The Tampa Bay Rays have been linked to trade speculation over Chris Archer, but those rumors could intensify, or diminish based on the Rays' recent production. The Rays are tied with the Minnesota Twins for the second wild card spot. If the Rays continue to be in contention for a playoff berth, then Archer could not be moved at all.

Rays have a lot of leverage, but can't make deal now

Think about what kind of statement that would be to the already thinning Rays population. It's the middle of June and you are in the second wild card spot, and then your upper management sends their best player? It would anger what was left of them.

The problem is that the Rays could command their best package at this given moment. Archer was already worth a lot. The Rays could get a Chris Sale-like deal considering their spot in the standings. The starting pitching market is slim which makes Archer even more attractable, especially that he is 28 and under control until 2021. If the Rays don't believe they can maintain contention, then making this Archer trade would benefit the future.

At this point, it's not crazy to believe that the Rays could be buyers at the trade deadline. The Rays have three players in the top thirty in MLB's Top 100 Prospects. The Rays haven't made the playoffs since 2013. Evan Longoria is 31 years old. Logan Morrison and Corey Dickerson are having career years.

The Rays are not full of talent like the Houston Astros, but another solid player could help Tampa fight off teams like the Twins, Angels, Orioles, Royals, and Rangers.

Cubs have made recent gauge

Jeff Passan of CBS Chicago recently wrote the the Cubs would have to part with Eloy Jimenez, the No. 15 ranked prospect in baseball.

Going off of what the Rays should command right now, the Rays can also ask for a player like Javy Baez or Ian Happ too. The Cubs need another starter, but right now the cost would be too high.

The way the Rays are playing right now is a major blow to the Cubs who need a starter. The Cubs have the assets to acquire Archer.

The Cubs are 35-34, and had to deal with Jake Arrieta's injuries.

The Cubs are in an awkward position. The Cubs basically have only two starters going into the next season. Arrieta and Lackey will be free agents. Eddie Butler and Mike Montgomery have not proved they are solid starters. The Cubs have a deep need for a starter that is controllable, but the price might have doubled due to Rays' position in the standings.

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