I don't know if there's enough to stoke the hot stove, but as we approach the holidays, there's plenty of smoke. The Cubs aren't done fixing their team but any future major moves will center around dealing two short term players, Alfonso Soriano and Carlos Marmol, and possibly a 3rd player in Matt Garza. Nothing cooking with the Cubs, but there is stuff happening around the league that may impact their offseason.
As far as other needs on the roster, the Cubs could use a bullpen arm, preferably LH, a RH 3B/utility infielder, and perhaps an everyday CF'er.
Since I won't be around the 24th and 25th, I'll keep this thread going until the 26th...just in case something happens. I'll try and keep an eye on things in between festivities...
- 11:10 AM: Nick Swisher will sign with the Cleveland Indians. It certainly didn't seem like Swisher's first choice but there just wasn't enough teams out willing or able to commit the payroll space + the draft pick. In case you're wondering about the Cubs, Jason McLeod is very excited not just about the Cubs #2 overall pick, but their 2nd rounder as well which, because of less comp free agents, will the equivalent of a 1st round supplemental pick in years past. The Cubs were not in on Swisher and I don't expect them to be on any FAs that are tied to a draft pick. That likely rules out guys like Michael Bourn and Kyle Loshe. Of course, the other way this impacts the Cubs is that it thins out the OF market even more.
- 3:26 PM (12/22): Bowden is now tweeting that hard-throwing pitching prospect Stolmy Pimentel is also in the deal. He ranked as Boston's #22 prospect heading into the season.
- 3:04 PM (12/22): Jim Bowden is tweeting that Jerry Sands is involved in the deal for Pirates closer Joel Hanrahan. Sands is a good hitting corner OF'er with some athleticism. Sands was the #6 Dodgers prospect in 2011 and was acquired by the Red Sox as part of the large trade that sent Josh Beckett and Adrian Gonzalez to the Dodgers. Meanwhile, Jon Heyman says that Red Sox #12 prospect SS Jose Iglesias is not part of the deal, though there are multiple players involved. Again, this deal could be a model for a potential Carlos Marmol deal.
- 1:35 PM (12/22): Buster Olney tweets that the Diamondbacks are indeed trying to trade an OF'er and that Jason Kubel is the most likely candidate. As many of you already know, I like Gerald Parra as a possible fit for the Cubs. Another OF, A.J. Pollock, was a guy the old regime liked in the draft. Perhaps he's still a low cost option
- 1:30 PM (12/22): Jason Catania of ESPN (insider only) speculates that the Cubs new found rotation depth may have them considering a deal involving a pitcher, likely Matt Garza. He also believes the Cubs next move may be dealing Alfonso Soriano and/or adding an outfielder.
- 1:22 PM (12/22): The Boston Red Sox are reportedly closing in on a deal for closer Joel Hanrahan, who is similar in many ways to Carlos Marmol, so we'll get an idea as to current market value here. Last year the Red Sox made an ill-fated deal to send OF Josh Reddick to the A's for closer Andrew Bailey. Now they had to fill a vacant OF spot with the more expensive, yet less productive Shane Victorino and appear poised to give up another prospect or young player to land Hanrahan.
- 1:13 PM (12/22): The Arizona Diamondbacks have surprised everyone by beating everyone to OF Cody Ross. They won the derby by giving him 3 years and $26M, the kind of long term security he has been looking for in his career. It also helps that he makes his home in Arizona. The signing is understandably leading to speculation about what the D'Backs plan to do to release that log jam they have in the OF again. Justin Upton had been rumored often earlier in the postseason but now it's Jason Kubel's name that has been surfacing. To me, the Rangers would seem like a good fit for Kubel. Ross off the market also means one less name on the market and it could draw attention to Alfonso Soriano. The Cubs seem content to let things play out as options dwindle and Soriano reduced price and recent production make him look more and more attractive. The Phillies, Yankees, and Rays all appear to be possible suitors for Soriano. Though as reader 44 slug mentioned, the team that is in most dire need of a RH power bat is the Chicago Cubs, so there is no reason to just give him away.
- 1:00 PM (12/22): The Mariners are said to have serious interest in Raul Ibanez. The 40 year old hit .240/.309/.453 with 19 HRs last year. The Mariners have been looking for bats to jump start a sputtering offense and recently traded for Kendry Morales. I'm not sure how they plan to fit Morales, Ibanez, and Jesus Montero together in the same lineup. All seem better off being DHs.
Filed under: Rumors/Speculation