We've seen a couple of reports stream about the Chicago Cubs and Shin-Soo Choo. Patrick Mooney is saying that the Cubs are likely to pursue the veteran outfielder in the offseason:
The Cubs will be looking to add a left-handed hitter and upgrade their team's on-base percentage this winter, issues that could be simultaneously addressed by signing Shin-Soo Choo. The Cubs are expected to "make a run" at signing Choo in the offseason, industry sources tell CSNChicago.com's Patrick Mooney.
A few things;
Choo will be on the wrong side of 30 when he signs his next contract. He has valuable secondary skills that should allow him to hold his value a bit longer but this signing, should it happen, would be an interesting move by an organization that is in the midst of a rebuild.
The Cubs do not have a player on the roster with Choo's skill set and it's debateable whether they have a player like Choo in the organization at all. He gets on base a lot, predominantly with the HBP but he also draws his fair share of walks. Choo walks 11.9% of the time and this year he's upped that rate to 14.6%.
Choo also supplies occasional power and has decent bat to ball skills (career slash line of .288/.387/.464). He's miscast as a centerfielder but Choo can be a fine defensive rightfielder on a contending team.
It's possible that the Cubs could be trying to sign Choo in order to trade him at next year's deadline. We've seen teams find themselves in need of an outfielder a lot this year and Choo would be a valuable commodity at the deadline for a team in need.
This could also be a Jayson Werth type signing. It is possible that the Cubs may want to hold on to Choo as he would be the lone veteran on a young, hopefully up and coming club. A lot of the leadership stuff is dismissed by certain members of the baseball blogging community at large (love for the leadership does go over the top from time to time) but I do think it's important to have a veteran presence on a young team.
Chicago will be a very young team heading into next year. If they sign Choo, it might be for keeps.