12/19 Cubs talking to Jackson, Villanueva

The Cubs aren’t finished shopping for pitching, and are reportedly pursuing free agents Edwin Jackson and Carlos Villanueva. The Cubs lost out in their bid for Anibal Sanchez, who rejected a five year, $77 million offer and signed with the Tigers for $80 million. Now Chicago is apparently taking aim at Jackson, 29, who was reportedly seeking a three- to four-year contract after making $11 million last season with the Nationals. The Padres were among the teams believed to be in the mix for Jackson, but there were reports Wednesday that they would not offer more than a three-year deal. Jackson went 10-11 last season and compiled a 4.03 ERA in 31 starts. In his career, he’s 14-9 with a 3.95 ERA in 38 games (36 starts) against the National League Central.

The Cubs already have added free agent pitchers Scott Feldman and Scott Baker, signing both to one-year contracts. But the team wants more depth, especially if Baker and Matt Garza are not ready. Baker is coming back from Tommy John surgery and Garza has just started throwing for the first time since July 21. He was shut down then because of a right elbow injury.

On Wednesday, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com and MLB Network reported that the Cubs had signed Villanueva. However, a source told MLB.com that the two sides were still finalizing details and no deal was done. Villanueva, 29, made 16 starts and 22 relief appearances last season for the Blue Jays, compiling a 4.16 ERA over 125 1/3 innings.
The right-hander, who made $2.2775 million in 2012, has pitched for the Brewers and Blue Jays, making 29 starts in the last two seasons with Toronto. In his career as a starter, he is 16-22 with a 4.80 ERA in 56 games.

– Carrie Muskat

9 Comments

Pingback: Cubs Closing in on Deal with Carlos Villanueva, Still Pursuing Edwin Jackson | Bleacher Nation | Chicago Cubs News, Rumors, and Commentary

Signing TWO more proven Major League starters is KEY to the remaining off season for the Cubs.

Not just because it assures that the Cubs will have a better than average rotation, but because it will make Garza available as soon as a list of teams are each satisfied, to their own standards of risk, that he will be ready for the season. It’s “key” because Garza will bring back another core piece of the future for the Cubs. Pieces like 3bmen Olt, Chisenhall, or a ready leadoff center fielder would give teams with interest in Garza a “leg up” on the competition. Teams like the Rangers and Indians lead the list, although with a pitcher of the quality of Garza, there will certainly be others,

The Cubs could actually come out of this winter with a competitive team ready to “grow” into contention.

Has Garza solved his issue with making simple tosses to first base? If not, that alone makes him a liability.

I am also very concerned if Garza has conquered his Yips on his throws to 1st…

No question 10 Errors in his 49 Cub Game Starts is a Record and such a Game Downer when it occurs….

He wins 18-20 games and nobody will care about his errant throws….
Castro is error prone and the Cubs signed him long term. It’s a goofy baseball world out there
when mediocre players get such lucrative contracts/money not to mention the Soriano’s of the world getting insane “Hendry” type of money. Garza is not a problem, if he stays he’ll pitch well to very well and have his errors just as Castro will hit well to very well but have HIS errors, so they are both “acceptable”. If Garza goes in a trade it won’t be a huge loss so Garza is the least of our worries.

18-20 Wins in 2013? LOL…

Right, I’m not saying he will nor do I think he will be a Cub for all of 2013, I am saying that too much is said about his mental lapses while throwing to first base….his errors won’t matter if he pitches like an ace (won’t) or is traded (will).

According to MLB Trade Rumors, Cubs just signed Jackson….so long Garza???

I only say “so long” Garza not because I want him traded but because all the talk latley seems to point in the direction that Hoystein wants to trade him. I’m perfectly content and confident that Garza can be a good pitcher on THIS staff, possibly the ace on THIS staff at least as good as Jackson, or anybody on the roster as of yet. It seems that he will be traded at the deadline however, that’s what I mean. Enjoy Gino’s!!!

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