With Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel already shipped out to Oakland, the Cubs seem to be turning to their bullpen to find their next trade chips. According to major league sources, left-handers James Russell and Wesley Wright are drawing significant trade interest in advance of the July 31 trade deadline.
Russell, who was rumored as a trade candidate this morning by Peter Gammons, has been of interest to teams since last summer and has been linked to the Nationals, Braves, Reds and Rangers in the past. The 28-year old has been excellent this season, posting a 2.22 ERA in 34 appearances following a 2013 season in which he posted a 3.59 mark in 74 games. He is under team control through next season, so he wouldn't be a rental for a team looking for bullpen help.
Wright, who was signed as a free agent last winter, has been equally as valuable, posting the same exact 2.22 ERA as Russell in 31 games. The 29-year old was traded from the Astros to the Rays in an August deal last summer, and appears to be a candidate to be moved once again. Like Russell, he is under team control through next season.