With the Chicago Cubs trying to acquire prospects and young assets to build for the future, the trade deadline is expected to be a busy time for them. One of their most valuable trade commodities was thought to be Matt Garza, though an arm injury could alter their plans.
According to Doug Padilla of ESPN Chicago, Garza's right triceps is not where it needs to be right now.
MRI shows fluid still in Garza's triceps. Won't pitch until after trade deadline.— Doug Padilla (@ESPNChiCubs) July 27, 2012
Garza left his July 21 start against St. Louis after just three innings when he experienced cramping in his right forearm.
Since Garza won't be able to pitch until after the trade deadline, it damages the potential for a trade. Teams aren't going to give up players with the hope that Garza is able to recover and make all of his starts in the final two months of the season.
None of this is to say a deal can't or won't happen; it just becomes increasingly difficult to see a scenario where a team would give the Cubs what they want in return.
The good news for the Cubs is even if teams do back off Garza because of this injury, they have him under control next season, so they can still deal him this winter and get a package of prospects that will likely be equal to what they would have gotten before the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.
They could still try to trade Garza during the waiver period, but that becomes more difficult because you can only negotiate with one team, and a lot of times a team will place a claim on a player simply to block him from going somewhere else with no intention of making a trade.
We will keep you updated on Garza's injury and the potential impact it could have on a trade as the news becomes available.