Will Epstein pull the trigger on one, both or neither?
Before the Cubs won the World Series, the front office talked about how they were building a team that could contend for years to come. Winning the World Series was the start. But a slow beginning to the 2017 season had some people wondering if this was more of a “one and done” and not a dynasty. It’s been just eight games so far, but the start has reignited the belief that this very well could be a dynasty. The Cubs felt they had the pieces “already in the clubhouse” to win; they just needed to perform. Quintana was a significant addition, but this hasn’t been all because of him.
It’s all about the next nine days
This stretch combined with the next nine days could be the deciding factor. The Cubs have already taken it from 5 1/2 games down to just a one game gap. There are other possibilities the Cubs could examine. Sonny Gray‘s name is still out there. But he would come at an even higher cost than these two. And while there are “sources” that believe these will happen, I’ll believe it when I see it. The Quintana deal caught many of us by surprise, mostly because it was with the White Sox.
I’m leery of saying that the Cubs could pull off both of these deals. But there is still talent in the Cubs farm system. Would the Cubs want to “empty” it for these two? My belief lies in the Cubs scouting. Five years ago, I thought we had to have a top 10 pick to have success. But that isn’t the case. The Cubs have shown to be more than adequate at scouting players. I believe they can rebuild the farm WHILE being a contender from year to year.
That being said, I only see them pulling one more “big” move off if they continue this streak of winning baseball. With the return of Kyle Hendricks this week, I would see Britton as being the more likely of the two. While the injury will put the screws to the Cubs medical staff, it looks more about rust than his physical state. The heavy workload on the bullpen seems to have taken its toll. With the starters beginning to pick it up, the pen is where the Cubs will look to improve.