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Cubs ‘close’ to acquiring Justin Wilson and Alex Avila from Tigers

Jeimer Candelario is part of this deal.

Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images

None of this has been confirmed by the Cubs or Tigers yet, but the Cubs have apparently acquired both of the targets they’d been seeking at the trade deadline: relief help and a veteran backup catcher.

Here are the details we know as of now, from usually reliable sources:

Justin Wilson, a lefthanded reliever, has been closing for the Tigers ever since Francisco Rodriguez stunk things up so much they let him go. Wilson does well against both lefthanders and righthanders, so he’ll be a useful setup guy no matter who’s batting. Wilson is arb-eligible in 2018, so he’s under team control for one more season.

Alex Avila, son of Tigers GM Al Avila (who let him go once before, as a FA to the White Sox) is having the best offensive season of his career, but the Cubs want him mainly for his defense and to provide a veteran presence behind Willson Contreras.

Jeimer Candelario has been a top prospect in the Cubs organization for a while now. But he can really play only third base and first base and so he’s blocked at those positions with the Cubs, meaning his value to the organization is exactly what the team is doing here: trading him for big-league talent.

Isaac Paredes, a shortstop, was signed as an international free agent out of Mexico last year and he is playing at Low-A South Bend this year, hitting .261/.341/.399 with seven home runs in 399 at-bats. He clearly has talent but is at least three, and possibly four, years away from the major leagues. He won’t turn 19 until next February.

I’ll have more on this deal, including what it means for the 40-man and 25-man rosters, when it’s made official and when we have more information, but now that the basic building blocks are out there, I thought I’d put together a post for discussion.

And presuming this deal is official, I think the Cubs are now done dealing pre-deadline.


Sounds like a done deal.

Have at it!


Justin Wilson and Alex Avila!

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