[Update] Bruce Miles confirms that Fernando Perez is the outfielder the Rays are sending to the Cubs.

[Update] Bruce Levine is now reporting that the deal is done pending physicals. Levine confirms the five players listed below from the Cubs. He adds that the Cubs will receive a minor league pitcher and a minor leageu outfielder from the Rays.

[Update] There are several reports that the deal is now final and that the Rays are getting five players, with the deal including Sam Fuld in addition to the four prospects mentioned below. Also, the Rays will be sending two prospects to the Cubs. No word yet on who that is. Fuld is a 29-year old outfielder with 98 games at the big league level over parts of two seasons.

[11:32am]ruce Miles of the Chciago Herald-Tribune has multiple sources telling him that the Rays and Cubs are nearing a trade that would send Matt Garza to the Cubs, possibly for four prospects.

Would you give up Chris Archer, Hak-Ju Lee, Brandon Guyer and Robinson Chirinos to get Matt Garza. The Cubs are getting set to do just that, I’ve learned this morning. An announcement is not imminent for several reasons (physical exams, for one), but that is the package (based on several conversations with reliable sources I’ve had last night and early this morning)

Miles goes on to add that both sides may need to add some pieces to get the deal finalized. But the feeling appears to be that the main compenents of the deal are in place.

Bruce Levine of ESPN Chicago is also reporting that the two sides are close to finalizing the deal.

We had heard previously that Robinson Chirinos and Hak-Ju Lee (check those links for brief descriptions) would be part of any package. This is the first time we have heard Chris Archer and Brandon Guyer included.

Archer was a 5th round pick in 2006 by the Indians. He is a right-handed pitcher that made 27 starts between high-A and double-A last year.  He had 149 strikeouts in 142.1 innings with a 2.34 ERA (3.13 FIP).

Guyer, a 5th round pick in 2007, is a right-handed hitting outfielder that played 102 games in double-A a year ago. He hit .344 with a .398 OBP, 13 home runs, 30 stolen bases and an amazing .452 wOBA.



  1. smac says:

    Lets totally write off 2011.

  2. Charles says:

    Archer is a 21 year old currently in AA, seems to be a starter with decent stuff and control issues. He had a decent WHIP last year despite the fact that he walked 5 guys per 9 innings. Seems like he could be a good back end starter if he figures that stuff out. He’ll probably start out in AA again this season.

    Guyer is an outfielder with speed and some flashes of power. He hit .344 in AA last year with a near .400 OBP, but it doesn’t look like he’s consistently put together that kind of season in consecutive years. He’s also turns 25 this month, so it seems like he needs to show something pretty soon. I’d guess based on last year he’d start at Durham.

  3. Charles says:

    I should also add that Guyer was the Cubs’ 2010 Minor League Player of the Year.

  4. smac says:

    Another bunch of AA players to add to our already large collection of minor league talent. Archer has promise but Guyer will be a career minor leaguer. We should be getting Brett Jackson and Archer for Garza.

  5. Gus says:

    Not enough. Total rebuilding move.

    Seems the Rays go to great lengths to discourage their fanbase. I’m sure DRays Bay will find the proverbial pony in the dung pile, but I don’t see it. Guy throws a no-hitter, pitches lights out on the road in Texas and is shipped for prospects.

    “Tampa Bay Rays baseball: Where tomorrow is always around the corner.”

    • SeanDubbs says:

      Never mind the AL Pennant and two AL East Championships. Jeremy Hellickson step’s into the rotation now and is just as good as Garza.

      I don’t understand why everyone forgets the business aspects of baseball. We are not the Yankees, Red Sox, Dodgers, or Cubs. We don’t have a fan base any where near what those clubs have nor will we ever. This is who the Rays are. This is what the Rays have to be. This is what must be done to balance the immediate competitiveness and the future competitiveness of the franchise and this is what the Rays do better than anyone else.

      • Danny says:

        Sean – you’re on target here – deals like this have to be done due to the market we play in – we can’t afford to pay the money that larger market teams do and in turn we have to trade these players when their value is the highest

        As for a later comment referencing Shields, yeah, it’d be great if we traded him, but noone is going to give us half what we just got for Garza – it takes two parties to make a good trade and unfortunately Shields’ value isn’t that high right now. Hopefully he’ll have a bounce back in 2011 so that we can get something for him.

        To me, trades like this and having a small budget are reasons to like this team even more. It’s much more exciting to root for a team that’s craftily put together on a budget as opposed to Boston and New York where talent evaluation doesn’t matter – just the size of your checkbook.

