Two years ago it was Brian Roberts, last winter Jake Peavy. Will this off-season be filled with one Curtis Granderson rumor after the other? Outside of Milton Bradley, the Chicago native has made the most noise in Cubs’ circles since the rumor surfaced he could be available this winter.
At the forefront of the Curtis Granderson-to-the-Cubs rumor mill has been Phil Rogers … and the Tribune reporter tossed out two more trade scenarios Friday night that could have Granderson patrolling centerfield for Lou Piniella next season.
According to the report in the Tribune, if the Tigers make Curtis Granderson available then Jim Hendry and the Cubs would be “interested in offering a prospect-heavy package of players.”
“A Cubs offer could be built around 19-year old shortstop Starlin Castro, who is emerging as one of the top prospects in the minors. Third baseman Josh Vitters, 19 year-old Korean shortstop Hak-Ju Lee and minor-league pitching from a group including Andrew Cashner, Jay Jackson and Chris Carpenter also could be a part of the deal.”
A Cubs source suggested to Rogers that a package of “low priced veterans whom the Tigers could either keep or move elsewhere could be enough for Granderson. Rogers listed Jake Fox, Tom Gorzelanny, Micah Hoffpauir, Aaron Miles, Aaron Heilman and Mike Fontenot as players that could be included in a trade for Granderson.
Rogers stated the players mentioned with major league experience could either be kept in Detroit or traded elsewhere.
Phil Rogers indicated Jim Hendry and Dave Dombrowski “spoke about Granderson and other Tigers players during the GM meetings.”
The two “packages” Phil Rogers mentioned are from one end of the spectrum to the other. One would empty out a weak farm system that showed signs of improvement last season … and the other would be a case of trading quantity over quality.
So which one would it be? Maybe a combination of the two?
As Keith Law reported, if the Cubs trade for Curtis Granderson they might want to re-sign Reed Johnson. Granderson simply cannot hit lefties and should be platooned.
How could the Cubs, or any other team for that matter, trade their top prospects for a platoon player that is showing signs of not be worth his contract in a couple of years.
Keith Law clearly stated, “a team acquiring him needs to consider a right-handed hitting platoon mate, and be sure that they don’t overpay expecting him to be an every-day guy.”
Buster Olney talked about Granderson in his blog Friday. Most of the report is by subscription only and cannot be published but Olney brought up several good points.
His OPS dropped 78 points last year and has fallen around 133 points since 2007. Olney said Jim Leyland did not play Granderson early in his career against lefties but has in recent years and the weakness has been exposed. Olney spoke with one evaluator that said Granderson is “basically an out” when facing left-handed pitching.
Olney finished with an important statement about Granderson. “It’s unlikely that anybody is going to hand over a couple of big-time prospects for him because of his lefty-righty splits.”
Lynn Henning of the Detroit News mentioned a possible package from the Cubs that included Starlin Castro, Josh Vitters and Andrew Cashner … and if the Cubs would not do that package, they should hand over Carlos Marmol.
While fans have a tendency to over-value players on their favorite team, beat writers can be guilty of the same from time to time.
Jim Callis from Baseball America told Phil Rogers he thinks the Cubs have enough to land Granderson … and it could take a package that included Starlin Castro or Hak-Ju Lee, Josh Vitters and one of Andrew Cashner, Jay Jackson or Chris Carpenter.
Somewhere between Phil Rogers and Lynn Henning is a package the Cubs could offer Detroit for Curtis Granderson … it just depends on how much Jim Hendry is willing to “pay” for an above average defender that can hit right-handed pitching very well.
Stay Tuned …