Garza struggling with Rangers after Cubs trade

Garza struggling with Rangers after Cubs trade
September 12, 2013, 4:15 pm
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Tony Andracki

Every time a big trade goes down in Major League Baseball, everybody is quick to judge which team "won" the trade and which team "lost" the deal.

We're not at that point to declare a clear-cut winner or loser of the Cubs-Rangers Matt Garza trade from July 22.

Honestly, it's still even too soon to determine who came away better off in the January 2011 trade that sent Garza from the Tampa Bay Rays to the Cubs.

But right now, the Cubs are sitting pretty with the prospect haul they acquired from Texas.

C.J. Edwards was just tabbed as a Baseball America Minor League All-Star and helped Class-A Daytona win a championship. Justin Grimm is getting some bullpen time in the majors and third baseman Mike Olt actually started showing signs of life at the end of the season.

Neil Ramirez, the final piece of the deal, threw a scoreless outing his first -- and only -- appearance with Double-A Tennessee and the 24-year-old still carries a first-round pedigree.

[RELATED: After Garza trade, where are they now?]

Meanwhile, Garza is struggling in Texas. After allowing nine baserunners (five hits and four walks) and three runs in four innings Wednesday, the 29-year-old righty ran his record to 3-4 with a 4.46 ERA and 1.23 WIHP in 10 starts with the Rangers.

This comes after going 6-1 for a losing Cubs team with a 3.17 ERA and 1.14 WHIP.

"It's real frustrating," Garza told reporters, including ESPNDallas' Todd Wills. "That's part of my problem -- I may be putting too much pressure on myself, maybe. I don't know. I don't think so."

This isn't what the Rangers envisioned when they gave up four prospects for Garza, but Texas manager Ron Washington wasn't ready to throw the veteran starter under the bus.

"This guy is a good pitcher," Washington said. "Things haven't been going the way we would've like for them to go, totally, but the bottom line is when the pitcher takes the mound, it's his job to keep you in the ballgame.

"Although he hasn't been winning ballgames at a rate you think he will, he's still been keeping us in ballgames."

[RELATED: As Cubs near finish, it looks like Samardzija is wearing down]

Garza will still have three starts to turn things around and the Rangers have a firm hold on the first American League Wild Card spot.

If the Rangers hold on and advance to the postseason -- especially if they win the AL Wild-Card game -- the trade could still pay dividends. Garza is a proven playoff pitcher, having earned the 2008 ALCS MVP with the Rays.