Yu Darvish is as surprised as anyone to hear reports that the Chicago Cubs are listening to trade offers for him.
The Chicago Cubs have an important year ahead of them, as Javier Baez, Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo are set to hit the open market at the end of the 2021 season. However, there’s only so much money to go around. Some have been saying that the team should trade pitcher Yu Darvish to get much-needed prospects and to free money off the books.
On Monday, MLB insider Jon Heyman said that Darvish appears to be out there in trade talks, but mostly as a “willingness to consider anything.” That was news to the veteran pitcher, who expressed his feelings with one single emoji.
Cubs doing their due diligence
Have no fear, Yu! Heyman mentions that an MLB executive says the chances of trading Darvish are “very low,” while another executive said it would probably take a team to surrender a Babe Ruth-caliber player for the Cubs to move on from Darvish. So, Darvish joins Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Zack Wheeler in the “only for a Babe Ruth return” group.
Darvish is coming off arguably the best season of his career in the shortened 2020 season. In 12 starts, he recorded a 2.01 ERA and 0.961 WHIP, striking out 93 batters in 76 innings of work. Most importantly, the veteran led the league in wins (eight) and Fielding Independent Pitching (2.23), which measures a pitcher’s effectiveness in preventing home runs, walks and hit by pitches and causing strikeouts.
Based off this season, Darvish was named a finalist for the NL Cy Young award but finished in second-place behind winner Trevor Bauer of the Cincinnati Reds.
You can understand teams listening to offers from other teams when it comes to your best players. He’s coming off a fantastic campaign and has three years and $59 million remaining on his contract, which is relatively cheap for pitching standards. That could entice any team who loses out on the Bauer sweepstakes in free agency. But, it doesn’t seem the Cubs are in a rush to move on from Darvish just yet.