6/18 Samardzija talks ongoing

There are reports that Jeff Samardzija rejected an $85 million contract offer from the Cubs. However, Samardzija and the Cubs are keeping conversations open, and have not ended discussions.

Scouts have been following Samardzija closely this season, and the Blue Jays had two representatives in Miami Tuesday night for his last start.

How is he dealing with all the trade rumors and contract chatter?

“Numb would be a good word,” Samardzija said Tuesday. “I’m just out doing my job. I feel good. I’m really excited, compared to these last two years of starting, I feel really good where I’m at with my routine and my arm feels great. … I’m going to keep doing my job and I’m not too worried about that stuff — it’ll take care of itself.”

Samardzija has one more year of arbitration left and will be a free agent after the 2015 season. He told his agent he did not want to be distracted by contract talk until something had been finalized.

Samardzija would appear to be the type of pitcher the Cubs want to move forward with in their rotation but Theo Epstein has been intent on rebuilding the farm system, and has traded two starting pitchers each of the last two seasons, including Matt Garza and Scott Feldman last year. Jason Hammel and Jake Arrieta also have reportedly drawn interest from teams looking for starting pitching.

“We have a couple guys on the trading block, but that’s what comes with being quality starters or being able to pitch at the level some of the guys can,” said Arrieta after his start Wednesday in Miami. “I look forward to having Jason and Jeff as teammates as long as possible. Obviously, I’d like them both to stay here. Theo and Jed [Hoyer] will do everything in their power to put the best team on the field, whether it’s keeping those guys or swapping them for prospects who they feel can be here for a long time.

“It’s really not something we need to think about,” Arrieta said. “You have to continue to go day to day and see what happens. I’d love to see those guys stick around.”

– Carrie Muskat

27 Comments

I really like Samardzija and I hope they sign him. But I also don’t think they should offer much more than $85m for five years. So if he doesn’t sign, hopefully the Blue Jays will offer the type of player package that the Cubs are asking for. If not, keep him next year and see what happens.

Thats the dilemma. Take a chance and keep him, he gets hurt next April, there goes the trade value. I dont think ( my opinion ) he is worth the 85 Million they are offering.

Is he a #1 starter, not right now. Can he be, maybe! Then again he could get hurt. Its always a gamble, but I hope they get all they can now.

At this point I would rather they keep Arrietta and Hammell.

I don’t mean keep him next year so you can trade him. I mean try to win next year. I’m hoping the mid-season trades end next season. Hopefully they can sign him. If not, they can always make a qualifying offer and get a return that way. I live in the Bay Area where the Giants have lost five in a row (yes!), and I can tell you that the fan base is start to grumble about the $100m+ that was given to Matt Cain, and he’s won two World Series.

In your opinion was Matt Cain worth it? Was he given that contract after the 1st WS win? After the 2nd WS win?
How has he pitched since given the contract? I really dont know, I dont keep with the Giants.

Cain – I don’t know. But he just got shelled by the White Sox the other day. On the radio today, there was a lot of hand-wringing over the fact that he has a lot of mileage and people feel his best days are behind him. And they discussed an article somewhere (I think the USA Today, but not sure), that looked at all the $100m players. And I guess that almost none of them are doing well; either injured or under-performing. Verlander, Cain Kershaw, etc. They also said that the A’s never get saddled with a bad contract!

How many 100 Million contracts have the A’s given out? None that I know of, of course I dont follow the A’s.

Thats one reason I dont think Samardizja is worth 85 Million. Turns out Jackson was not worth what he got. But based on stats at the time he signed, it was reasonable according to some.

Yes, Cubs Win, it was a USA TODAY item to which you refer. It appeared yesterday, Wednesday. It did not include Kershaw, however. Did cite Sabathia and Hamels, in addition to Verlander. What is being suggested is that Cain is not able, at least not as able as he once was. Cain is just 29, and has worked close to 1,800 major league innings, and that may be taking its toll. His strikeout-to-walk ratio is his worst since he debuted in 2005. He`s still owed close to $70 million on his six year contract.

The A’s would never give out a $100m contract. They’re a small market, “Moneyball” team. That’s the whole point. Anyway, nice chatting, We seem to be in agreement.

Well at least someone will agree with me, I will catch it tomorrow for my opinion on Samardizja and his not signing for 85 Million. But its ok, we all have different opinions.

