Marlon Byrd Drawing Interest

Cubs center fielder Marlon Byrd is drawing interest from two National League teams, Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times reports. The Cubs offered Byrd to the Nationals for pitching and the Braves are also discussing the 34-year-old. 

GM Jed Hoyer has said he won’t be surprised if the Cubs make a move leading up to Opening Day. The team currently appears to be listening to offers for Byrd rather than shopping him, according to Wittenmyer.

Byrd posted a .276/.324/.395 line in 482 plate appearances in 2011, his second season in Chicago. He earns $6.5MM in 2012 and hits free agency next winter. The Fielding Bible Volume III describes Byrd as a reliable if unspectacular center fielder who makes up for an ordinary throwing arm with good reads and a quick release.

If the Cubs traded Byrd, Reed Johnson and Joe Mather could get more playing time in the short-term. Top prospect Brett Jackson is “ready to play here for sure," in the opinion of manager Dale Sveum. Jackson figures to be an option for the Cubs at some point in 2012, even if he needs some more minor league seasoning.


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81 Comments on "Marlon Byrd Drawing Interest"


Mike Mark Sopp
3 years 4 months ago

wonder if the Indians would be interested…..

sjberke1
3 years 4 months ago

A couple of weeks ago, Byrd to the Nats for Lannan might have been plausible. Maybe it still is, but since then Wang has gotten hurt and Bernardina has come on strong.

laffingrass
3 years 4 months ago

Why would the Cubs want John Lannan?

Sourbob
3 years 4 months ago

Exactly my question.

gwells
3 years 4 months ago

what pitching do you think they were asking for? byrd is essentially on a 1 yr deal and is 34, the cubs aren’t going to get a top prospect for him.

BDLugz
3 years 4 months ago

Cubs need relievers, we have a plethora of average 4th/5th starters.

CubShrubTrima
3 years 4 months ago

we could use a closer, but not relievers………unless it was ogando

Guest
3 years 4 months ago

Yeah, why would they want to get a guy that would be their 2nd best pitcher and is younger than the guy being traded away?

3 years 4 months ago

You honestly think Lannan is better than Volstad and Maholm? Let alone Garza and Dempster. 

sourbob
3 years 4 months ago

“B-b-b-b-but he won ten games and had a nice ERA!”

[/sarcasm]

sourbob
3 years 4 months ago

Putting aside for a moment the notion that a guy in line for another 1.1-1.4 WAR season would be better than what the Cubs already have (he wouldn’t be), you still have to ask why a rebuilding team looking to save money and acquire controllable assets would deal one well-paid, middling veteran for another one…

baseball52
3 years 4 months ago

To the Red Sox for Kurcz and Carpenter. hah

craigkimbrelfan
3 years 4 months ago

Braves.  

3 years 4 months ago

Marlon Byrd for Zeke Spruill? 

Brv Rocks
3 years 4 months ago

Too much to give up.  Spruill is a top ten prospect for the Braves.

NYBravosFan10
3 years 4 months ago

Spruill is worth Byrd but only if he continues to wear that helmet. Thing makes him look menacing and therefore he provides some attitude ;). To be honest, Spruill might not be worth Byrd, but remember who is making these decisions now for the Cubs.

scott brecht
3 years 4 months ago

sorry.  the helmet is gone.  

cubsfan97
3 years 4 months ago

Problem with Byrd for Lannan is we already have 8 starting pitchers for 5 spots.  Garza, Dempster, Volstad, Samardzija and Maholm is our rotation, with Wells, Lopez and Travis Wood left for the bullpen or AAA.  I understand having good depth, but after a while its not depth, its hoarding.

Ray Mitten
3 years 4 months ago

I don’t think the Nats are going to tradea reasonably young lefthanded major league starting pticher for a stopgap 34 year old outfielder, so my question as a Nats fan is why would the Nats trade Lannan for Byrd?  Perhaps the Cubs are seeking pitching prospects for Byrd, which would make some sense on both sides, since the Cubs are several years away from contention and are being rebuilt, and the Nats are seeking a short term CF until Bryce Harper is ready.

