Chicago Cubs trade rumors: Junior Lake edition

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We areĀ just about a year removed from the Major League debut of Junior Lake, and with the way he took the league by storm, no one would have imagined his name would be in trade rumors this July. The goal of this season for Lake was for the front office of the Chicago Cubs to try and figure out if Lake was going to be part of the core moving forward. Lake finished last season very well and was almost destined to take his place as a member of the core. However, this year has been a completely different story for Lake.

After hitting .284 with an OPS of .760, Lake has regressed this season and has done so in a major way. This season lake is hitting .216 with an OPS of .620. What is even more concerning for Lake is the fact that he has been striking out at an alarming rate. Lake has already struck out 93 times this season in 268 plate appearances. This is already 25 more times than last year in just 14 more plate appearances.

Although Lake has had his share of struggles this season, he still shows flashes of the raw talent that he possesses. He has a great combination of power and speed and could very well develop into a very adequate outfielder given a bit more seasoning. Lake could be having a season similar to Starlin Castro last year in which he will need to make adjustments and improve, but the CubsĀ  may be unwilling to wait on him to do so.

A possible destination for Lake could be with the Seattle Mariners. The Mariners have been looking to add outfield help, specifically a right-handed bat with power. Lake fits the bill and is also young enough that he could make sense for the future as well. A trade of lake could be similar to what the Cubs did with Tyler Colvin a couple years back in which they traded him to the Colorado Rockies to get a change of scenery because he just did not work out with the Cubs. A change of scenery could do Lake wonders as well as rejuvenate him as he would be playing in a pennant race. For the Mariners, they would get a right-handed bat with a power and speed combination that has yet to be harnessed.

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The return for the Cubs may not be a very large or even significant return. The trade of Lake would perhaps just be a move to ensure that Lake gets an opportunity elsewhere as opposed to being sent down to Triple-A. A trade of Lake may be the best option for the Cubs at this point, as they have many other prospects coming through the system that are poised to take the place of Lake sometime in the future. At this point in his career, trading Lake may be the best option.

  • scotirish

    Does anybody remember a guy named Lou Brock?

    • Robert Patreus

      I do, and I met him (a very young Lou Brock) after the last game of 1963 in Milwaukee. Junior Lake is no Lou Brock. Not on the same planet!

      • scotirish

        You are absolutely correct Robert, I wasn’t making that comparison but pointing out that it just might be to soon to part with him yet. McGehee in Florida and Donaldson on Oakland might have been better comparisons of players that were given up on.

  • Thomas

    2nd year in the league, not arbitration eligible until 2017. Not really sure why the argument is being made to trade him. We would be trading him at his lowest value. Isn’t Lake the type of player that the Front Office will give every opportunity to succeed? This article does not make much sense to me. What would they be gaining by trading Lake now? The Colvin trade was slightly different in that the Cubs thought they were recieving a solid young 3B defender LH bat that they needed at the time and could man the hot corner for years to come. It was a 1st rounder for 1st rounder swap, and they also gave up LeMahieu. Lake was a low risk international signing that progressed well through the minors. They should be trading fringe veteran guys such as Sweeney, Ruggiano, Coghlan, Barney…

    • Robert Patreus

      Thomas, I agree with you on Lake. Ship him back to the minors and play him every day. Coughlan, Ruggiano, and Sweeney are starting to perform. As far as Barney is concerned, unload him. He can’t hit. Maybe we pick-up a moderate prospect. We have players in the minors ready to move-up now. Case in point: Addison.

      • clyder

        Addison Russell is no where near ready to join the Cubs. Late 2015 at the absolute earliest.