Aloha Cubs Win and Jasper- gosh just saw this post by Carrie and had to read it! One of the prevailing thoughts back when Barry Zito became a free agent was that he should have worked with the A’s for $75/80mil, stayed with a system he knew well and excelled in. But there were not a lot of lefty’s entering free agency so he got $126mil from the Giants. He showed some sparks and did bring the team back from the “dead” in the 2012 series but mostly did not pan out. So, with the Shark, would he possibly accept a 3yr contract worth a little more per year to stay? Not sure but when agents get involved and are whispering in the ears of players, it can be hard to know which way the wind will blow. I have a hard time paying any pitcher the amount of money we see today, do not get me wrong they have value and play an important role. But most starting pitchers are only starting high 20’s to low 30’s (amount of games) and the rest of the 8 positions if you have concrete starters are going out there 140, 150+ games. A pitcher does stress their body-arm in different ways then the other positions but look at catcher and the wear and tear on the person. If Shark really wanted to stay a Cub I think he would make it happen but since he turned down $85mil, all bets are off. Enough of the rambling, I almost look forward to the season after July, so there are less of these distractions. Mahalo!

K.G. brings up another name in Zito who signed for over a 100 Million.

Maybe Doug or petrey10 could let us know how many pitchers signed for: lets say 65 Million or more and were competitive during the length of their contract?

I may be wrong, but I just dont see a Pitcher being worth that. As K. G. points out, every 5th day they pitch, but thats not the reason for me. Its the fact Pitchers just wear down and injuries occur. Of course, there are the few, Maddux, Ryan, Spahn and many others in over 100 years of baseball. Those guys are rare.

Speaking of Maddux, Jasper, did you see that stat in regard to Tony Gwynn`s passing? He faced Maddux well over 100 times and never fanned even once.

Samardzija will be 30…..never won more then 10 games in a year in his career…..never lead the league in any pitching stat…..never got the Cubs into the post season…….and he turned $17 million per year for the next five years………..I just looked up the word “greed”…and saw Jeff’s face.

It’s not greed. It’s wanting to get what you think you are worth. There is no way Samardzija would turn that money down if he didn’t think he couldn’t get that type of money from someone else. That’s how contracts work in professional sports. You are worth as much as someone is willing to pay you. And when negotiating contracts in baseball, neither side really cares about how many games the pitcher won or if they’ve led the league in anything or not or if they’ve gotten their team into the playoffs (which is ludicrous anyway because one starting pitcher alone is not enough to make any team a playoff team). It’s what are your overall stats (of which wins is way down on the list of importance), who has similar overall stats as you do, what are they being paid, and how well do you project out over the next few seasons. Homer Bailey’s name has been brought up as a comp to Samardzija. Samardzija believes that he compares favorably to Bailey and projects to be better than Bailey over the course of the next few years. Bailey is making $17.5 million a year, so it stands to reason that Samardzija thinks he should be making more than that. And we wouldn’t even be discussing this right now if there wasn’t at least another team out there that would be willing to pay him that in free agency. You can simplify baseball to being a kids game and take the stance that players should be thrilled to be playing the game and should take whatever salary that their hometown team offers them all you want, but in reality it is a business. The professionals who play possess a skill set that 99.99999999% of the population do not possess, which is why most kids who play this kid’s game don’t grow up to be professional baseball players. The teams involved are multi-million and in some case billion dollar companies that provide entertainment to those who are interested. So in this case, why shouldn’t a player try to get every penny of what he is worth? To call a player who tries to do that greedy is to show that you have a lack of understanding about how the game functions in today’s world.

I guess I lack the understanding of how the game functions in todays world. I am just not going to pay a guy 85 Million and call it business. Especially a Pitcher.
Then again, the Cards were smart not to give Pujiols over 200 Million.
It is a huge business, tons of debt owed on the Team. Stadium overhaul. Minor league rebuilding, scouting, IT DEP, concessions, many employees.
85 million or more for one pitcher or very good prospects?
My hope is, they go with the prospects.
Either way, I am a Cubs fan.

The thing is, paying a player $85 million is business for a professional sports team. I’m not saying whether it would be good business in this case, but to say a player seeking out $85 million is greedy is flat out wrong if they have the comps to back it up. Jason Hammel seeking out an $85 million contract extension would be pretty extreme, but Samardzija is in that neighborhood, therefore he has every right to go for that type of money.

