Great Moments In Brian-Roberts-To-Cubs-Trade-Rumor History
"The first test of Andy MacPhail's authority as Orioles president of baseball operations will come if a rival club makes a strong push to acquire second baseman Brian Roberts.
"A year ago, Orioles owner Peter Angelos refused to allow his previous front office to trade Roberts...Orioles executives, however, say privately that they are not under orders to keep Roberts.
"The Mets and Astros were among the teams that showed interest in Roberts before signing free-agent second basemen Luis Castillo and Kaz Matsui, respectively.
"The next team to take a run at Roberts could be the Cubs, who failed to land Matsui."
-- FoxSports.com, 12/3/07
"The Cubs and Baltimore Orioles have talked about a possible deal for switch-hitting second baseman Brian Roberts, who could move into the No. 2 spot in the lineup and provide some much needed speed. Reports that the Cubs were trading Rich Hill to the Orioles for Roberts were denied by team officials.
"'Anybody who can hit left-handed and run and play the middle of the infield, we would certainly still look into,' Hendry said."
-- Cubs.com, 12/6/07
"On hold over much of the last month, the Brian Roberts talks are on again between the Cubs and Baltimore Orioles. This deal almost certainly is going to happen--the only question is when and how much it's going to cost the Cubs."
-- Chicago Tribune, 1/10/08
"Are the Cubs still pursuing Brian Roberts or were they scared off by the steroids? He is exactly what they need to make a strong challenge (apart from a center fielder who can hit). Roberts can lead off, steal, hit for average and field. They should have enough pitchers to make the deal happen." . . . Dan W., Naples, Fla.
"The Cubs and Orioles are still talking, but some of the players mentioned recently are not involved, so don't believe the rumors. Keep in mind that Roberts is a favorite of Orioles owner Peter Angelos, who blocked a trade last year that involved the second baseman. The Mitchell Report revelations are not the holdup--it's just a matter of finding the right match for both teams, and the reports out of Baltimore are that Orioles general manager Andy MacPhail has very specific requests."
-- Cubs.com, 1/14/08
"Contrary to popular belief, knowledgeable Cubs sources say the two teams have not gotten serious about discussing specific players the Orioles would want for Roberts.
"It's highly unlikely the Cubs will trade center-field prospect Felix Pie or former top draft pick Tyler Colvin for Roberts. But a package possibly involving pitcher Sean Marshall or Sean Gallagher plus another player seems more in the ballpark.
"During the Cubs Convention last month, manager Lou Piniella said he didn't believe the Cubs would get Roberts. Piniella also expressed his pleasure with incumbent second baseman Mark DeRosa, who would be moved to a super-utility role if Roberts comes to Chicago.
"At this point, Hendry also seems resigned to moving on without Roberts if he and MacPhail can't agree on a deal."
-- Daily Herald, 2/8/08
"There is now a feeling in Orioles land that Angelos may be balking at the negotiated haul for Roberts, which according to sources, is a very fair three-player package of young pitcher Sean Gallagher, outfielder Matt Murton and infielder Ronny Cedeno. There is also a sense that Angelos has an unreasonable attachment to Roberts, who may well remind the owner of himself: a little guy who's scrapped his way to the top of his profession (no, not baseball; Angelos is at the top of the legal profession, at least in terms of dollars earned)."
-- si.com, 2/11/08
"MacPhail said more than one team has shown interest in trading for Roberts, though the Cubs are believed to be the most aggressive suitor. Roberts called the Cubs 'a great organization' and said Chicago would be a fun place to play. Roberts attended a 2003 National League Championship Series game between the Cubs and Florida Marlins as a guest of former teammate Jeff Conine and said he was amazed at the electric atmosphere at Wrigley Field."
-- Baltimore Sun, 2/20/08
MESA, Ariz. - The Cubs still hope to acquire second baseman Brian Roberts and an outfielder before the end of spring training, but general manager Jim Hendry shot down Internet and radio rumors that a trade is imminent.
"There have been no active talks in any trade situation in the last five or six days," Hendry said.
-- Chicago Tribune, 3/5/08
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - The Orioles and Chicago Cubs have not had any recent discussions about All-Star second baseman Brian Roberts, pushing the potential deal toward Opening Day or beyond.
The talks have stalled while scouts from the teams evaluate players on each other's roster. The Cubs, who are looking for a leadoff hitter to set up the middle of their lineup, have had at least one scout at every game Roberts has played this spring. Dave Engle, one of the Orioles' top scouts, went to Mesa, Ariz., to observe several of the Cubs' prospects.
"Our scouts are out and about doing their due diligence and watching the teams that they should be watching," Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail said.
Asked whether he feels compelled to make a decision on the status of Roberts by a certain date, MacPhail said, "I'm not a big one on drop-dead dates."
-- Baltimore Sun, 3/8/08
"Sources confirmed Thursday that the Cubs have a four-player offer for Roberts on the table that includes the addition of hard-throwing pitching prospect Jose Ceda. Infielder Ronny Cedeno and pitchers Sean Gallagher and Donnie Veal also are in the package.