FS54
3 years 4 months ago

except the fact that we don’t have immediate pitching prospects after that Gio deal. I think whatever pitching prospects we have, we need to hold onto them. We will need most in near future, once Ejax and cmw leave after the season.

sourbob
3 years 4 months ago

The Nats would probably love to trade Lannan for Byrd–a mid seven figure salary they don’t particularly need for a mid seven figure salary guy they do need. Lannan may be young, but his career high WAR is 1.4 and he already makes $5MM. He only has one year of team control left after this season and the raise he’s due to get in arbitration is almost certainly going to make his salary more than he’s worth.

That said, I can’t imagine the Cubs would want him, so you’re safe. Your line of thinking that they would want prospects is almost certainly closer to the truth. I don’t think they necessarily have to be pitching prospects, though. Just controllable, forecastable assets.

Holy_Cattle
3 years 4 months ago

Rangers?

johnnythoren3
3 years 4 months ago

Ba Ba Ba Ba Byrd Byrd Byrd Byrd is the word.

craigkimbrelfan
3 years 4 months ago

You know when you get excited about a potential Marlon Byrd acquisition that your team has possibly the most boring FO in baseball.  I’ll take it…

erm016
3 years 4 months ago

What did you expect them to do as far as deals? not a lot available, not a lot of “needs” either.

craigkimbrelfan
3 years 4 months ago

 I didn’t criticize.  Just said I’m bored. 

NYBravosFan10
3 years 4 months ago

Why…on earth…would the Braves want this guy? Chipper is going to out a month at the most!!! Are we really going to pay the Cubs a significant amount just to not have to settle for Jordan Parraz, Luis Durango or Jose Constanza? Geez, Frank Wren isn’t messing around is he?

3 years 4 months ago

Remember to take these articles with a grain of salt.  A lot of times “interest” is interpreted by a GM saying “yeah he’s a nice looking player”, and rumors take off.

craigkimbrelfan
3 years 4 months ago

You’d rather count on a tandem of the guys you mentioned than a starting major league OFer? 

I gotta disagree.  If they can get him on the cheap, then do it. 

NYBravosFan10
3 years 4 months ago

I don’t at all disagree lol I’ve always loved this guy. Having him on our bench would be awesome. I was merely surprised that we’d do that.

Brv Rocks
3 years 4 months ago

Totally agree!!

kray1000
3 years 4 months ago

Might be hard to get him on the cheap though (even if it were just a salary dump) since he makes $6.5M this year.  Cubs might have to throw some money to the Braves to make it work, and I think the Cubs will get a better offer from another club with money to burn willing to pay his salary.
He would be a good fit in the Atlanta clubhouse and the Braves have always liked him.  Maybe the Braves could justify the cost by using Prado in a super-utility role, or offset it by trading away a similar player.

jb226
3 years 4 months ago

The Cubs have no real reason to dump salary, at least not at this point in the season.  At midseason they might feel a need to get rid of Byrd to open a spot for Jackson, but that’s down a whole road of “if this happens” that we can’t predict.

On the same token, sending money along would be no issue for the Cubs — but they would want a better return for it.  If it came down to “you take his salary and give us just enough that we can say it was a ‘trade'” and “we’ll give you a decent player but you pay the bills,” the latter would win out.

“Decent,” of course, is relative, and I’m not going to speculate on the return Byrd should bring.  But you won’t get him as a salary dump until at least midseason and even then only if it’s the best the Cubs can do.

rockfordone
3 years 4 months ago

Why not a blockbuster with the Red Sox – Middlebrooks – Anderson – Bowden for Byrd and Dempster and cash (Dempster’s salary minus 3M). Bard could go back to bullpen.

WorldsBiggesDBack
3 years 4 months ago

 Why would the Red Sox give up a decent prospect in Middlebrooks for a old CF and an overpaid back of the rotation starter?

johnsilver
3 years 4 months ago

 Why on earth would Boston want either Dempster or Byrd? Byrd they have no use for with CC back after the 1st week or 2 of the season and have Sweeny/Ross to either play RF and the other as the 4th OF with Kalish ready to play come May. Dempster is no improvement really over the collection of retreads they have signed to ML deals (cook/Ohlendorf/Padilla) and who would want Dempster in the AL East, much less making a tiny fraction of the 13m he is due and giving up Middlebrooks??? Isn’t going to happen for aged discards like those 2.

Sorry Cubs fans, but even if Boston *did* decide to move him it would take something that would actually help the team and not just add +/- 20m in lost cause payroll.

