Chicago Cubs: With Giancarlo Stanton deal done, Cubs can move on to real needs
All signs point to Giancarlo Stanton being traded to the New York Yankees. While the Chicago Cubs were on his list, it was never really a feasible option.
Well. That didn’t take long. After announcing the teams he would waive his no-trade clause for, word is Giancarlo Stanton is headed to the New York Yankees. Reports as of this morning state a deal as been reached, pending his approval. And, while the Chicago Cubs were an option for him, it wasn’t for the team.
Let’s not be fooled by thinking it was. While it would be great to add a lethal bat in the lineup, the Cubs do not currently hold the pieces to add Stanton and the other positions they must fill. According to Joel Sherman, the Marlins will receive former Cubs infielder Starlin Castro and lower-level prospects for the reigning NL MVP.
Chicago lacked the pieces to make such a deal. You can’t include Jason Heyward because Miami’s sole concern is shedding payroll, not swapping contracts. You’d have to think something along the lines of Ian Happ or Albert Almora. After the Cubs used top prospects the last two years at the deadline, the farm is a bit thin.
Yankees did Cubs a solid by adding Stanton
With Stanton deal being finalized and Shohei Ohtani signing with the Los Angeles Angels, the Cubs can move on with their offseason. The addition of Tyler Chatwood is good for the rotation, but another piece there seems likely.
Certainly, Mike Montgomery is an option for the rotation, but depth never hurt anyone. Montgomery has the pitching arsenal for a rotation spot, and his numbers there last season were not horrible. In 14 starts, he went 5-5 with a 4.15 ERA. Still, Joe Maddon clearly prefers Monty in a swing role, where he’s been so valuable.
There are needs on this roster. Mostly pitching. Jake Arrieta, John Lackey, Wade Davis and Hector Rondon are, for all intents and purposes, gone. Carl Edwards is not ready to close games yet. Can the Cubs land the likes of Brandon Morrow? Or Addison Reed?
This is the year for quality relief pitching on the market. It would do the Cubs well to add three names to their pen.
Then, there is the rotation. Earlier this offseason, Theo Epstein said he would be willing to trade players on the Major League roster for pitching. With the quality players on the roster, a bigger name could be added. Still, a free agent, such as Alex Cobb, should be prudently investigated. Or even Chris Tillman.
Next: Chicago Cubs might have a real weapon on their hands in Tyler Chatwood
And, I would advise the Cubs to chase down Alex Avila again. When the team needed him last year, he filled in really well and did what needed to be done. With Winter Meetings just days away, the Hot Stove is white-hot. What moves lie in-store for the North Siders?