubs: Getting to know the guys coming back in the Andrew Chafin deal

In return, the Cubs land the #9 prospect in Oakland’s farm system in outfielder Greg Deichmann. Deichmann is currently at the Triple-A level slashing .300/.432/.449 in 207 at-bats spanning 59 games for the Las Vegas Aviators.

Drafted out of LSU in the second round of the 2017 draft, Deichmann slashed .294/.383/.539 at the collegiate level, mashing 30 home runs and driving in 130 runs during that span. We’re talking about a player who could be at the big league level as soon as this year.

The other prospect headed to Chicago is right-hander Daniel Palencia with the Low-A affiliate Stockton Ports. The 21-year-old hasn’t put up the numbers this year, with an ERA of 6.14 in six starts. He was signed as a free agent by Oakland last February but, due to the pandemic wiping out the MiLB season in 2020, this season is his first professional campaign.

He’s not a Top 30 guy for the Athletics, according to Baseball America – but the stuff is definitely there. Palencia can run it up into the triple-digits with a plus offspeed offering. He’s just lacking experience given the cancelled 2020 campaign. Give him some time to get his feed under him.

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The meat and potatoes of this trade is clearly the acquisition of Greg Deichmann with Palencia as an added bonus should be pan out. Should Deichmann continue playing at the level he is at currently, he will be a big boost to the Chicago offense in the near future. The numbers and potential are both there.