Chicago Cubs Rumors: Lucas Giolito trade shows high price for starting pitching

The Chicago White Sox trade of starting pitcher Lucas Giolito may provide insight into why the Chicago Cubs have an inclination to trade Marcus Stroman.
Chicago Cubs v Chicago White Sox
Chicago Cubs v Chicago White Sox / Quinn Harris/GettyImages

The Chicago White Sox may have provided insight into the reason why the Chicago Cubs may be leaning toward trading starting pitcher Marcus Stroman at the Major League Baseball Trade Deadline on August 1.

On Wednesday night, the Chicago White Sox traded starting pitcher Lucas Giolito and relief pitcher Reynaldo Lopez to the Los Angeles Angels in exchange for catching prospect Edgar Quero and pitching prospect Ky Bush.

What was fascinating about the White Sox trade with the Angels is that the team received two of Los Angeles' top three prospects.

The initial reaction is that the Angels may have overpaid given the fact that they gave away two top-three organizational prospects for a starting pitcher and relief pitcher that will be free agents at the end of the season.

The Giolito established two truths in regard to the deadline. The two truths are that it is a seller's market and there is a high price on starting pitching.

The attention now turns to the Cubs and Marcus Stroman.

With the San Diego Padres remaining firm in their stance of not trading Blake Snell and the Los Angeles Angels taking Shohei Ohtani off the trade market, Stroman is now in a position where he may be the best-starting pitcher on the trade market.

That may be the driving factor for why the Cubs decide to move Stroman before the deadline.

One thing that needs to be said is that it is unlikely that the Cubs will get an offer for Stroman like the one the White Sox received from the Angels. The difference is that Stroman is in the midst of some serious struggles as he has an ERA of 8.00 and WHIP of 1.85 over the course of his last 6 starts. The other difference is the White Sox's inclusion of Lopez, who has value as a high-velocity reliever that can pitch multiple innings.

Despite that, it seems likely that there would be a team willing to overpay on Stroman in the belief that he can revert back to being the pitcher that he was during the first half of the season.

The question that Jed Hoyer will need to ask himself in the coming days is are the Cubs a World Series contender? The answer to that question is no. Having said that, there is a path to where the Cubs can trade Stroman but still be in a position to contend for the remainder of this season.

Decision day is looming for Hoyer and the Cubs' front office and the Giolito trade may have provided them with more incentive to trade Stroman.