        GO RAYS!!!!! and thanks to Matty G for Game 7 against the Sucks in 08!!!

      • Sean, but you had a chance to have one season with both pitchers and you’re celebrating not having that season.

  6. smac says:

    I have to agree 100% with you Gus. If your going to trade any of your pitchers trade Shields! Before he loses whatever value he may still have left on the open market.

  7. Perry says:

    I like this deal! We can afford to lose Garza with Hellboy in the wings and we build for the future. Even the near future. From what I read, I might do the deal for Robinson Chirinos alone. We need the catcher with a serious bat going forward.

    • Bill says:

      OK, the deal is not that bad but trading Garza for a 27 yr
      old catcher alone? No offense Perry but you must be out of your
      mind! Archer was ranked #1 in the cubs organization by baseball
      america, and guyer shows decent promise, but I would really like

      • John S says:

        What does number 1 have to do with anything. The Cubs have one of the worst 5 systems in baseball.

        Its like saying the Reds, the reigning NL central champ, can compete in the AL East. They would be battling the Blue Jays for 4th.

        I do not like this trade. Not enough quality, too much quantity.
        Guyer is a 25 and in AA. Cashner is a going to a reliever. Lee is legit but we have SS/2B on lockdown for the next 5 years. Lee will probably start triple AAA. Guld.. well is useless, triple AAA or MLB depth chart.

        For our number 2 pitcher and the one pitcher besides Price that I want pitching in a big game. This is another bad decision by Andrew right now.

        BUT it is only fair to judge this trade.. 3 years from now.

        • Derek says:

          The system as a whole should not reflect on one guy. Its a decent enough deal, and Archer might not be the number one in the Rays system, but he is top 5. Thats saying a lot with Moore, Hell, and Jennings. Its who Joe and Andrew want pitching in a big game, not you. Davis did pretty well in his game four start. Im sure Hellboy will be able to handle the “pressure” as well. That catcher could, and will see time next year. That SS is said to be a defensive wiz. We didnt “need” Garza to win games, but his 5+ million he would have made helps us find some guys we do need.

        • Matt says:

          Cubs system is #15 and Lee and Archer are top prospects
          from the cubs if you check out Bleedcubbieblue.com cubs fan feel
          like they gave up to much

  8. smac says:

    No way…none of these prospects are anything special. Baseball Prospectus rates none of these guys as anything more than B level major league prospects. All are at least 2 – 3 years away from a major league roster. I dont see Hellickson just sliding into the #2 slot in the rotation so soon. Its going to leave a big hole in the rotation after Price. and that was the only strength this team has right now.

    • SeanDubbs says:

      “Grade B prospects have a good chance to enjoy successful careers. Some will develop into stars, some will not. Most end up spending several years in the majors, at the very least in a marginal role.”

      • smac says:

        Agree…but if your going to trade one of the better pitchers in the AL last season you should at the very least expect ONE ELITE level prospect in return. This is just a pure fire sale. as they dont want to pay his arbitration salary this season.

        • SeanDubbs says:

          We can go back and forth on whether this is a good or bad trade but neither of us will know who’s right and by the time we find out we’ll have forgotten this conversation.

          We are getting 4 of the top 10-15 prospects in their system including (in some rankings which can never be 100% correct) the top overall prospect in Archer. Also word is that the deal is now 8 players with the Rays getting Sam Fuld and the Cubs getting two minor leaguers.

          If we take the $6 Million that we are not paying Garza and use it to fill the DH, 1B, or reliever needs that we have then this deal looks even better.

          • smac says:

            The Cubs have a low rated farm system. So grabbing 4 of their top 15 isnt anything to write home about. No elite prospects…so lets load up on a bunch of these guys and hope someone makes it to the majors eventually.

            Lets see if they take this 6 million and turn it into a DH, 1B or reliever. They cant/wont afford Thome….that pretty much leaves Manny or Vlad or Damon. Or maybe Fuentes on the bullpen side. Pickings are getting pretty slim.

          • Gus says:

            That’s the problem: The $6M saved is going into Stu Jr.’s college fund and the Rays will have the lowest flipping payroll in the league despite drawing 2.0M last season. A complete outrage. We got a bunch of quantity questions who work cheap back for a great arm. Ridiculously stupid if you have any respect for your 2011 season ticket holders.

        • Derek says:

          One of the best in the AL? He wasnt even one of the best in the AL East

    • Derek says:

      Everything on the internet is a lie, that goes for BA too.

  9. Derek says:

    What does this mean for BECKHAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    solid trade. Id like for that Garza salary to be deposited into mannys account now please, thanks.