Doug I understand exactly what your saying, or at least I think I do, your looking at it from both sides, keeping an open mind, understanding it is business. You are not saying sign him or dont sign him, your not saying he is worth 85 million or more, or not.
You are being open minded on the progress or lack of it. Either way, its just business? That is awesome.
I cant view it that way, Cubs Talk used the word greed, I did not this time, but I have in the past.
To me its very simple: You say you want to stay with the Cubs! Your offered 85 Million to do so. Sign the contract. lol If you dont sign the contract, you obviously do not want to stay with the Cubs, in which case, in my opinion, I would say its greed.
We are talking 85 MILLION dollars here.

Of course when a player says “I want to play here” what he is really saying is “I want to play here… as long as you are willing to pay me what I’m worth.” Otherwise, there would be a whole bunch of players playing for the league minimum salary. I mean, David Wright loves playing in New York, but that doesn’t mean the Mets were able to lowball him the last time his contract was up. And Derek Jeter is the face of the 21st Century Yankees, but that doesn’t mean the Yankees can have him play for free.
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And again, it’s not greed because it’s something that he’s well within his rights to ask for. Remember, it’s “I want to play here… as long as you are willing to pay me what I’m worth.”
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Lastly, $85 million is a lot of money to you and me, but it’s not exactly breaking new ground as far as professional sports are concerned. And professional athletes don’t go into contract negotiations with the mindset of “I’ve got enough money to take care of me and my family for the rest of our lives, so the dollar figure is not important” or else we’d have a lot of professional athletes playing their sports for the league minimum (which, by the way, is still several times more than any one of us regular folk will probably make on a yearly basis). As I have said, they have a very unique skill set which people are entertained by and that entertainment generates billions of dollars for the leagues they play in, so $85 million is not exactly out of place as far as professional athletes are concerned. So again, it’s not greed. It’s how the game today is set up and that’s just how it is.

We just have different opinion on this Doug, I respect yours, but I have mine.
I just dont see Samardizja as Super Star, I dont see him getting paid like one.
If he says he wants to stay here and wont accept 85 Million, I really have no other word for it, nor can I view it any other way.

If Samardzija has a competitive bone in his body, and I believe he has several, he would want to get out of Dodge immediately, if not sooner. Who would not want to work games that matter and seek to reach the playoffs and ultimately the WS? To toil for a bottom feeder is the opposite of challenging.

jhosk, we all know Samardizja is very competitive, at this point that and his talent is all I respect about him. If he wants to leave, I dont mind. If he wins 3 games for the Red Sox in the 2014 WS, I dont care.
That last line, after almost three years of building? Come on jhosk?

If that were true, then no one would want to play on the Cubs or any other under performing team and those teams would cease to exist due to lack of players. Enough already with this “If he were a competitive guy…” nonsense. He’s competitive, the 25th man on the roster is competitive, the backup catcher in AA is competitive, anyone who plays professional sports is competitive or else they would have never made it to the pros in the first place.

I agree with Doug that it is okay by me if Shark thinks he deserves more. Go get it, big guy. I also agree with Jasper that it is not in the Cubs’ interest to offer more than they have. Six years and $100m+ for a 29 year old? Is that what he wants? I’d rather have the prospects. But maybe there is more to the story? Maybe he wants a no trade clause? Maybe he really does want to win right now? I’ve found Carrie to be a solid reporter, and if she says the two sides are still talking then I believe it.

$85 Million……..that is more money then Santo – Banks – Williams – Jenkins made combine while playing baseball.
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Lets get the Prospects…….who knows, maybe we get three Pitchers who can help us win a World Series.

Yes, and the Cubs annual revenue today is probably more than all of Major League Baseball’s combined from 50 years ago. There’s a lot more money in baseball and in professional sports in general today, which is one reason why team can afford $85 million contracts and more.

I see they signed some Draft Picks today, or least announced some. Stinnett, Sands, Steele and Norwood. Is that the top seven so far, as well as well as #11 Brink?
the 2014 Draft Listing still only lists Schwarber as being signed. Kind of hard to keep track.

Kansas City Royals pushing hard for Samardzija according various reports…..Royals are stacked with Pitchers in their farm system

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