As Christmas approached, it only seemed a matter of time, not if, that a trade between the Pittsburgh Pirates and New York Yankees would take place. Multiple reports came out that the two sides were working on a deal that would have included outfielder Clint Frazier and others. However, the first hang up came when it was reported that the Pittsburgh Pirates insisted on acquiring top prospect Gleyber Torres back in the deal. Torres is one of the top potential talents in baseball as a 21-year-old. Once that report came out, it seemed the wheels came off. Reports started to surface that the two sides were at a stalemate and a deal was not close.
Since then, many have still assumed that a deal between the two sides would occur. The fact of the matter is that Yankees have the talent in their farm system to acquire the 2015 CY Young Award candidate. However, with an impasse in talks, other teams are likely going to start to show more significant interest. Meanwhile, it has been reported that the Pittsburgh Pirates are motivated to move the right hander.
So far we know that the Yankees, Rangers, Orioles, and Brewers have shown interest. Now, another NL Central team has shown interest in the Pittsburgh Pirates ace. According to Bruce Levine, the Chicago Cubs have shown interest in Gerrit Cole recently. Here is what Levine wrote:
“The two starting pitchers getting the most attention on the trade market are Pirates right-hander Gerrit Cole and Rays right-hander Chris Archer, and both are receiving attentions from top clubs like the Yankees and Cubs.”
This makes sense as the Cubs look to replace former CY Young Award winner Jake Arrieta. Rather than locking up a bunch of money in Arrieta, the Cubs could bring in a more cost effective pitcher in Cole, or previously reported Chris Archer. Doing so would allow them to save money for the 2018-2019 free agent class, and allow them to make a play for Bryce Harper or Manny Machado.
The Cubs farm system is not what it used to be, but they have plenty of young talent to offer. The first name many fans bring up is Ian Happ. The Mt. Lebanon native can play multiple positions and could help fill the void at second or third base. They also have some interesting pieces in their farm system.
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Of all the teams, the New York Yankees seem to be the best fit for both Cole and the Pittsburgh Pirates. Compared to the Cubs, the Yankees have the best farm pieces to offer. Also, dealing with the Cubs would not be ideal due to them being a division rival. All in all, it is not likely the two sides will match on a deal, but still it is interesting to see another NL Central team showing interest in Cole.