The Chicago Cubs have two starters on the injured list that they were counting on at the beginning of the season, and that means they could be going after another pitcher before MLB’s trade deadline. Brett Taylor of Bleacher Nation wrote on Friday that one hurler the Cubs might go after is San Francisco Giants star Kevin Gausman.
The writer said one reason he believes this is a possibility is that team president Theo Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer have shown quite a bit of interest in him in the past.
Gausman was originally on the Cubs’ radar when he was with the Baltimore Orioles. Now, he’s on his third team since 2018, on a one-year deal. San Francisco is not considered a contender in 2020 and they could be looking to trade whatever they can for prospects or cash. Taylor thinks that could include Gausman, who could be had for a steal, because of his price tag and the fact that he’s a one-year rental.
The Cubs’ ownership and front office have talked about their lack of financial flexibility this summer, but things might be a bit different for this pitcher. He’s also well aware the club has shown interest before.
Earlier this summer, not long after signing with the Giants, he talked to The Athletic about what his new general manager, Scott Harris, told him.
“After I signed, I was on the phone with Scott and he told me, ‘Man, when I was with the Cubs, we literally tried to trade for you every year,'” the hurler said. “That’s awesome. You always want to be in a place where you’re valued and wanted.”
Despite one of their own claiming the Cubs were always going after him, they were never able to land the 29-year-old. Taylor noted they might not even be looking to land him this time either.
He isn’t putting up truly special numbers. Through six appearances he’s posted a 4.65 earned run average. He’s allowed 34 hits in 31 innings. What the analyst thinks might intrigue the Cubs is that the hurler also has 42 strikeouts in those 31 innings. It also appears he’s getting stronger as the season goes along.
Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports documented that the pitcher had 11 strikeouts in his latest outing, and was still hitting 96.5 mph on his fastball, despite throwing 106 pitches.
Pitch No. 106 for Kevin Gausman is a 96.5 mph fastball that gets his 11th strikeout. That's a career-high.
— Alex Pavlovic (@PavlovicNBCS) August 16, 2020
The Bleacher Nation writer made it clear that he had not been told the Cubs were going after Gausman, or any other player ahead of the August 30 deadline for trades. The analyst just believes that if the team does go after someone to shore up their rotation, fans should keep an eye on this one.