According to a report from Bruce Levine, the Cubs and Jeff Samardzija have been discussing parameters on a long-term contract extension since last December.
Bruce Levine reported that “the conversations about an extension might not be a distraction but remain on his mind.”
Reports last off-season suggested that the Cubs discussed a five-year, $28 million extension with Jeff Samardzija but he ended those discussions because he wanted to have more of a gauge on where he stood as a big league starting pitcher. Samardzija put together a good first year as a starter before the Cubs shut him down in early September.
Jed Hoyer told Bruce Levine that Samardzija is a “guy we would love to try and build around.” The front office is very fond of everything Samardzija brings to the table and have shared their views about him publicly.
Hoyer recently said that locking up Samardzija long-term is one of the team’s priorities in the off-season. Hoyer would not discuss the details of the negotiations with Samardzija.
Jeff Samardzija told Bruce Levine, “I have been pretty good at blanking it out, to tell you the truth,” Samardzija said after a 3-0 loss to the Dodgers. “You try to go into each start with the least amount of distractions as possible. You try to clear your mind. The only thing you want in your head is the lineup you’re facing and game plan against them. It is not the easiest thing to do. To say it doesn’t weigh on you would be a lie. I am working on going start-to-start and get my mind ready to face the team I am facing. You prove yourself on the field and everything else takes care of itself.”
Jeff Samardzija is under the Cubs control for two more seasons and does not become a free agent until after the 2015 season.
Reports suggested last week that if the Cubs are unable to sign Samardzija to an extension, the front office will explore trading him.
Stay Tuned …