David Kaplan reported earlier this week the Cubs' front office may be in the business of a complete rebuild. The Sean Marshall trade could be the first step in that.
Will Matt Garza be next?
Theo Epstein has already said Garza is exactly the type of pitcher teams try to build around. He reiterated that same point Friday after the Marshall trade became official, but proposed another possibility.
"It's hard to find top-of-the-rotation type guys, so if you have them and there's a way to keep them around, that's always compelling for the club," the new Cubs president said.
Does that mean an extension could be in the works?
"That said, we've been honest with you guys too where we're in a mode where we have to listen on everybody," Theo went on to say. "Now, if there's a way to improve the long-term outlook for this club in a significant manner, we can't look past opportunities like that. We're not in a situation where we have to do anything with Garza. But generally, we're in the business right now of taking our short-term assets and turning them into long-term assets.
"In the case of Marshall, that ends up happening through a trade. We take a short-term asset, one year of Sean Marshall, and turned it what we hope will be three long-term assets. Five years of Travis Wood and the entire careers of two interesting prospects.
"So in the case of Matt Garza, perhaps nothing happens or perhaps we're able to convert him into a long-term asset by extending him on a deal that makes sense for everybody. There's always an active trade market for top-of-the rotation guys with multiple years of control."
With the recent trades around the MLB, the Cubs may be able to fetch quite a haul for a guy like Garza. A package that could make the team's future significantly brighter.
But then again, if the team needs starting pitching both now and in the future and a guy like Garza is exactly the type of guy teams want to build around, an extension -- much like the one John Danks just got on the South Side -- makes sense, too.
The idea of trading Garza has been prevalent throughout the entire offseason thus far, but that hasn't put any undue pressure on Theo or his front office staff.
"We aren't rushing into anything with Matt Garza," Epstein said. "We don't take lightly what it means to have a top-of-the-rotation-type guy in-house and one that you'd potentially be able to keep long term."