Ken Rosenthal's Latest- The Padres are targeting Matt Murton for left field, a notion that gels with Kevin Towers' stated quest to acquire a corner outfielder via trade. Plus, Towers gets along well with Cubs GM Jim Hendry. Not sure how the teams would match up, unless things expand to include Khalil Greene. The Cubs would have to be sure they don't need Murton for other deals or because of other deals though.
Rosenthal agrees with the recent rumor that the Orioles will decide whether to trade Erik Bedard and Brian Roberts by month's end. He notes that Cubs starter Jason Marquis actually does have trade value, and could be part of a package for Roberts. Other teams are interested in him too - go figure. Innings are innings I guess.
Now Marquis in a deal for Roberts and Bedard seems wise. I like that idea a lot instead of dealing Hill. If the Cubs can pull off a Greene for Murton and a couple of other players would be ideal. He would be sick in the lineup considering his splits. Away from Petco he hit .300!
UPDATE, 1-21-08 at 6:39pm: According to Bruce Miles of the Daily Herald, "informed insiders say no renewed talks are underway" for a Cubs/Orioles blockbuster. Miles does believe Hendry is shopping Murton and interested in Byrd.
Seems Bruce and Phil have different sources. Also it is rumored that the Padres are going strong for Matt Murton. I can see Murton going to either the Pads, Indians( who also have interest in him) and the Rangers ( would want him in the Marlon Byrd deal). I think the Cubs should just stick with Derosa at 2b unless they will trade Roberts without giving up Pie or Hill. If the Cubs decide they want to strengthen the middle infield, how about Peralta or Greene?? Trade Murton and other players( Gallagher, Marshall, Cedeno, etc) for an upgrade at SS. Peralta should would look great in the lineup!
FROM 1-21-08 at 3:09pm:
Phil Rogers of the Chicago Tribune insists that Orioles owner Peter Angelos did shoot down some kind of Erik Bedard/Brian Roberts to the Cubs blockbuster last week. Furthermore, Rogers' source says the talks are now back on.
Rogers speculates that "frustration and gamesmanship" might be why Lou Piniella and Jim Hendry recently denied the blockbuster rumor. Hendry was quoted as saying "that certainly hasn't been a path we've been on."
Rogers also has sources saying the Cubs may have to give up Matt Murton and one or two other players to get Marlon Byrd from Texas (perhaps Sean Gallagher). He speculates that a three-team deal with the Rangers and Orioles to net the Cubs Bedard, Roberts, and Byrd is a possibility. Felix Pie would have to be in that mix, and note that Roch Kubatko said yesterday that the Cubs "would be willing to part with Rich Hill" to get Bedard and Roberts.
Through all of this Rogers says it's a "very highly placed source" and that he trusts the source. It's hard for me to really evaluate this stuff until we get more clarity.
I can actually see the Cubs finally getting this done especially if Texas gets involved( maybe they can float some prospects so we don't have to give up Hill). I still don't think the Cubs should give up Hill in any deal. Bedard will be a free agent at the end of the season and its likely he will want a big payday which the Cubs may not give him. Plus Hill is close to being just as good or better than Bedard. I would be willing to give up Pie and Colvin in the deal but not Hill, unless we got Millwood along with Bedard, Roberts, and Byrd. Come on Jim don't trade Hill.