Cubs’ Jed Hoyer not going to force off-season moves
With new manager Joe Maddon officially in the back-pockets of the franchise for the next five or so years, the Cubs are slowly putting themselves in a position to contend.
All they need to do is sign a couple big name pitchers while their prospects do the rest and things will be fine, right? Not necessarily.
Yes, the team does have a bunch of money they could spend but it usually isn’t the best idea to blow everything you have in one off-season. This team does look to be piecing themselves together nicely which is very promising to not only the fans of this franchise but the city of Chicago itself.
"“We’re literally linked to every free agent it seems. Some of that is agent driven. They’re trying to connect us to everyone because they realize we have some payroll flexibility.” Jed Hoyer via ESPN Chicago"
Cubs fans have been waiting well over 100 years for a World Series (news alert) and even their odds have increased after Maddon was signed just this past week.
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Now the team has been linked to multiple free agents including Jon Lester, Jake Peavy, and Russell Martin just to name a few. With that being said, Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer mentioned that “we’re (Cubs) not going to force it” in regards to big name free agency pick ups.
"“In general, we’re a little more targeted than we were. I will be very surprised if we weren’t involved with guys early. If something gets done, that’s great.” Jed Hoyer via ESPN Chicago"
It’s obvious that this club is going to get a lot of attention from soon-to-be free agents in the future looking to be a part of history as the team looks to win their first World Series.
Besides starting pitching, the Cubs could definitely use some help in the bullpen – mainly middle or long-relief if possible. The closer role for this team has always been a toss-up considering the ups and downs each player has had when given the opportunity to make the job theirs.
Former closer Carlos Marcos had plenty of ups-and-downs, and led the league in being booed by his own fans. Chicago spent a decent amount of money for both Kyuji Fujikawa and Jose Veras over the last couple of years but they turned out to be duds. Not to mention Edwin Jackson who just so happens to be eating up some of that money they could use towards better talent.
Fujikawa fell to Tommy John surgery and failed to live up to expectations after returning from the disabled list this season – then you have Veras who just flat-out stunk and lost his job.
Both Hector Rondon and Pedro Strop could prove to be two guys who could rotate back-and-forth allowing the front-office to spend money for other spots on the roster.
With all that being said, we can take a quick look at a couple starting pitchers who will become free agents before the 2016 campaign pending any contract extensions. You have guys like Scott Kazmir, Jordan Zimmerman, Chad Billingsley, Yovani Gallardo, Johnny Cueto, Rick Parcello, Mat Latos, Ian Kennedy, and David Price who could end up showing some interest with the Cubs when that time comes.
So don’t worry if Chicago doesn’t go out and spend a whole lot of money on someone who has dominated opposing hitters, because that spender spree will happen sooner or later. It doesn’t matter if it’s this season, next season, or the season after that, this team will one day be stacked with talent from top to bottom.