The Cubs traded three of their top ten prospects today in a deal for Rays ace Matt Garza, according to ESPN.com. The Cubs sent their minors pitcher of the year Chris Archer and minors hitter of the year Brandon Guyer, along with Korean phenom Hak-ju Lee, catcher Robinson Chirinos, a defensive specialist, and outfielder Sam Fuld for Garza and outfielder Fernando Perez and another minor leaguer.
All the minor leaguers, besides Fuld who is 27, are projected around the league to serviceable major leaguers. Of them all, Archer is projected as a 1-2 starter in the major leagues. He brings the heat and has advanced secondary pitches. Cubs VP of Player Personell Oneri Fleita said in an interview with MLBDD that,
"Chris Archer has big time stuff, and finding someone who can [potentially] give you 200-plus innings is hard to find. We think he has the ability to do it."
Since becoming a full time starter in 2008, Garza has combined to go 34-31 in 95 starts. He is workhorse and his ERA has consistently stayed under 4.00, in the AL East. His strikeout-to-walk ratio has also improved over the past three years, and if that can continue, playing in the NL Central should be a lot easier for him.
Only time will tell for who wins this trade. It is obvious the Cubs are still operating under the win-now mentality. With high ticket prices, it is the only way to keep fans coming to the games. Waiting on prospects like Archer and Lee could pay huge dividends down the road, but Garza could do the same for the Cubs and they obviously feel he is more valuable than the prospects of Lee and Archer in a few years.
Can't blame 'em.