It is no big secret that the Chicago Cubs are one of the top two teams in the running for Jake Peavy of the San Diego Padres.
As discussions go on, different names are being tabbed as likely candidates. Surprisingly, Jeff Samardzija's name has come up.
It is not a surprise that San Diego would want him in return, or that the Cubs would think about trading him. Ultimately, they want nothing more than to hang onto him. They have been high on him ever since they drafted him out of Notre Dame.
Samardzija was suppose to be somewhat of a project—raw talent that never really blossomed because up until he was drafted, football got most of the attention. Samardzija has a live arm with the potential of hitting 100mph on the radar gun, the potential to start or close, and the only player in the draft that had dealt with Major League style crowds.
So it is no surprise that the Padres would want him in the deal. Luckily for the Cubs, who don't want to trade him anyway, Jeff has a no-trade clause. When he was drafted by the Cubs, it was not known if he was going to play in the NFL also.
Chicago was where he wanted to be and baseball was what he wanted to play. The Cubs gave him a $10 million signing bonus and a no-trade clause to sign him and effectively keep him off of the gridiron.
There was a reason Samardzija wanted the no-trade clause. His reason was that he is right where he wants to be. He quit football, where he quite possibly could have been a top 15 pick, for the chance to play for the Cubs.
This is the exact reason Samardija wanted the no-trade clause. He doesn't want to play in San Diego, he wants to stay right where he is.
The trade that the Cubs offered, that reportedly put them ahead of the Braves in the Peavy sweepstakes, involves Felix Pie, Ronny Cedeno, and Sean Marshall. They are looking for another piece to put them over the top, possibly Donald Veal or Kevin Hart. Samardzija would have worked, but his agent, Mark Rodgers, announced that Jeff has no intent to waive his no-trade clause.
Rodgers said this, “Under no circumstances are we going to waive the no-trade provisions.”
(The players listed in the trade and the Mark Rodgers quotes were reported by Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports.)
So, while some think that Jeff Samardzija's stay in Chicago could be short lived, it is not likely. He is exactly where he wants to be, and lucky for him, he controls whether he leaves or not.
It may also be lucky for Chicago that Jeff Samardzija bleeds Cubbie blue.