"The odds are very slim that I would (sign a long-term deal if I got traded). For any professional player two years out of free agency, the odds they sign a deal are pretty slim," Samardzija told reporters recently.
Samardzija has been the subject of many trade rumors this offseason as the Cubs make an effort to continue restocking their minor league system in the midst of a rebuilding phase. The Orioles, Blue Jays and Diamondbacks have been among those said to be most interested in acquiring the starter.
The Cubs may not be particularly pleased about Samardzija's comments to reporters. If potential trade partners had been hoping to work out a long-term deal with the righty, they may now be inclined to offer less than they otherwise would. There is a possibility trade talks could then be derailed completely.
While embroiled in trade talks, Chicago has also been discussing a potential extension of their own with Samardzija. For now, nothing appears close on that front as the two sides can't agree on financials. For his part, Samardzija has stated a desire to stay with Chicago moving forward. He has not seen many winning seasons in Chicago and would like to be around for the teams eventual resurgence.
Samardzija, 29, moved to a starting role full-time in 2012 after spending his first few years in the bullpen. A hard thrower, he posted a 4.34 ERA and 1.35 WHIP in 2013 while striking out 214 batters over 213⅔ innings. Some perceive his talent to be ace-quality, though thus far in his career he appears to be a good, durable middle-of-the-rotation pitcher for a contender.
Samardzija still has two years of team control remaining, making him an attractive trade candidate. It appears those two years may be all a team acquiring him would get, however.