Samardzija: No Idea A New Offer Was Made
By Bruce Levine–
(CBS) — Pitcher Jeff Samardzija said in a radio interview that he had no idea if a new offer was presented to him or his agent last week.
Samardzija told Jim Bowden and Casey Stern of XM-MLB Radio that he had told his agent he didn’t want any involvement with contract talks during the season. A report that has yet to be confirmed said that Samardzija’s representatives turned down an $85 million offer from the Cubs.
On Wednesday, Samardzija confirmed to 670 The Score that he hasn’t heard about any offer from the team.
“I can’t really comment on it,” Samardzija told XM. “I obviously have an idea where I am at. I told my agent earlier in spring training that this wasn’t going to be a distraction. I really had enough debating arbitration, then the offseason speculation about signing a deal. I was just kind of exhausted talking about the process. My agent understands where we are at, and I put that (contract talks) in their hands.”
Samardzija was offered a $55 million contract in December 2013, according to an industry source. The Cubs have been fielding offers from other clubs who have followed the pitcher as the trading deadline approaches.
Samardzija can be a free agent in November 2015. Any team that acquires the pitcher will have him for the rest of 2014 and all of 2015. It would appear that Samardzija will now wait for the free agent process before signing a long-term contract.
“Come October 1 or whenever the season ends, then I will get more involved with it,” Samardzija said. “As of right now, that is what I pay (my agent) for. My job is to go out and play baseball. Until there is something to be talked about, you are talking to the wrong guy. You would be better off talking to my agent.”
In the XM interview, Samardzija said his goal was to stay with the Cubs.
“I feel like I am in a pretty good situation,” he said. “That has made this whole process a little easier. I know either way the road goes, I will be OK. If it ends up that I get traded, odds are it will be a team that is in the hunt and ready to win now. If I stay, that is great too. I have been here and a part of this rebuilding process. I can be here to see it end, which is really exciting for me. I feel I have put a lot of work in by being a (bridge) between old guys and new guys here. I think that means a lot. I have put a lot of heart and soul into this team. My mind is pretty much at ease because of both situations.”
Samardzija has been a victim of poor run support, as the Cubs have scored an average of three runs per game in his starts. Chicago has scored one run or less in eight of the Samardzija’s starts. Samardzija is 2-6 with a 2.53 ERA, a mark that’s in the top 10 in National League.
Bruce Levine covers the Cubs and White Sox for 670 The Score and CBSChicago.com. Follow him on Twitter @MLBBruceLevine.