As the Chicago Cubs head into the offseason off a sweep in the NLCS and a 97 win regular season, we all know that Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer want to make this winter another successful offseason, but there are so many possibilities of what the Cubs will do. I have pondered this for quite a while and down below are the absolute most important questions Cubs fans everywhere are asking.
Question #1: Who Will Be The Cubs Center Fielder? With Dexter Fowler in center field this past season, the Cubs had a reliable, talented and healthy go-to option at center field and to bat leadoff. His contract expired at the end of this season, and reports are showing he may not return. With that in mind, the Cubs need to acquire someone with similar traits to fill that gap. Someone the Cubs could definitely use is Jason Heyward, who is known for being great defensively as well as a solid hitter. The 26 year old finished the season with 13 round trippers, 60 RBI’s, and most importantly for a leadoff man was his well above average .359 OBP. Another potential acquisition the Cubs could go after is veteran Denard Span, another solid leadoff hitter who could prove a nice fit. Since we are very early in the offseason process, we’ll have to wait and see what happens for the Cubs in terms of the center field position.
Question #2: Will Baez or Castro Be Wearing Cubs Uniforms Next Season? As much as I hate to say it, we may see Baez or Castro end up playing in a different uniform next season. The Cubs may look to trade one of these guys for a starting pitcher seeing as they don’t need two mediocre players at second with Castro or Baez filling in for Russell. Now may be as good of a time as any to deal one or both of the two for a solid reliever. Rumor has it, the Cubs are in trade talks with their crosstown rivals on the subject of starting pitcher José Quintana. Quintana could fit very well into to the Cubs rotation seeing as we need another high quality lefty, especially if the Cubs are unable to acquire David Price. The Mets have also looked at potentially trading a starting pitcher for one of our middle infielders.
Question #3: How Many New Pitchers Will the Cubs Acquire? This offseason many big name pitchers’ contracts are expiring. From Tim Lincecum to Johnny Cueto, we all know that the Cubs would ideally like to reunite David Price and Joe Maddon, but another question is who else new will be in the rotation. A potential suitor is former Washington National Jordan Zimmerman. The Wisconsin native finished the season with a solid 3.66 ERA, a 13-10 record, and 201 innings pitched. Zimmerman could be a great fit into the bullpen if the Cubs could acquire him at the right price. Another option could be Zack Greinke. The 2009 Cy Young winner and now a candidate for the Cy Young this year would make the rotation absolutely unstoppable.
Question #4: Will We See Any Blockbuster Trades? We have not only heard rumors in terms of free agency. Trade rumors have been circling as well. The Cubs may go after a big name pitcher in a trade like Chris Archer or Tyson Ross. The Cubs would have to give these teams a good offer but that doesn't mean that the Cubs won’t work hard to get one of those two guys. The Schwarber trade rumors seem to be dying down, but stay aware because these offers could always resurface. I can’t wait to see what happens but like I said earlier we’re going to have to wait and see.
This offseason will be very interesting and let’s hope the Cubbies can come out winners. We will just have to wait until opening day to see who will be out there. Epstein will make a great team even better and ideally the Cubs will end their 107 year drought.