NL Central Notes: Samardzija, Polanco, DeJesus

Homer Bailey‘s extension with the Reds could have a ripple effect within the NL Central, as Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times believes Bailey’s six-year, $105MM deal greatly exceeded a five-year extension offer the Cubs made to Jeff Samardzija.  It has been widely speculated that Samardzija will be traded or leave in free agency rather than remain a Cub, though Bailey himself isn’t so sure.  “I think the Cubs will spend money where they feel like it’s needed,” Bailey said.  “And maybe it will be Samardzija. We don’t know that.  The Cubs might be playing a bluff card. That’s part of going into a negotiation, too. There’s so many strategies.”

Here’s the latest from around the division…

  • If the Pirates are really keeping Gregory Polanco at Triple-A to keep him from reaching Super Two status, it’s a lose-lose situation for all parties, Travis Sawchik of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review writes.  Ownership could save money on Polanco’s future arbitration years, but Sawchik makes the point that those savings could cost the Bucs a playoff berth (and playoff revenue) this year since the Pirates need Polanco’s bat.
  • Polanco’s Triple-A dominance could be hurting him in some respects,’s Tom Singer opines, as the Pirates might be waiting to see how Polanco deals with adversity before calling him up to the Major League level.
  • Polanco’s situation is detailed by ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick, and one scout had high praise for the young outfielder.  Polanco was called “as close to the perfect player as you can get” and the scout described him as “Dave Parker with more speed, and Darryl Strawberry without the off-field baggage.”
  • Unlike former teammate Matt Garza, David DeJesus didn’t necessarily feel relieved to be traded from the Cubs last summer, the outfielder tells CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney.  DeJesus still has a house in the Chicago suburbs and enjoyed his time in Wrigleyville, but the Cubs’ continual moving of veterans could harm the club’s youth movement.  “Young guys have to follow leadership. I followed Mike Sweeney,” DeJesus said.  “You learn how to be a professional at that time. When they keep losing those guys, it’s going to be tougher. They’re going to have to grow up real quickly.”

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7 Comments on "NL Central Notes: Samardzija, Polanco, DeJesus"

1 year 5 months ago

I don’t see Samardzija being in Chicago past this year.

1 year 5 months ago


Nathan Boley
1 year 5 months ago

Man they are really over analyzing the Polanco thing. This was planned from the start, he may be up slightly sooner due to his hot start and the Pirates lack thereof, but this is hardly a surprise.

1 year 5 months ago

I’m not so sure that Samardzija will flee Chicago like so many like to believe. Who’s to say that he even wants to? This is all basically complete assumption at this point.

I must admit that I’m a little partial to the Cubbies. The Cubs system is well stocked, and Wrigley and Northside Chicago offers a very unique baseball culture. The bandwagon might not be full anymore, but within a half-season of regaining competitiveness, Wrigley will be a rauckus packed house once again.

A lot of players would love being a part of something like that, especially as the ace of the staff.

Scott Reppert
1 year 5 months ago

Pirates will finish under .500 with or without Polanco this year. Me? I’d wait ’til June of next year..

Mike Adamson
1 year 5 months ago

Polanco is a stud… Any bat that can get McCutchen pitches please…

Joe W.
1 year 5 months ago

Palonco is not going to push the Pirates into the playoffs with the way the team started off. Once the team in general starts playing better then maybe consider bringing him up earlier.