Chicago Cubs: Will Jorge Soler and Javier Baez remain with the Cubs?
With general managers, team owners, and others gathering at this year’s Winter Meetings, the Chicago Cubs have been tossed around the rumor mill involving five players aside from their own.
Sure, they didn’t land Zack Greinke, David Price or Jordan Zimmermann, but they did, however, find themselves another starting pitcher that has proven to be a workhorse both during the regular and postseason. As you all know by now, that man is John Lackey.
Now, just before I called it a night, I read something about infielder Javier Baez. According to CSN Chicago’s own Patrick Mooney, the Cubs supposedly talked to the Atlanta Braves regarding the 23-year-old and their ace right-hander, Shelby Miller.
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Miller pitched extremely well for the Braves last season but hardly received any run support, which hurt his overall record. Atlanta appears to be in rebuild mode, so it makes sense for them to shop Miller in hopes of landing themselves a young player such as Baez, for instance.
And then you have the Tampa Bay Rays, Maddon’s former club, interested in Baez as well. Of course, Chicago would be looking to pick up a pitcher in return, but the chances of them receiving Chris Archer are pretty slim.
MLB Trade Rumors noted that the Cubs may be interested in either Matt Moore or Alex Cobb. Two young pitchers that could serve as the No. 4 starter in the rotation behind Lackey.
While Theo Epstein, Jed Hoyer, and Joe Maddon visit with the competition to discuss specific topics, Baez is still expecting to get some playing time out in center field. He started a game at second base in Puerto Rico just the other day.
Meanwhile, Maddon spoke out on the possibility of either one of his rising stars being traded and knows that there’s a chance that it could very well happen, but expects them to remain in Chicago.
This club still has a lot to prove this upcoming season after finishing with the third-best record in all of baseball between the St. Louis Cardinals and Pittsburgh Pirates.
They play in the toughest division in the league, so winning the N.L. Central has to be at the top of their list now that they’ve shown the world they could hang with the best of them.
And as for Soler, he’s the team’s best option when it comes to right field. He ran into a couple stints on the disabled list last season but roared back with a spectacular postseason performance against the Cardinals.
All he needs to do is somehow stay healthy, and he’ll be just fine.