    Who has the better year next year? Garza or Davis? Its going to be close.

    • John S says:

      Who cares.. we are now hoping he just gets to the majors..

      Andrew is finally recoginizing his pathetic mistake that will forever mark his career… Beckman over Posey.

      Even more so than just letting Hamilton go.

      • Derek says:

        Im with you, I know you were screaming at your tv when that happened right? Im going to go with no, you probably didnt know who posey was. Anyways, Id rather not judge Becks yet. Also did Posey even go number 2? No, so its not like the Rays were the only club worried about his money demands…. just for reference, Evan was third over-all, and Lincecum was tenth. Do you know who Luke hochevar is? He went first overall in 2006. Went 7-13 in 2009, had an era of 6.55. “the past is only the future with the lights on”

  10. SeanDubbs says:

    @smac I’ll agree 100% that none of these prospects are elite. I would say these guys provide depth rather than impact. However if just one of the four guys we get back turn out to be what they could be then we break even. If half then we come out ahead. It’s a gamble that Friedman has won more times than he’s lost. Delmon Young and Scott Kazmir come to mind.

    As for the $6 Million, I have no idea what they will do with that money. If they fill the immediate needs of the big league club then great. If they decide to use that cash towards the heap of early draft picks we have this year then I’m fine with that as well.

    As Danny said above, “Trades like this and having a small budget are reasons to like this team even more.” I could support the Yanks and Sox if I wanted to be flown to the top of the mountain instead of climbing it.

  11. phil says:

    I would agree that it is good move if they spend some money on a reliever and a bat or too! Hello Fuentes and Thome!

  12. Charles says:

    I like this trade. Sure, Garza had solid years, but this is not Nolan Ryan or even Cliff Lee we’re talking about here. Garza was the 48th best pitcher in the AL last year by WAR. He was worth 0.2 wins more than #51, which happens to be Wade Davis.

    What we got back are pieces that help fill eventual positions of need, especially at catcher. The other pieces are nice too – like someone mentioned above, they’re grade B prospects, which translates into solid major leaguers. It’s a good deal too because it frees up a spot for Hellickson. Yeah, a Shields trade would have been more palatable, but it also wouldn’t have gotten this kind of return.

  13. Mike Miller says:

    Wouldn’t be surprised if Sonny is #5 until Late May before
    Hellboy comes up.

  14. Perry says:

    At least I won’t have to watch Garza spit five times before every pitch over and over…

  15. smac says:

    Who do you like that we received from the Cubs? Archer seems to be the only player that seems a sure bet for the major leagues.

  16. werD says:

    This trade works on so many different levels, and presents
    a solution to the biggest off-season question that I had (see #2).
    First, to all you cubs fans, have fun with Garza. you thot Zambrano
    was a hot head? pppfffftttttt… Second, we just to made room for
    Jeremy Hellickson in the rotation. Does he need to be a #2?
    absolutely NOT. what did Davis and Neimann do last year? nah, JH
    can be the #5 (or 4 if we move JN to the closer role), and we can
    move on down the road. Thirdly, that saves another $5MM+ to put
    towards future use. Lastly, we still have the leader of the
    rotation, Big Game James, (who will be traded before the trade
    deadline, imo.) so if thats the downside to this deal, then all
    that’s left is the upside of getting GREAT prospects from the Cubs.
    i like this deal alot, and still cant believe Friedman and co got
    someone to take Garza off their hands.

    • matt says:

      completely agree with you. Got some good prospects, saved some money, and made room for hellboy, good job friedman

    • Frank says:

      dont drink and post.. thot? you really are an ass. great prospects ? learn to read. Front line starter Shields?? Get help.. and I am not opposed to the deal.. just you..

      • Derek says:

        Whats wrong with the prospects?? A pitcher with top of the rotation stuff, the best defensive ss in his league last year. A solid defensive catcher (which we dont have, and he should see time this year) Guyer is a toss up in every way possible. lol, but this is a very decent return for Delmon Young, I mean Matt Garza and Jason Bartlett, I mean Matt Garza.

  17. phil says:

    How about using the money available before the trade and the savings from the trade and bring in some relievers and dh/1st?

  18. smac says:

    A 27 year old catcher with 15 games at AAA level….he may get a shot at being a backup catcher. He certainly cant perform ANY WORSE than Shoppach

  19. phil says:

    catchers take longer to develop?

  20. phil says:

    hey Cork – how much of the $38.1M payroll has dropped because ot the graza trade?

  21. John says:

    I like the deal.

