Chicago Cubs must exercise caution with Tyler Glasnow

Looking over the trade scenario involving Tyler Glasnow to the Chicago Cubs, and why the team needs to exercise caution in doing so.

Wild Card Series - Texas Rangers v Tampa Bay Rays - Game One
Wild Card Series - Texas Rangers v Tampa Bay Rays - Game One / Julio Aguilar/GettyImages

With the Chicago Cubs primarily at the forefront of the Shohei Ohtani sweepstakes, it's important to remember the trickle-down effect that will ensue if the front office misses on their primary target this winter. One candidate who keeps popping up in trade rumors and is a perfect fit for the team is Tampa Bay Rays ace Tyler Glasnow. However, we need to address why the team must exercise caution in acquiring his services.

Yes, the Chicago Cubs are a perfect fit for Tyler Glasnow. The Rays are looking for MLB-ready starting pitching in return, and the front office has done a marvelous job adding depth to this roster and farm system for a move such as this. The issue I keep running into with Glasnow is that his injury concerns are much more glaring than just regular concerns; they're highly problematic. In his eight-year career, Glasnow, in 2023, finally reached 120.0 IP for the first time.

Granted, when Glasnow is on his game, he's one of the better pitchers in baseball. The numbers he has recorded are impressive. But how gung-ho should the Cubs front office be to acquire his services this winter? The answer lies in the cost for Glasnow. Of course, the Cubs would be foolish to offer any top 100 prospect for one year of Glasnow, with so much injury history. But to add a couple of guys with MLB experience that the team doesn't foresee being a significant part of the team's future? Then, it gets a little more interesting.

Let's remember first that the Rays can't expect to get an actual haul for Glasnow. If they wanted that, they should have moved him last year, when he has two years and 30.0M left on his contract, rather than one year at 25.0M, given the contract's structure. Is Hayden Wesneski and Keegan Thompson enough to get a deal of this nature done? We've seen both show high potential but never fully pan out. Those two arms each with multiple years of team-control may be an interesting scenario, but again, this is assuming everything else falls through the cracks in the trade market.

If the Cubs can land Juan Soto in a trade, they will gladly move these guys as part of the package in return for the perennial before ever considering anything to do with Glasnow.

In short, Glasnow is a feasible option if all else fails. The team needs to be clever regarding its options for selling off a newly fortified farm system. They have the prospect depth to pull off trades for both players in Soto and Glasnow, hypothetically. Depleting your farm for two players in the final year of their contracts before reaching free agency, on the other hand, may prove to be the wrong path forward.

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