101andCounting
3 years 4 months ago

While I agree that this trade makes little sense, Dempster has been an insanely consistent MOR starter for his entire career other than last year. He’s certainly a better pitcher than Cook, Ohlendorf, or Padilla.

johnsilver
3 years 4 months ago

 Boston supposedly never offered Oswalt more than around 5-6m and he has a better track record in the NL than Dempster and both would have to pitch in the AL East. The proposed move above was asking for one of the Red Sox very best prospects and Dempster is due 13m, 8m more than what Boston was willing to give oswalt.

If Boston was looking at the Cubs for a pitcher, it would be towards Garza, who was one tough cookie vs top teams in the AL East and has proven it in the past if they were going to be parting with anyone along the caliber of a Middlebrooks was my point and they just were not going to be adding salary for crapshoots along the lines of Dempster when the probably could have inked oswalt all along earlier, should they have increased their offer.

I have nothing against him, just don’t think he could have any success in the AL/AL East. Another Javy Vazquez in waiting.

sourbob
3 years 4 months ago

True on Dempster vs. Oswalt… if the Sox really were willing to pony up $10-13MM for one year of an aging starter, they’d do it for Oswalt. They wouldn’t deal talent for the privilege of paying that money to an inferior pitcher.

sourbob
3 years 4 months ago

I like when people respond to individual comments with “Sorry ____ fans!” Clearly, you heard about the secret meeting where we made rockfordone our leader and spokesperson.

johnsilver
3 years 4 months ago

 Apologies if it was a general response there.. it was over the top proposal made and something would see from yes.. Some Sox fans also on here…

sourbob
3 years 4 months ago

The proposal totally deserved mocking, imo. Just reminding you to keep it pointed in the right direction.

Hoosierdaddy92
3 years 4 months ago

I’d love the Tigers to trade for this guy as a LF. As a guy who hits around .285, hits for good contact, and doesn’t strike out nearly as often as AJax, he could be the perfect fit for them as a leadoff hitter. Better call than Austin Jackson that is. I don’t really care if he doesn’t have plus speed.  Leyland doesn’t like to run his players anyway. Tigers could send a lower level pitching prospect and Brandon Inge so that the Cubs can have some veteran leadership and competition at both 3b and 2b, instead of just relying on Ian Stewart and Darwin Barney. The Cubs could also demand a better prospect from the Tigers if they made the even salary switch of Byrd for Inge.

stl_cards16
3 years 4 months ago

I’m sure the Cubs want Inge……

Hoosierdaddy92
3 years 4 months ago

I am not saying they necessarily would. But if they wanted a better prospect from the Tigers, they’d be willing to make the even salary switch of Brandon Inge/Marlon Byrd.

sourbob
3 years 4 months ago

Read it again. He’s not saying they would want him at all. He’s saying the Cubs taking Inge’s salary would motivate the Tigers to give them  better prospects… which it would.

FillyPhan
3 years 4 months ago

Rarely strikeouts? Averages over 100Ks a season

Hoosierdaddy92
3 years 4 months ago

compared to AJax’s 180 strikeouts a season, I will take it. I should have said, nearly often as AJax. It’s fixed now

formerdraftpick
3 years 4 months ago

I can see either the Orioles, Cards or Blue Jays because they are Byrds too.

crashcameron
3 years 4 months ago

don’t forget, Angels have wings too

Braves95
3 years 4 months ago

Jordan Parraz look good at the plate and outfield, hold on to the procpects and use them in July Trade Deadline if they need to upgrade in the corner outfield, someone with  power.

Brv Rocks
3 years 4 months ago

Parraz has never played at the MLB level.  I like him, but the Braves need more than that for the 4th OF, especially since Diaz and Hinske both look lost at the plate.

kray1000
3 years 4 months ago

Unfortunately Parraz isn’t much of an outfielder, but the Braves do need his bat.

jmag043
3 years 4 months ago

Nationals should trade tanner Roark for Byrd. That is fair

Chris
3 years 4 months ago

Horrible trade for the Cubs

nlewiss
3 years 4 months ago

Marlon Byrd’s passion for the game is matched by few others in MLB. Sees a ton of pitches, never flinches on an inside pitch, and implores teammates to “grind it out”! Not to mention the fastest home run trot in the game. He’s a joy to watch as a fan, even if he isn’t the most talented or game-changing of players.  

