The Cubs, meanwhile, are resisting attempts by Seattle to get Felix Pie and a second prospect for Ibanez. The Cubs almost certainly would be willing to offer a couple of prospects in the Sam Fuld stratum. But teams that have spoken with the Cubs say they've shown little sense of urgency to overpay to add a final piece or two of late.
The team is not close to a deal, major-league sources say, and ultimately might settle for a bench player who would be an upgrade over Daryle Ward, or make no trade at all.
At the moment, the Cubs are set in the outfield with Alfonso Soriano in left, Jim Edmonds and Reed Johnson in center and Kosuke Fukudome in center and right, with center fielder Felix Pie hot at Class AAA.
The addition of Ibanez would force Fukudome to center full-time, leaving the Cubs with below-average defenders, Soriano and Ibanez, in left and right. It also would reduce the playing time of Edmonds and Johnson, both of whom have been productive.
Edmonds, however, remains a physical risk — he has not played since receiving a cortisone shot in his left knee on Sunday. Ibanez, 36, would protect the Cubs against injury, and perhaps even spell Soriano and first baseman Derrek Lee against certain right-handers.
Veteran center fielder Jim Edmonds was a nice pickup when he was plucked off the waiver wire in mid-May, but he looks to be running out of gas at a bad time. His sore left knee kept him out of the lineup again Tuesday. After a strong showing in June (.319, six home runs, 19 RBI), Edmonds has sputtered in July (.231, three homers, nine RBI).
If the Cubs are serious about loading up for what figures to be a grueling two-month final kick into the postseason, they would be better served to thank Edmonds for his contribution, part with some of their young talent and get lefty-swinging Raul Ibanez from the Seattle Mariners.
Ibanez, who has been on the Mets' radar, entered play Tuesday hitting .281 with 15 homers and 62 RBI -- numbers Edmonds no longer can match. Put him in right field and keep Kosuke Fukudome in center, where he played Tuesday.
Uh, please no. Let’s ignore – for one paragraph - the fact that Raul Ibanez is a one-man circus in the outfield, and not the fun kind with ponies but the really crappy kind where the carnies look like they wandered off the set of Freaks. Ladies and gentlemen, your Marcel projections!
And you can stop ignoring his defense now. Ibanez is currently trying to establish himself as Ryan Braun without the range in the outfield. (Make sure you scroll down to the links to the animated GIFs!) He’s currently about as desirable as a kick to the head. By, like, Robbie Gould. After you’d just tried to run him over with a car, so he’s really pissed at you as he’s kicking you in the head. And Brian Urlacher is placeholding you for him.
You want to move Dome to center and get some more left-handed power in the lineup? Move DeRosa into right field and make Fontenot the second baseman. Please, please no Raul Ibanez.