Report: Athletics Could Revisit Talks with Cubs about Luis Valbuena

According to a report from Ken Rosenthal, the Cubs discussions with the A’s in the trade that sent Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel to Oakland included Luis Valbuena at one point. And the two teams may revisit those discussions for Valbuena before the July 31 trade deadline.

Billy Beane is looking to add a second baseman to the A’s roster and Valbuena “could enter the mix at second base.” Rosenthal added part of Valbuena’s appeal is that he is under club control through the 2016 season.

Ken Rosenthal remained consistent in his reporting that the Cubs are reluctant to trade Luis Valbuena. Rosenthal reported in June the Cubs may not be inclined to trade Valbuena.

PrintLuis Valbuena has cooled off after a red hot May and early June. Valbuena hit .295/.389/.513 in 23 games in May with a .902 OPS. In June he finished with a .275/.320/.451 slash line and a .770 OPS. For the season, Valbuena is hitting .260/.344/.427 with 22 doubles, two triples, five home run s and a .771 OPS.

Luis Valbuena can play second, third and shortstop and would be good utility player on a winning team.

The Cubs value what Luis Valbuena provides them, according to Rosenthal, a left-handed bat with on base skills. Valbuena is making $1.71 million this season. And a correction on previous reports, Valbuena has two years of club control left on his contract.

James Russell and Wesley Wright

The Cubs two lefty relievers are expected to be moved before the deadline and both names have been in the rumor mill for several weeks. The Blue Jays were thought to be interested in one of the southpaws and the Angels were connected to James Russell before Jerry Dipoto traded for lefty Joe Thatcher.

James Russell and Wesley Wright are under club control for the 2015 season. Russell is arbitration eligible for one more year after being paid $1.775 million this season. Wright is also arbitration eligible for one last time nest season. Wright is making $1.425 million this year.

Ken Rosenthal reported Tuesday the Cubs are receiving interest in James Russell and Wesley Wright but he did not mention which teams could be talking to the Cubs about the two southpaws.

As for other trade chips the Cubs have between now and the end of August, teams have shown interest in Darwin Barney, Justin Ruggiano and Carlos Villanueva.

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  • BosephHeyden

    My opinion is that you take what you can get for Valbuena. Yeah, he’s doing well now, but he didn’t exactly set the world on fire last year and could very well significantly regress sooner rather than later. Get what you can for him, and start transitioning Vitters into the backup corner infield/outfield guy.

    By the time they’ve moved past Barney, Baez should fill in nicely, and Watkins can backup in middle infield spots.

    • Vivid_Reality

      A’s still have lots of interesting pitchers. I wouldn’t hesitate moving Valbuena for any of Bobby Wahl, Dillon Overton, Raul Alcantara, Nolan Sandburn, or Chris Kohler. I’m still holding hope that Kohler will be the ptbnl in the Shark trade but it seems unlikely.

      • Craig York

        I got a hunch that it’s going to be Alcantara, or atleast he’s on the list.

    • Craig York

      I agree, they have plenty of infield depth upcoming, but you can always use that veteran presence who gets on base. I’d like to see them get a decent pitching prospect for him, but I expect them to keep him.

    • Theboardrider

      I wouldn’t trade him for just anyone. His OBP is well above average and GM’s put a high value in that. And he’s consistently had a good OBP so I don’t think we have to dump him before the ship springs leaks. His average is dropping and as Tex and Rip have predicted he appears to not be the hitter he was for the first 2 months. He may finish higher than ever but not great. If you can’t get a pretty decent player back hold on and trade him in offseason id think. Especially with his typical early season success a GM may prefer to get him in offseason an benefit from his hot start next year. Basically he may be a player that is more valued in offseason than deadline.

  • JasonOfTheBurbs

    I just don’t see you getting a good haul for Luis straight up…so don’t see the upside as his cheap cost, control, and flexibility is pretty valuable for a team that will continue to have kids learning-on-the-fly and/or questionable retreads comprising their lineups.

    I would just give the A’s Darwin Barney for free and say “thanks again for Russell”.

    • Theboardrider

      But Beane has shown that he’s “all-in,” this season and we all know he loves a high OBP. Valbuena is his type of guy. I think Beane might give us a decent young prospect. Especially if he would like a left handed reliever to accompany him.

      Just trying to put myself in Beane’s shoes based in the well known knowledge of him. And using his acquisition of Shark/Hammel as a indicator if where his priorities are. You never know, he may be considering a break/retirement in the next year ortwo and that is part of why he wants to go for it right now. He may not be real concerned with the state of the team and a pitching prospect that is 3 or 4 years away.

      • Theboardrider

        Take advantage of that.

  • Theboardrider

    I don’t see why Ruggiano wouldn’t be moved. I think if healthy his current play was somewhat projectable and you can predict him to finish with a decent average and occasional power. I predict he is traded.