I don't want to read too much into this but, there's an article in the Chicago Tribune that suggests that the Cubs might non-tender Chad Gaudin and mentions a "mysterious" back injury which occurred off the field in September. While I have no information on the injury, I have to take some notice of this assuming, for the sake of discussion, that it's not anything major.
The column mentions the fact that the Cubs have bullpen issues, particularly from the left side. What if, then, we dealt them Jason Frasor and Brian Tallet for Gaudin?
They get a solid lefty and an underrated right-hander and we get a guy who can provide another candidate to start.
The great value for us in Gaudin is that he can do both things fairly well, so he can start in the absence of a better option, and then should McGowan recover, or should Cecil, Romero, Janssen, or even Richmond force the issue, he can relieve just as well for us as Frasor did.
And the difference in Gaudin's projected salary and the combined salaries of Tallet and Frasor would be under a million. I'm sure some of you will go look at his stats and see his outrageous 6+ ERA while in Chicago - but look deeper. If you check his gamelog 10 of the 19 earned runs he allowed occurred in only two appearances. For the rest of his work with the Cubs his ERA was 3.24 and his BB:K ration was 7:26.
Now, maybe the writer speculates out of turn and there's no chance Gaudin would be non-tendered...but if it's even remotely possible, then perhaps he's available. After all, the Cubs have some seven pitchers, if not more, in front of him as a starter - that's a waste to stick him in the pen when you can turn him into something you need.
And hey, JP already acquired him once so clearly he's familiar with the guy (and sadly gave him away to Oakland too but that, my friends, is the mistake he might have a chance to fix).