Chicago Cubs make big moves in FanSided Faux Winter Offseason
By Jake Misener
Chicago Cubs sign Jon Jay, Rene Rivera, Howie Kendrick to free-agent deals
It’s sometimes easy to forget just how young this Chicago Cubs core is. Most of them are yet to hit the quarter-century mark. With that in mind, I focused on a veteran presence off the bench – picking up two familiar names and one who could be the missing piece to the puzzle.
Jon Jay performed better than any of us expected last season. A good friend of mine and I always called him ‘The Professional Hitter.’ Because that’s exactly what he did. Jay battled on every pitch of every at-bat, making opposing pitchers work. And, after dealing Schwarber, we decided to bring him back as a potential platoon outfielder.
In addition to Jay, veteran Rene Rivera returned on a one-year deal, bridging the gap to Victor Caratini‘s ascent into the backup role in 2019. We felt that with one more year under his belt, the youngster would be better prepared for his future.
The newest acquisition? Veteran utilityman Howie Kendrick comes to the North Side after a .315/.368/.475 slash-line between the Phillies and Nationals. He’s a career .291 hitter and is capable of playing in both the infield and outfield. In short, he’s a Joe Maddon dream addition.
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This was a lot of work – and a lot of fun. Essentially, we see the window at-hand and chose to do what it takes – and spend what it spends – to capitalize on it. This is the golden era of Chicago Cubs baseball and we feel we made the moves to make the most of it.