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Cubs Rumors: Ryan Dempster, Matt Garza, Paul Maholm

July 24, 2012; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Paul Maholm (28) pitches against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the fourth inning at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE
July 24, 2012; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Paul Maholm (28) pitches against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the fourth inning at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE

With the Chicago Cubs efforts to trade right-hander Ryan Dempster at a standstill and Matt Garza’s recent injury concerns, Buster Olney of ESPN reports the club’s most marketable pitcher may wind up being left-hander Paul Maholm:

The Cubs' efforts to trade Ryan Dempsterare being stifled, and Matt Garza's injury may wreck Chicago's efforts to trade the AL East veteran. So it may turn out to be that Paul Maholm is the most marketable Cub pitcher. He doesn't have any no-trade protection, he's got a team-friendly $6.5 million option for next season, and he's throwing really well; Maholm has allowed four earned runs in his last 38.1 innings.

The Cubs are continuing to discuss Dempster with several teams, including the Atlanta Braves and Los Angeles Dodgers, but the veteran owns 10/5 rights which allow him to veto any trade. He reportedly prefers the West Coast, but the Braves were the team initially offering the Cubs the more-favorable package.

Garza’s injury doesn’t seem serious, but it could cause his value to drop to the point the Cubs don’t believe it’s worth trading him this summer.

Meanwhile, Maholm has been spectacular for Chicago this month, posting a 1.20 ERA in July. The 30-year-old is making $4.75 million this year and his contract includes a $6.5 million team option for the 2013 season.

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Which Cubs pitchers will/should get traded Garza/Dempster/Maholm?

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