Cubs ship pitchers Jeff Samardzija, Jason Hammel to A’s

Fitzgerald Cecilio – 4E Sports Reporter

Chicago, IL, United States (4E Sports) – The Chicago Cubs have shipped starting pitchers Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel to the Oakland Athletics for four players.

From the trade, the Cubs acquired 2012 first-round pick Addison Russell, 2013 first-round pick Billy McKinney, pitcher Dan Straily and a player to be named later.

The 29-year-old Samardzija is 2-7 with a 2.83 ERA this season while the 31-year-old Hammel is 7-5 with a 2.98 ERA.

Hammel, who led the Cubs to a 7-5 win over the Washington Nationals Friday, is set to become a free agent after this season, while Samardzija has one more year of arbitration before becoming a free agent.

Drafted by the Cubs in the fifth round in 2006, Samardzija wanted a contract extension with the team but never got close to inking a deal. He wants to be paid full market value while the Cubs offered him a 5-year, $85 million deal that he rejected.

One of the top prospects in the league, the 20-year-old Russell has appeared in only 18 games at shortstop this season due to a hamstring strain, hitting .333 in 58 at-bats at Double-A Midland.

McKinney, 19, has a .241 batting average with 10 home runs and 33 RBIs in 75 games for Class A Stockton this year while the 25-year-old Straily is 1-2 with a 4.93 ERA in seven starts for the A’s.

The Cubs are in last place in the NL Central at 38-46 while the Athletics currently have the best record in the major leagues at 53-33.

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