"The Cubs and Baltimore Orioles talked again during the past week, and insiders in both camps have expressed strong feelings that a deal will get done for the All-Star second baseman. However, they consider it likely to take an 11th-hour agreement before the openers on March 31.
"It's also possible the deal could grow to include pitcher Jason Marquis going to Baltimore and outfielder Jay Payton coming to the Cubs in a 5-for-2 or 6-for-2 trade that likely would include cash."
-- Chicago Sun-Times, 3/14/08
"There have been no significant developments over the past week or two, and the time left for getting the deal done during spring training is growing short. The Orioles aren't fettered by any hard-and-fast limits on when they can act, but you can bet both teams would like to reach some semblance of roster certainty over the next 10 days.
"Does that mean a deal is imminent? No. It probably means that if the Cubs do not show a sense of urgency during the next week or so, this could stretch well into the season and the chemistry of the situation could change dramatically..."
-- Baltimore Sun, 3/15/08
"Can we please overpay for Chone Figgins and forget about Baltimore already?"
-- Cubster, The Cub Reporter, 3/15/08
btw...Thanks AZ Phil. I'm really enjoying your take on this trade.
I'm a bit disappointed on the Warren experience. Essentially they gave Castro away for crickets (OK, well they signed Zobrist with the Castro salary dump). Otherwise one might look at it as Chapman for Castro and our #1 minors prospect (Torres) + McKinney/Crawford. Seems pricey for a 2 month rental. We will see if this price tag is that steep in a relative way based on the remaining deadline deals for relievers.
Yep. One of the great things about this team (in addition to being really good at baseball) was the "likable" factor. Feels a bit different now. Who knows...maybe Chapman will be the king of the dance parties.
Here are some possible corresponding minor league moves we might see in the aftermath of the Chapman trade:
SOUTH BEND to MYRTLE BEACH: OF Donnie Dewees and INF Bryant Flete
EUGENE to SOUTH BEND: OF Robert Garcia and INF Vimael Machin
There is really no reason to replace Billy McKinney at Tennessee because both Chris Coghlan and Jorge Soler are doing their rehab at Tennessee.
And there are plenty of pitchers at Iowa. No need to replace Warren at AAA. .
I am 70 years old. The Cubs last played in the World Series in 1945. I was born in 1946. I hate to lose a prospect like Torres, but when the opportunity is there to get that World Series ring, you go for it. This was the idea in stock piling all this young talent. I would like to see Reddick added now and the Cubbies should be done.
I would expect Richard to accept an optional assignment because based on how he's played this season, there is a decent chance that he won't find work elsewhere. Rather stay and potentially get a ring. Same goes for Coghlan since he's struggled mightily this year.
Edwards should not go down. He's pitched very well and Maddon is very impressed with him. I would expect Grimm to go down for Cahill so he can get back on track (he's pitched better in July, but he's not getting enough appearances).
chitownmvp01: Indeed Clayton Richard would seem to be odd man out once Chapman reports, but Richard might accept a minor league assignment if he is promised a return to Chicago on 9/1 when MLB Active List rosters expand (Richard has minor league ioptions left).
The only player in the deal that would cause me a second thought is Gleyber Torres.
McKinney and Crawford are decent prospects but both are redundant/replaceable in the system and Warren was really only a middle-reliever or #6 starter, so to me it's really just Torres for Chapman.
There is no Comp pick for players traded mid-season. 2+ months of Chapman is it.
to get one of the best you have to give up one/some of your best...but it's a bit painful to watch the system's best prospect walk for any 2-3 month rental, especially one that's not an everyday player.
I assume Chapman will replace Richard on the roster, but who goes down when Cahill gets activated? Maybe Grimm?
And when Soler and Coghlan get healthy, how do they fit them on the roster when they're ready to be activated?
We are giving up a lot, but it's not like we're trading Addison Russell for 2+ months of Jason Hammel. When impact players become available, they are going to cost you. The other bids could also have been high.
Having Chapman as a rental is potentially less disruptive than having him come in with an extension in place.
Billy McKinney had season-ending knee surgery last August and came to Minor League Camp this year somewhat restricted. (He was used mostly as a DH in Cactus League Minor League Camp games), and I'm not sure he's 100% right now (he's repeating AA, and his XBH numbers are way down, like he's not getting good rotation in his lowev half). That might have been part of the reason why the trade wasn't completed right away.
Rashad Crawford was a basketball star in HS (he was known as "Baby Jordan", and baseball was only his second sport) and he has plus-speed and athleticism, so when the Cubs drafted him (Keith Lockhart was the scout) he was seen as a long-term project.
I was at Fitch Park the day that Rashad Crawford became a LH hitter, He waa never a switch-hitter, He went directly from being a RH hitter to a LH hitter, which I had never seen before.
I'm with Rob G and Johann here. It's not about Chapman as a pitcher. I just don't want to have to block out a real problem (the domestic violence) in order to try to enjoy the frivolous ball and stick game.
ROB G & BOB R: You're right. The QO can only be extended if the player spends the entire previous season with one club, so only the Yankees could have offered one to Chapman (if he wasn't traded). If an Article XX-B FA is traded during the season, the new club can't offer a QO. .