Dale Sveum guarantees Matt Garza won’t be traded before tonight’s start

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Based on various reports last week Matt Garza was supposed to be traded by now, but he remains with the Cubs and manager Dale Sveum guaranteed that the right-hander will make his scheduled start tonight against the Diamondbacks. Well, sort of.

“I’d say 100 percent he’s going to be pitching,” Sveum told Patrick Mooney of CSNChicago.com, although he also added: “If we get a phone call and something changes, that’s the way it is.”

So, basically, Garza will start for the Cubs tonight unless he’s traded, in which he case he won’t start for the Cubs tonight. Glad that’s all cleared up.

Report: Nationals sign Joaquin Benoit to a one-year deal

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ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Nationals have signed reliever Joaquin Benoit to a contract. Jorge Castillo of the Washington Post adds that it’s a one-year major league deal worth $1 million.

Benoit, 40, spent last season with the Phillies and Pirates. He put up a mediocre 4.65 ERA with a 46/22 K/BB ratio across 50 1/3 innings. Only 8/13 innings came with the Pirates as he dealt with a left knee injury that kept him out of action for much of the final month and a half. He also left the team in mid-September to attend to a family matter in the Dominican Republic.

Given his age and declining performance, as well as the Nationals’ bullpen depth, Benoit doesn’t figure to pitch in many high-leverage spots, but that could change with injuries.