Chicago Cubs

MLB Trade Rumors: Darwin Barney Becoming a Hot Commodity on the Trading Block

CHICAGO, IL - JUNE 18: Darwin Barney #15 of the Chicago Cubs hits a run-scoring single in the 7th inning against the Chicago White Sox at U.S. Cellular Field on June 18, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Kenny DeJohnAnalyst IIIJune 20, 2012

The Chicago Cubs are committed to rebuilding, and that means that nearly everybody on the roster is a trade candidate as we approach the July 31 trade deadline.

Matt Garza, Ryan Dempster and Alfonso Soriano have commanded most of the attention, but a new name has surfaced as a possible trade candidate.

Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that rival clubs often ask the Cubs about the availability of Darwin Barney, the team's second baseman.

He goes on to say that no clubs have offered Chicago what they feel is a "sufficient amount" for Barney. While the Cubs view him as a starting second baseman, many clubs regard him as a utility player.

Rosenthal did not mention any specific packages or teams, but it's likely that the Cubs were asking for a top prospect or several mid-level prospects in return.

Determining Barney's actual value isn't easy.

In just his second full season in the league, Barney sports a .272 average with three home runs and 22 RBI. The best part of his game is his defense, as his .994 fielding percentage is second in the National League behind recently suspended Freddy Galvis (.996) of the Philadelphia Phillies.

While those numbers don't really jump out at you, it's hard to argue with his consistency. He's not going to kill you with the bat, but he'll hit well enough to keep himself in the lineup.

Barney is definitely good enough to start for several teams. However, I can also see why some teams would want him as a super utility type of guy.

He's capable of playing second, third and even shortstop on occasion. His versatility would make him a valuable asset off the bench.

If the Cubs are as serious about rebuilding as they say they are, they should really take whatever they can get for Barney. At 26-years-old, he's likely past the point of improving into the league's top-10 second basemen.

I have a feeling we'll be seeing the Cubs clean house at the deadline, and Barney may very well be one of the pieces that gets shipped out.

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