REPORT: Star Pitcher Likely To Be Traded To Contender Before Deadline

Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Marcus Stroman has found himself amidst trade rumors as his team struggles to stay afloat in the MLB standings.

With the Cubs fading away from playoff contention, it is increasingly believed that Stroman will be dealt before the trade deadline.

When Stroman joined the Cubs in 2021, he was brought in with the intention of being a front-line starter who could help propel the team into playoff contention.

Standing at just 5-foot-7, the right-handed pitcher has lived up to expectations, but unfortunately, the Cubs remain far from the MLB playoff picture.

Stroman’s current contract includes a $25 million salary for 2023 and a player option worth $23.66 million for 2024.

Despite his preference to remain in Chicago, the Cubs’ front office has shown no interest in negotiating a contract extension with the veteran starter.

Consequently, with the team unlikely to make the postseason and Stroman set to become a free agent at the end of the year, it is expected that he will be traded this summer.

MLB insider Jon Morosi explained to MLB Network why he anticipates the Cubs trading Stroman this year, highlighting the current scarcity of high-end starting pitchers in the market.

Stroman, should he decline his player option for 2024, would immediately become a free agent. Due to having received a qualifying offer earlier in his career, he is not eligible to receive it again.

Faced with the prospect of losing Stroman in free agency without any compensation, the Cubs are likely to move him before the trade deadline to ensure they receive something in return.

Given Stroman’s expiring contract and control over his future, the Cubs return in a potential trade may be limited.

Other MLB teams would view him as a half-season rental, resulting in a discount on the quality of prospects they would need to offer in exchange for him.

However, this reduced acquisition cost also makes Stroman a more affordable option for multiple clubs.

Several teams have emerged as potential suitors for Stroman.

According to reports, three teams are very interested in particular…

-Boston Red Sox – The Red Sox’s starting pitchers have struggled this season, ranking 24th in ERA (4.98) and 18th in WHIP through their first 69 games. In order to contend for a Wild Card spot, Boston needs a stabilizing force in their rotation. Stroman, with his short-term impact, could be the ideal solution for a team lacking the farm system to acquire a long-term ace.

-San Francisco Giants – The Giants currently hold the second-best record in baseball since May 1, boasting an impressive 3.39 ERA during that span. However, the team has faced its fair share of injuries in the rotation. Additionally, the performances of Ross Stripling (7.24 ERA) and Sean Manaea (5.52 ERA) as back-end starters have been disappointing. Stroman’s style of play aligns perfectly with the Giants’ identity, and his impressive 61 percent groundball rate makes him an even more attractive target for San Francisco.

Arizona Diamondbacks – The Diamondbacks have emerged as one of the biggest surprises in baseball this season, positioning themselves as legitimate playoff contenders. With a talented young core boosting their lineup, Arizona now needs to add depth to its starting rotation. Stroman could easily slot in as the team’s No. 2 starter behind Zac Gallen, joining forces with Merrill Kelly to form a formidable pitching trio that would significantly improve the Diamondbacks’ 4.60 rotation ERA.

As the trade deadline approaches, it seems increasingly likely that Marcus Stroman will find himself in a new uniform, providing a much-needed boost to a contending team’s pitching staff.