Cubs want young pitching in return for Matt Garza

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It’s quite clear by now that the Cubs are going to trade Matt Garza this winter as part of a larger rebuilding effort. Where he will land, of course, is yet to be determined. But here’s a hint:

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The Red Sox have also shown serious interest in Garza, and would do well to add a quality starter to their bleeding staff, but they don’t have the kind of pitching prospects that the Blue Jays and Yankees do. Guys like Manny Banuelos, Dellin Betances, Noah Syndergaard and Justin Nicolino.

Garza, 28, registered a 3.32 ERA and 1.26 WHIP in 31 starts this past season for the Cubs, fanning 197 batters and walking only 63 in 198 innings of work. He’s arbitration-eligible for two more years.

Phillies, Red Sox interested in Carlos Santana

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The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.

Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.

As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.