Now this is pure speculation on my part. With the rumors and talks between clubs being shut down until the new year I decided to look at the best pitcher available and see if the Cubs could land him.
Let me first say there is about a 1% chance the Cubs trade for him. He would cost a lot of good prospects and the Cubs probably don't have enough to get him. But here is what I came up with.
The Yankees and Red Sox have made strong offers to the Twins but they are wanting a lot more than they can offer. The Yankees are getting frustrated and have dropped out of the running at least twice. They don't see a deal taking shape at all and refuse to give up Ian Kennedy in a deal that would likely include Hughes, Cabrera, and many more good prospects. The Red Sox have offered up the best deal for Santana but the Twins still don't seem interested. I personally thing the Sox are just trying to block the deal from the Yankees and there doing a great job.
Its safe to say the the Twins really don't mind going into next season with Santana and maybe dealing him at the deadline. The problem with that is if they don't make a deal or Santana decides to not waive him no trade clause then they will likely lose him next year and only get draft picks for him. That's a risk I don't think the Twins want to take.
What if the Cubs jump in the mix??? It would be great if they could pull a deal like what the Tigers did with Florida. The Tigers were not even on the radar when the Miguel Cabrera talks were going on. They swept in a left the Angels, Dodgers, and many other teams in the dust. I think the Cubs have a small chance of doing that. While the Yankees and Sox fight over who is gonna give up the most without hurting the club the most, the Cubs come in and strike a deal with the Twins leaving the Yankees and Red Sox stunned. That would be a great off-season move by Hendry although not likely. Another thing besides maybe not having the prospects to make a deal is the 36 hour time window that is rumored that the team has to negotiate and long term deal with Santana. So even if you agree on the players the deal can be squashed by not signing him to a long tern deal. Not to mention he is looking at 7 years 140 million which means he would likely get 6 years 110-120 million. That is more than we signed Zambrano to and might disrupt the club a bit. Even though by signing him for 6 years would almost insure the Cubs making the playoffs every year for at least the next 4 years. Everyone knows the Cubs Organization biggest concern is to win a World Series so I don't see money or players stopping them from getting Santana.
So after all this speculation and ideas on how the Cubs could get Santana, do I think it will happen?? Very Unlikely! But do I think this sounds like something Jim would try to pull off?? Absolutely!
For those interested on what I would offer the Twins for Santana, here you go!
Hill- A young lefty that would immediately be in the starting rotation next year as a potential #2 or #3 starter. In a couple of years he will be a legitimate #1.
Pie- The Twins need more young outfielders and a replacement in for Hunter in CF. Pie could fill that void nicely. He has dominated in AAA and has struggled batting in the Major Leagues. One thing is the Cubs have no complaints on this D, he would develop well with the Twins.
Gallagher- A young righty with good stuff! He could be easily slotted in the #5 spot in a rebuilding team. He is young and has tremendous upside. A guy that the Twins would fall in love with.
Sean Marshall- He proves he belongs in ML. He is a steady lefty who has good stuff but can be inconsistent at times. He is a good number 4 or 5 pitcher right now. With some experience under his belt he could be a good number 3. He would round out the Twins rotation well!
Epatt- Could be inserted as a 2b or OF. Hit well in AAA has some discipline problems and would need to develop more in AAA.
Veal- The Cubs best lefty prospect. Has stuff comparable to Willis yet he needs more time to develop in AAA.
Vitters- Vitters was the Cubs top pick in the the draft this year. He is slotted as a 3rd baseman but he can play other positions. The Twins have a constant whole a 3rd base and sign cheap mediocre players to fill the void until someone proves they can fill it. It think Vitters could be the Twins everyday 3rd baseman in the next 2 years and do the job nicely!
The only player I would not give up( besides our blue chippers like Z, Lee, Sori, Aram etc) would be Marmol! I think he is the next great closer!
Do you have a deal that you think would get Santana??
Drop me a comment!