MLB Trade Rumors: Red-Hot Jack Flaherty Linked to Surprising Team

In 2019, Jack Flaherty was as good as any pitcher in baseball. In the second half of that season with the St. Louis Cardinals, he had a 0.91 ERA and a 0.71 WHIP while holding batters to a .142 average.

The past few seasons haven't been as kind to Flaherty due to injury and poor performance. But on a one-year contract with the Detroit Tigers this season, he is back to being one of the most dominant starters in the game. The 28-year-old has a 2.92 ERA with a 0.97 WHIP and a 108:13 strikeout-to-walk ratio over 83.1 innings. 

With the Tigers not showing much hope of being a playoff contender, a trade of Flaherty heading up to next month's trade deadline could be a real possibility. And he will be in serious demand from some teams who could really use a boost to their rotation heading down the stretch.

But we're hearing now that a surprising team will be in on the bidding. 

The Chicago Cubs, despite struggling most of this season, are still within striking distance of a playoff spot in the National League, so it's not surprising that they'll be looking to upgrade. But starting pitching happens to be the one area of the game that they don't really need help in.

Insider Robert Murray of Fansided explains:

While it's all good and well for Chicago to pursue upgrades at the deadline, the front office needs to make the right upgrades. The Cubs' milquetoast offense needs a considerable boost, and the bullpen — ranked 24th in relief ERA this season — needs more firepower.

Their starting rotation was doing just fine until a couple of recent hiccups, from both Javier Assad and Rookie of the Year frontrunner Shota Imanaga. But it's still a relative strength for the team. 

From all accounts, the Cubs will be in on every big hitter who will be on the trade market. And now, one of the biggest arms as well. 

They have the quality farm system to be able to offer the Tigers something of interest, and in addition, there's a key relationship between the two teams as Detroit president of baseball operations Scott Harris spent seven seasons working under Jed Hoyer in Chicago's front office.

Photo: © Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports