Chicago Cubs ‘miss out’ on David Price: What does it mean?
With the Red Sox signing of David Price, two of the marquee free agent pitchers are off the market. What does it mean for the Chicago Cubs offseason plans?
Late Tuesday afternoon, The Boston Globe, citing a source, reported that free agent starting pitcher David Price will sign with the Boston Red Sox. Price, 31 years old, reached an agreement on a seven-year, $217 million deal.
The contract will be a record for a pitcher in MLB history and is fully guaranteed, paying Price $31 million annually. The Chicago Cubs reportedly had interest in Price before he made his final decision, as the Cubs are expected to spend big in free agency this winter.
While Cubs fans may be disappointed Price will not be coming to the North Side, there are many positives that come from his decision.
First, paying a starting pitcher on the wrong side of 30 is not the wisest decision, especially for a team like the Cubs who should be contenders for years to come. While it is true the Cubs need to add starting pitching, putting all of their eggs into one basket is not the best way to spend money this offseason.
In addition to the money it would have cost the Cubs to sign Price, he has not been very successful during his career come postseason time. Price is a subpar 2-7 with a 5.12 ERA for his career in playoff games. Cubs’ fans have longed for a championship for generations. Would Price’s struggles in October follow him to Chicago?
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I am not speculating that Price will never be the dominant pitcher during the playoffs that he has been during the regular season. The point here is that any player getting paid that much money needs to live up to the contract come playoff time. If Price’s struggles continued, how would Cubs’ fans feel about his signing then?
In addition to his contract, by losing out on Price, the Cubs can now focus their money on several impact players opposed to just one. With the money the team has, could they possibly sign several starting pitchers? Notable free agents available include John Lackey, Johnny Cueto, Jeff Samardzija, Scott Kazmir, Mike Leake, Cliff Lee, and Tim Lincecum.
It is safe to say that those mentioned all would come at lesser salaries than Price. The Cubs also have a deep pool of talented position players that could be dealt for a young, cost-controlled starting pitcher. The team has been linked to starting pitchers Tyson Ross of the San Diego Padres and Shelby Miller of the Atlanta Braves.
Furthermore, because they did not sign Price, the Cubs can now use their money to other areas of need. Could Dexter Fowler be re-signed now that the money will not all go to Price? Could the team add Ben Zobrist to replace Starlin Castro, thus upgrading its defense at second base and contact hitting? The options go on and on.
Next: Cubs could miss out on key free agents
All in all, losing out on Price might be disappointing right now, but come next season, Cubs’ fans will be happy they missed out on the stud left-hander. Expect the Cubs to sign multiple players who will be just as impactful, if not more, than Price ever would have been in Chicago.