  22. phil says:

    Jon Rauch is still a free agent ..can close until Mcgee is ready to ….

    Russell Branyan/johnny damon and Jim thome! Barnyon can play first not sure if he is good defensively?

  23. Tone says:

    I hate this. They could have waited till July or next offseason. The return does not impress me and we still don’t know what minor league pitcher they are sending with Perez. There is also a player to be named later for the Bartlett deal. This all looks like a plain old firesale. How are they helping ticket sales with this offseason? They complain about ticket sales ALL the time and then just dismantle the team as a punishment. Fuck them and fuck baseball.

    • Frank says:

      best post on this page.. How does this help?? I love prospects but .. really .. Shields sucks and Garza is good..$$$$$$$$$. OKAY ..

      • smac says:

        Exactly …. the Rays have 10,000 prospects. We need front line players on this team. I just want to know who will hit the ball this year!? And who is going to pitch from the 6th inning on.

        • Derek says:

          All you guys do is cry cry cry, why watch the team if you dont like how its run? For real, why? It cant be to see them win, because thats all they have done, yet still. Cry cry cry. I know you dont watch to see what smart move they make next, because when they make one. Its cry cry cry. Has Andrew done anything to prove that he wont do everything possible to put a team of winners on the field. No, but still, Its cry cry cry. Man up, its just baseball.

          • smac says:

            Keep on your rose colored glasses. This is nothing more than what the Marlins have been doing for years. Fire sale every couple of years. Always fielding decent teams with great prospects in the system. Occasionally get a couple lucky years in a row like the Rays have just done then settle into mediocrity. The AL East has gotten much better this year. There is not hitting on this team and no bullpen. Be prepared.

          • Tone says:

            You are a tool.

          • Derek says:

            Put away your crystal ball. You have no idea who we trade for today or sign tomorrow. Untill they can afford to pay an average pitcher 6 million, they wont. Did you not watch him last year? How was he any less up and down then Shields? Didnt he give up like four Hrs in a row? Then throw a no-hitter. Garza has been getting worse every year. His ground ball percent has dropped every year. In 08 it was 41.7%, 09 was 39.7 and last year: 35.8. While his flyball percent has gone from 39-44 in the time frame. soooo less balls on the ground, more in the air. He doesnt really strike out a lot of guys either. My point is, Garza was worth more yesterday, than he will be a year from now.

          • Derek says:

            Plus, how is it a fire sale? Did you really think we would have been able to keep any of Crawford/Sori/Pena? Benoit wasnt worth what he got, we traded a SS that is worthless against RHP, and a SP who was at peak value. This team makes moves like this every year, and every year we win games. Maybe its about time to trust the scouts who tell Andrew that he needs to get this SS who will be a stud, or this pitcher that has gotten better the last few years. (not worse)

    • Derek says:

      You dont know what you get at the deadline. Another average year for him, and you get less than you get now. What doesnt impress you about these guys? please please explain with your vast knowledge of prospects. They are helping ticket sales by winning the AL East. The question is, how are you helping? They have built a winning team three years in a row now, its your turn to do something. The guy we give is going to be an average pitcher, who would have never seen time in Tampa anyways. This frees a spot for hellboy, and six million. That looks like two ways they make the team better.

    • phil says:

      send me your id and password so i can read the article.. or at least paste the content to read what did law say about Chirinos?

  24. a.j. says:

    I’m sad to see Garza go…he was a great #2 for us. I wish him the best in his future! Yesterday, I didn’t like the deal at first. But after researching, it looks like very good return! Chirinos could possibly be up after the allstar break, is a great hitter that rarely K’s, and a solid defender according to our Double-A manager. Archer looks to be a great pitcher that misses a lot of bats but walks a few too many…sounds like a future setup/closer! Lee is a defensive wizard that will have no power but hit for a high AVG, and get on base a lot, and maybe steal around 25-30 bases…reminds me of Bartlett! Guyer looks to have possibly had a breakout year. I don’t care what anybody says…if you hit .344 in any league, you’re good. He could be the RF in waiting if Joyce flops (which I’m certainly not hoping for). Fuld gives us a great defensive 5th outfielder that has plenty of highlight catches in his brief career, and will hit around .250-.270 in around 200 AB’s…I’ll take that from my 5th OF any day! I think Fuld means the end for Ruggiano, personally. He just has better experience, and teams will always try to prove a trade right.

