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  1. #1
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    Cubs interested in Josh Johnson?

    The Chicago Cubs could add some big-name pitchers with big pay days still ahead of them.


    Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein told beat reporters that the Cubs will add starting pitching to the mix in their pursuit to improve on a 101-loss season. The Miami Marlins are hoping to dump some of their high salary pitching contracts as part of their new approach going forward, according to major league sources.

    Sources indicate that pitchers Josh Johnson and Mark Buehrle are on the trading block this offseason. Johnson's contract appears to fit into the Cubs' short-term plans. The 28-year-old pitcher has one year remaining on a long-term contract at $ 13.750 million for 2013. The Marlins will look for younger prospects and as much payroll relief they can get in each deal they make.

    The Cubs have $50 million coming off their 2012 payroll commitments. It appears they will be willing to add contracts such as Johnson's due to the flexibility of his current status. He will be eligible for free agency after 2013.

    Epstein and GM Jed Hoyer are looking for quality pitchers that they can either sign to long-term deals or flip before the July 31 trading deadline for other potential pitching prospects.

    The sources indicated that the Marlins would approach the Cubs and other teams with the payroll flexibility to take on most of the money owed on the contracts for Buehrle and Johnson.

    Johnson was 8-14 with a 3.81 ERA in 2012. The 6-foot-7 pitcher has a 56-37 lifetime record with a 3.15 ERA with the Marlins. His best season was 2009 when he went 15-5 with a 3.23 ERA in 33 starts.

    Buehrle's contract is much more problematic than Johnson's. The former White Sox star has a back-loaded deal that pays him $11 million in 2013, $18 million in 2014 and $19 million in 2015. Buehrle will be 34 in March.
    http://espn.go.com/blog/chicago/cubs...medium=twitter

    Chicago Bears #23
    Kyle "Cheetah" Fuller

  2. #2
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    Not his biggest fan, but yes please. Big bodied power rotation arms are always welcome.

    What would it cost? What if they also tried to squeeze Logan Morrison out of it? I'd like to land Morrison most amongst realistic and quasi-realistic Marlins.

  3. #3
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    I love the idea but I'm just not sure I'd be willing to give up the prospects and the big contract with his injury history.

  4. #4
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    I don't see the need to extend him. Flip him...If he's fixed up a bigger contender out there will definitely be interested.

    Former Marlins pitchers are weird. Beckett, Pavano, Burnett, Penny, Volstad....None of these guys ever fully lived up to the hype.

  5. #5
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    This is probably a dumb question, but how is his best season for ERA (3.23) higher than his career ERA (3.15)? I'm not trying to point to ERA for justification I just don't understand the math there.

  6. #6
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    So they're going to give up a big package of prospects only to turn around and flip him at the deadline? What if he gets injured before deadline like Garza? I'd rather just trade for him and sign him to extension.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by gocubs2118 View Post
    I love the idea but I'm just not sure I'd be willing to give up the prospects and the big contract with his injury history.
    Presumably, the more money we take on, the lesser the prospects we'll give up.

    And it's the last year of his contract, so it's not like it's a huge commitment.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Milnertime View Post
    Presumably, the more money we take on, the lesser the prospects we'll give up.

    And it's the last year of his contract, so it's not like it's a huge commitment.
    That's true but it's still not going to be chump change.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by gocubs2118 View Post
    So they're going to give up a big package of prospects only to turn around and flip him at the deadline? What if he gets injured before deadline like Garza? I'd rather just trade for him and sign him to extension.
    Wouldn't him getting injured before the deadline be a deterrent in extending him as well? Tis the risk you run with pitchers. Personally, from my fan view I'd prefer to bet on him holding up and pitching strong for half a season. I would not let what happened with Garza factor into future decisions too much. Maybe they really like him, think he fits the long term, and do extend him, but flipping him is a legit possibility.

  10. #10
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    Love Josh Johnson, wish the dude could stay healthy for multiple seasons in a row. I'd def. take a look at him if it wasn't too steep.

  11. #11
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    count me in

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by gocubs2118 View Post
    That's true but it's still not going to be chump change.
    Look what they gave up Cabrera for.

    They're interested in losing payroll more than bringing in potential talent, IMO.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by SenorGato View Post
    Wouldn't him getting injured before the deadline be a deterrent in extending him as well? Tis the risk you run with pitchers. Personally, from my fan view I'd prefer to bet on him holding up and pitching strong for half a season. I would not let what happened with Garza factor into future decisions too much. Maybe they really like him, think he fits the long term, and do extend him, but flipping him is a legit possibility.
    Normally I wouldn't either but he has a history of injuries. He's had less than 15 starts 4 different times in his career. He's been better his last 4 years, so that makes me feel better about trading for him but he's still more of a risk than the normal starter, at least in my mind.

  14. #14
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    Absolutely yes. It's obvious they are more interested in payroll rather than prospects, as evidence by the subpar return of Hanley in terms of prospects. For one year of 13.75 mill, he's more than capable of outplaying even that salary. The most important aspect is that it is only one year, where we can reap the rewards of his value to our contention or ship him off come the 31st. Love it.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by gocubs2118 View Post
    Normally I wouldn't either but he has a history of injuries. He's had less than 15 starts 4 different times in his career. He's been better his last 4 years, so that makes me feel better about trading for him but he's still more of a risk than the normal starter, at least in my mind.
    Exactly why I'd bank on half a season vs. 4-5 years.

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