- Bruce Levine, Chicago baseball beat reporter
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Cubs GM Jim Hendry met with Carlos Zambrano's agent Barry Praver for a 30-minute session on Wednesday.
"I can tell you that Carlos has not asked to be traded and the Cubs haven't asked us to waive his no-trade clause," Praver said after the Wednesday afternoon meeting.
The two sides did talk about Zambrano, however trading him never came up in the conversation. Part of the meeting was for Praver to talk about closer Carlos Marmol, whom he also represents. Marmol is eligible for salary arbitration again in 2011. Marmol made $2.1 million in his first year of arbitration and will get a hefty raise somewhere between $4 million-$5 million this time.
At some point the Cubs will want to talk to Praver about a long-term deal for Marmol, who will be eligible to become a free agent after 2012.
Hendry has had numerous meetings with representatives for free agents and has talked to other teams about trade possibilities. The Cubs and Texas Rangers were scheduled to get together to talk about possible matchups. Texas has a need for catching and the Cubs have two solid young catchers in Welington Castillo and Robinson Chirinos. Texas has an abundance of good hitting in their organization and they have excess at first base, a position where the Cubs have a need.
Left-handed hitting Chris Davis is a home-run hitter who turns 25 in March. Davis only played 45 games for the Rangers in 2010. However, in 2008 and 2009 combined he hit 37 home runs in 193 games. The Cubs could make Davis their everyday first baseman and put the money they have available this offseason toward starting pitching and the bullpen.
"This year we obviously need a first baseman for sure," Hendry said. "But there is a large group of free agents and there are trade possibilities as well. I think there is going to be more volume at that position than what people need at that position."
The Cubs have not talked to the agents for Adam Dunn. However, they expect to talk to them at some point soon. Dunn is still the center of attention for the Chicago White Sox. But on Wednesday the Detroit Tigers were said to be ready to throw big money at Dunn, whose bidding begins at three years and $40 million.
The White Sox are serious bidders in the Dunn derby. GM Kenny Williams tried to trade for Dunn before the July 31 trading deadline. The White Sox should have the resources to sign Dunn, especially if they don't bring back Paul Konerko and A.J. Pierzynski. Williams told Japanese media members in Orlando on Tuesday that the Sox are interested in Hideki Matsui, the former Yankee and Angel slugger.
The White Sox made a run at Matsui last year at this time before he signed with the Angels.
On Wednesday ESPN.com Jayson Stark reported the White Sox and Philadelphia Phillies have been talking about a trade that would send Carlos Quentin to Philadelphia. A White Sox source told ESPNChicago.com that the Sox are not shopping Quentin at this time.
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