    • Derek says:

      Flud is Perez. Just seems like the Cubs wanted to show their fans they got a few guys too. Archer has the stuff to be better than Garza was. So I doubt we put him in the bullpen. Lee is said to already be a gold glove SS, Barlett is one of the worst. Other than that, at least you agree with this trade. Im glad someone understands

  25. a.j. says:

    I hear u Derek! Seems like everyone wants to complain about everything here. I believe Friedman really wanted to move Shields, but didn’t get any offers that were intriguing enough. This looks like a move that puts us in contention in 2012 and all the way thru 2015 or longer. And I still think we could possibly sign Fuentes and maybe Vlad, and still have a very good team this year! So what’s the problem everyone is having? The offseason isn’t over yet!

    • Derek says:

      Right, trading shields doesnt free up six mill either. Shields has declined just like Garza, but he still has better ground ball rates, and lower flyball rates. He just had a HUGE increase in HR/FB. These two could be the same guy next year, ill take the cheap one.

    • Jason W says:

      I doubt they were trying to trade Shields, Maddon Loves him. TO tell the truth I wouldnt be suprised if Sheilds is in the #1 rotation spot over Price. He will at least be in the 2 spot. I dont know if I disagree with that or not. Just watching him this year he looked horrible, but going to sabermetric sites like Drays, it shows he was actually very good. They think he was unlucky wth the HRs. If he can rebound and give us something like 08, that would be great. And Shields wouldn’t have brought as great as a return or as good of salary relief that Garza brought.

  26. smac says:

    IF he makes the majors he will be no more than a career backup catcher and defensive replacement.

  27. a.j. says:

    I love how some of you guys like to write people off before you’ve ever seen them play! Whose to say Chirinos isn’t an allstar? In the next 3 years? Or Guyer hits 25+ HR while hitting .320 in the bugs? The truth is nobody knows!!! Nobody really expected Jaso to do what he did last year, or Zobrist the year before! All I know is our scouting department might be the best in the game…so I trust them. They haven’t given me any reason not to. So I think we got a very good return!

    • Tone says:

      And people like you do the same thing by liking this trade. Garza was a very good pitcher and was well worth 6million. How do you know any of these kids will be worth anything? You don’t. So you are optimistic and some us of are not. You were probably on the Pat Burrell bandwagon 2 years ago. I hated that, Percival, and the Shoppach deals. I was not too keen on the Delmon Young trade at first but never felt this strongly against it like I do for this deal. They had little to lose back then. They just won the AL east and follow it with a massive rebuild. This team needed a few tweaks, not a massive overhaul. Shields should have been traded. So admit your a tool, your shit stinks too.

      • Derek says:

        He is worth six million to other teams, not one that cant afford it. Id rather have Hellboy in the rotation, and use the Garza money for a bat/bullpen help. Shields doesnt get us anything for this year. Garza gets us 6 million, and a catcher who could be better than Shop, and can fill in at 2nd or SS. What made Garza good last year? One no hitter? You take chances on prospects because you have to. Everyone on our team was a prospect once, several were top prospects, just like Archer and Lee.

      • a.j. says:

        Very intelligent argument from a tool shed! You’re right though…why be optimistic? I should probably root for my favorite team to lose huh? You’re a jackass for not believing in what your team can do…if your gonna get into personal attacks then two can play that game you idiot!

  28. Don says:

    First of all, forget about the Rays signing a big bat for $5mil +/- ……NOW ….because they have the money…they are not going to spend money, A fire sale item around $1 mil maybe…

    Also, come on you crybabies I want to hear it for a “Thank You Ad” from Garza, to show his appreciation for all you fans have done for him,
    and also a blip from Friedman/Stuie how happy they were to give Garza the “opportunity” to become successful….. would be nice….
    Come on Cork you can lead the charge for another “full page ad” (not 1/2), just so you will feel appreciated! Don’t you just love it!

  29. smac says:

    regardless of whether you like this trade or not our pitching will be fine with the exception of a reliable closer. My question is WHO is going to hit for this team? We have only one reliable / proven year in and year out major league hitter on this team.

    • Derek says:

      Id agree, but it was assumed we could pay a dh before this trade. BJ, Joyce, and Zo need to do what they are capable of doing.

  30. smac says:

    I cannot see the Rays paying for a Thome, Damon or Manny. they will be looking at scrap heap players like Branyon or someone of that caliber. I dont have any faith in BJ turning it around…he has looked lost at the plate for 2 years. Maybe Joyce might be a decent hitter if Maddon would play him against both righties and lefties. Dont know what to make of Zo…was 2009 a fluke or was 2010 what we can expect. In any case nobody but Longo scares other teams.

  31. Jared says:

    Thanks for re-posting this story. These comments are HILLARIOUS!!!! when you read them a year later.

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