Matt Garza trade to Texas deal on life support?


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Texas Rangers trade target Matt Garza throws a pitch.
The Matt Garza pending trade to Texas has the feeling of a soap opera.

The Texas Rangers got oh so close to acquiring Chicago Cubs right-hander Matt Garza Friday night before the deal fell apart due to a reported concern over medical reports for Neil Ramirez, the player who was the center piece of the Rangers’ package for Garza.

As midnight got closer, word began to trickle out that both sides were going to continue working on another trade package but that the deal wasn’t exactly imminent as was reported earlier in the day. In fact, the deal may be on life support.

So, where do the Rangers go from here?

That question really isn’t so easy to answer. Most still believe the Rangers have the motivation to get this deal done, but don’t think for a second that general manager Jon Daniels is going to throw together whatever package the Cubs want just to get the guy they want.

If the Rangers don’t get Matt Garza and they end up moving on to plan B, don’t be surprised if they begin to go hot and heavy with the Chicago White Sox regarding right-hander Jake Peavy and outfielder Alex Rios. While there is definite injury concern regarding Peavy, as there is with Garza as well, it gives Texas a pitcher who brings a lot of talent and ability every fifth day, and a guy who’s going to give you at least seven strong innings every time he goes out there.

With Rios, he’s the outfielder and the bat they could really use right now, especially if you figure in this little tidbit about their offense: The Rangers are 4-for-39 with runners in scoring position.

Their offense is full of missed opportunities and full of what might have been. They need to bring in a bat they can put in the mix with Nelson Cruz, Adrian Beltre, A.J. Pierzynski and Ian Kinsler, to name a few, and it would give those guys a little more protection in the lineup.

Matt Garza isn’t off the Rangers’ radar just yet, and I don’t believe this deal is completely dead. If you were following along on Twitter last night, you got the feeling this deal was going to get done one way or the other.

T.R. Sullivan of reported this morning that Texas wants a second player to be in the deal along with Garza. He cited the deal that landed them Carlos Lee from Milwaukee also brought along Nelson Cruz. When they acquired Cliff Lee from Philadelphia, they also acquired Mark Lowe in the same deal.

Some time yesterday, a report came out from Joe Davidson of the Sacramento Bee that the deal between Texas and Chicago was a six-player deal and was “99 percent done.” From that information alone, you could deduce there was no way the Rangers were about to send five prospects to the Cubs for Matt Garza. So, by doing the math, you could see four players going to Chicago for Matt Garza and one other player.

But who would be the second player Texas would want back?

A few names to keep your eyes on as you’re following this to the finish are left-handers James Russell and Travis Wood, and outfielder Nate Schierholtz.

If the Rangers want to get this deal done before Garza takes the mound again for the Cubs, reported to be Monday night, they have Saturday and Sunday to complete the agreement. If that doesn’t happen, don’t be surprised if this deal is, as Richie Whitt says, dead and gone.

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