Jeff Samardzija's exchange of arbitration filing numbers with the Cubs (Samardzija has filed for $6.2MM, with the Cubs at $4.4MM) has led to more talk about the pitcher's likelihood of being traded or signing an extension. Samardzija is eligible for free agency after the 2015 season, and has already seen many of his veteran teammates traded as the Cubs build for the future. That doesn't mean the Cubs are poised to trade him, however. Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune writes that teams like the Diamondbacks and Braves believe the Cubs have requested too much in return for Samardzija in trades.
Samardzija feels that Masahiro Tanaka's situation has had a "ripple effect" on him, Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times reports. Samardzija also implies that, if the Cubs signed Tanaka, he might be more likely to sign an extension with the Cubs. "I’ve mentioned my frustration with the 'R' word [rebuilding] before. You bring him in, and that 'R' word essentially kind of disintegrates," he says.
Wittenmyer also suggests that, due in part to the slow-developing pitching market this offseason, the Cubs are likely to begin the 2014 season with Samardzija still on the roster. CSNChicago.com's Patrick Mooney reported last week that the Cubs were likely to wait until July to trade Samardzija.