As we approach the MLB trade deadline, teams are putting themselves in position to be either buyers or sellers. As the year is beginning to take shape, it is looking as though it will be a seller’s market.
With no team head and shoulders above the rest, it allows for more teams to become buyers, thus making it a sellers market. With that being said, it makes the trade deadline ever the more interesting for the Chicago Cubs. The Cubs have two key pieces in which they will move fairly soon and they are starting pitchers Jason Hammel and Jeff Samardzija.
What the Cubs will get in return is unknown, but a piece that could be on its way to Chicago is promising young starting pitcher, Kevin Gausman. Gausman is a minor league starting pitcher in the Baltimore Orioles organization. The 23-year-old was rated as the 23rd best prospect in all of baseball according to Keith Law. Along with being one of the best prospects in baseball, he is the highest rated prospect in the Orioles organization.
Gausman projects as the prototypical starting pitcher with the size to withstand the physical demands of the job. He is listed at 6-foot-4 and 185 pounds. Gausman made his major league debut on May 23rd, 2013 against the Toronto Blue Jays, a game in which he started and would take the loss.
His career numbers at the major league level are nothing to marvel at, but many observers feel he was rushed to the majors last season. In his career, Gausman is 6-6 with a 4.71 ERA. This year could be a great indicator that he was rushed as in his four starts at the major league level this year, Gausman has gone 3-1 with a 2.74 ERA. This is much better than the 3-5 and 5.66 ERA that Gausman posted in his first stint in the majors. Granted, most of these appearances were out of the bullpen, but still the numbers posted were nothing spectacular by Gausman.
Although Gausman has not been fantastic in the majors, this would be a huge improvement in the Cubs organization if they were able to get him in a trade. Of course, in order to garner Gausman in a trade, it would most likely have to be a trade involving Samardzija. Samardzija is the type of player that will get the Cubs top notch talent in return, such as Gausman.
If the Cubs were able to get Gausman in a deal for Samardzija it will be a win for the organization. It will allow for the Cubs to have a top pitching prospect that profiles as a number 1 or 2 starter. The Cubs have a great number of hitting prospects, but aside from C.J. Edwards, the pitching in the farm system is very thin. Gausman is the type of pitcher that will be the foundation of a starting rotation and become very successful once he is given the chance to stick in the majors.
Cubs fans should get used to the name Kevin Gausman, because if the Cubs are to trade Samardzija to the Orioles, Gausman will be on his way back to Chicago.