Arguably the best part about the MLB trade deadline is speculating what players could move and what players actually will move. There are likely 15 teams currently in the market for starting pitching, among them our beloved Seattle Mariners (55-46, 1.0G behind Oakland). It’s easy to list off the household names that could be on the move before July 30th (Scherzer, Berrios, Gibson, Means, Marquez, etc.), but a lesser-known name that is potentially a perfect fit for the Mariners is Zach Davies of the Chicago Cubs.
Davies (4.30 ERA, 94 ERA+, 1.0 WAR) is a 28-year-old born currently in his 7th year as a major league pitcher. His 2021 ERA is misleading – his April ERA was 9.47, which means he’s settled into the season after a few rough outings. Since May 1, he’s posted the following monthly ERA values: 1.72 (May), 3.82 (June), and 4.30 (July).
It is worth noting the downside: he is tied for the most walks surrendered in the majors (54 BB’s). Even given his high walk rate, he’s consistently a top-3 starting pitcher in terms of games started – this type of consistency and health has been a huge issue for the Mariners rotation and is something we’re dying to have on our pitching staff.
Considering his ERA+, he’d fit in nicely as a number 4 pitcher and wouldn’t disrupt the three-headed monster we currently deploy at the top of our rotation. Making trades can be a tricky thing, and clubhouse cohesion is incredibly important to maintain – a single trade can derail a clubhouse’s mojo.
An important detail in the Zach Davies trade frenzy was announced a few days ago via John Heyman:
While it’s unsurprising that Davies has attracted interest from other organizations, it does highlight the need so many contenders have for starting pitching. It’s safe to assume that, given where the Cubs stand with their roster, they’ll likely look to acquire youth in any trade they make for Davies to retool an organization only a few years removed from a World Series title.
With Baez and Bryant potentially on the move, Kyle Hendricks on the last year of his deal, and Joc Pederson already in Atlanta (for now), it’s safe to say the Cubs need young talent and they need it fast. Here are some potential trade offers the Mariners could make.