A day after it was reported that the Chicago Cubs offered starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija an increased extension from their previous offer, Samardzija provided an answer.
Sources told Jon Morosi of Fox Sports that Samardzija rejected the latest contract offer from the Cubs. The contract offer was believed to be north of $85 million over the course of five years. The $85 million marks a $20 million increase from the Cubs’ previous offer.
Samardzija’s rejection of the Cubs’ offer all but confirms the belief that the starting pitcher will be traded before the July 31 trade deadline.
Samardzija has been on both ends of the spectrum for the Cubs.
At times, Samardzija has been very eager to talk about the bright long-term future that the Cubs’ have. Samardzija has also indicated that he would like to remain in Chicago with the Cubs.
Though, on other occasions, Samardzija has been critical of the Cubs’ management and the idea of being cautious with the team’s top prospects.
But any chance of Samardzija finishing out the season with the Cubs probably went out the window when the starting pitcher rejected the latest contract offer from the Cubs.
With Samardzija refusing to make the transition from short-term asset to long-term asset, that leaves the front office with only one resolution. The resolution is the same one that saw starting pitchers Scott Feldman and Matt Garza be traded by the Cubs last season. The Cubs made out well in the trades of Feldman and Garza as the team acquired a plethora of prospects that included Jake Arrieta, Pedro Strop, C.J. Edwards, and Mike Olt.
Arrieta and Strop appear to be long-term fixtures on the Cubs’ pitching staff while Edward is arguably the Cubs’ top pitching prospect.
With Samardzija now firmly on the trading block, expect the Cubs’ front office to once again strike gold in their hunt for impact prospects.