The Chicago Cubs have made a shrewd move today heading up to the trade deadline, acquiring pitcher Felix Doubront from the Boston Red Sox in exchange for a player to be named later. The trade was first reported by Jon Paul Morosi of Fox Sports, and confirmed by other sources across Twitter.
Doubront, known mostly within Boston for his recent complaints about wanting to start instead of relieving, has posted a 6.07 ERA over 59.1 innings and 17 games, 10 of which were starts. His FIP is a slightly better 5.29, but that in itself would not be a good ERA, and Doubront has struck out a career-worst (0ver a full season) 6.5 batters per nine this season.
The Cubs brass are hoping that a change of scenery will benefit Doubront, but it remains unclear as to what Doubront’s role will be in Chicago. The team currently has Jake Arrieta, Kyle Hendricks, Tsuyoshi Wada, Edwin Jackson and Travis Wood in their rotation, and Carlos Villanueva is the team’s long reliever right now. The Cubs may have been looking for left-handed help with bullpen lefties James Russell and Wesley Wright both on the trade block, or they may have been looking for rotation relief with Jackson and Wood struggling, although Jackson possesses a high salary, and Wood was an All-Star last year and the Cubs have shown tremendous patience with him.
The Red Sox could be trading Jon Lester and/or John Lackey in the hours leading up to the deadline as well, and it is clear that the BoSox are looking to stock up on prospects and rebuild for a quick turnaround next year. As for the player to be named later in the deal, the Cubs have excellent minor league depth, but will probably end up giving a highly insignificant prospect in this deal, as that is what most PTNBLs end up being.