WorldsBiggesDBack
3 years 4 months ago

 I think you just turned Ron Gardenhire on!

3 years 4 months ago

National fans are ludicrously overrating John Lannan. Jedstein would never move a player like Byrd for an SP like Lannan.  Oh, but his ERA was good!!  Yeah well, his peripheral and advanced stats were awful.  He’s not very good.

Cubs will be looking for a decent B-to-B+ prospect, even if the guy is really young. I certainly see no reason they won’t get it, either. 

And if Byrd is dealt, I do think it’ll be a lot more ABs for Dave Sappelt.  Great opportunity for him to prove, once and for all, that he’s a 4th outfielder.

Josh Carr
3 years 4 months ago

While I will agree Nats overate him along with others, to suggest that ERA,AVG,HR,RBI’s mean nothing now that advanced statistics are out is ludacris. Although I do agree advanced statstics give a detailed look into a player, I dont believe that the stats The American Pastime was built upon are worthless. Both are good measures of players. You dont get a 1.5 or, 2.3, or 2.7 or any ERA number that good if your not actually pitching good, regardless of new or old stats. We often tend to discredit a player fast if he isnt ours through some new stat, and just as quick to defend our own if insulted. Point being You gotta be kidding if you think GM’s dont look at a High AVG or Low ERA or High HR Total…. Those stats still play a large role in todays game just as they did when Baseball was started. Just as they will be ALONG with the new advanced stats. 

johnsilver
3 years 4 months ago

 I’ll agree with that. It’s like many now forget the stats the game was founded upon mean nothing and ones some have invented within the last 15 years or so are all that matters. it’s like other changes in US society that have changed for the worse IMO.

3 years 4 months ago

Cubs will likely be looking for the salary relief ($6.5 mil) + a low level prospect. Unless the Cubs pay the coin, they’re not going to get a lot of value in return. 

3 years 4 months ago

No. Byrd’s averaged 2.5 WAR over the past five years and is only getting paid $6.5M. That’s a positive value proposition.

In order to get Byrd, someone’s going to have to give up at least a decent (#10-20) prospect that has some upside before even getting into the salary considerations. If the Cubs are going to eat the salary as well, you’re looking at the lower portion of the top 10 to top 15 prospect, depending on the organization’s farm system.

Where does this notion that above-average players with positive value contracts are salary dump guys come from??

-C

Josh Carr
3 years 4 months ago

They think becuz a player hits 30 hes over the hill, and that a younger minor leaguer in their system could be bettter for a lot lower $ cost, therefore freeing up the little bit of $ to persue fantasy player X when in reality they are losing a valuable asset willingly. People are blinded by Big Names and a Little Flash, and then complain when the Hit or Miss guy actually misses more than a few times….Now they complain they wish the would have kept “Player X” or “Player Y”. Everyone needs to realize with the exception of the Yanks,Sox,Angels,Tigers,Ph*ckers,Nats,(and now apparantly MIA Marlins),your team is not going to have those MVP players unless its home-grown….
-JC

3 years 4 months ago

The Phillies are supposedly looking for a RH outfielder.  I could see them showing interest, especially because Amaro loves him some over 30 bench players.

Phillies_Aces35
3 years 4 months ago

I don’t understand why a bench player’s age matters at all other than to give you a reason to throw a shot at Amaro.

Joshua Edwards
3 years 4 months ago

Cubs might be willing to eat salary if it did lead to an exchange for better prospects, especially because of the new CBA. They can’t overspend to land draft picks, but they could conceivably spend money to move veterans for young players.

But I just don’t see Byrd landing young talent even if the Cubs paid his whole ticket. And they’ve got an army of B-/C+ prospects already. 

Fortunately for Chicago, there might be enough bidding between two teams to make it worthwhile to move Marlon. Because the Cubs don’t want a prospect as much as they want salary relief and flexible playing time for other OFers–they get that as long as Byrd is gone.

Any team willing to pay Byrd’s salary probably gets him for a career minor-leaguer and a bucket of chicken.

sourbob
3 years 4 months ago

Saving money is nice, but I hardly think that’s one of the Cubs’ main motivations for dealing Byrd. Army of B-/C+ prospects or not, that’s probably exactly what Theo and Jed would want for him. They might, however, shift their focus to B-/C+ guys at the lower levels, riskier guys a few years away, rather than additional warm bodies to fight for time at AA and AAA.