Chicago Cubs: A way-too-early look at this winter’s free agent class

(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Cubs
Chicago Cubs /

This year’s free agent class is absolutely loaded with top-tier talent. With so many teams vying for a superstar, will the Chicago Cubs land their guy?

It’s clear. The Chicago Cubs don’t have to sell free agents on what Chicago has to offer – at least, not like they used to. The club landed some major names in recent years – Jon Lester, Ben Zobrist, Jason Heyward – even Brandon Morrow this winter.

Knowing that, this winter could be very exciting.

This list starts with the huge elephant in the room. The rumors are there, the connections are there from multiple places, and he would be a natural fit. Kyle SchwarberAlbert AlmoraBryce Harper outfield with Jason Heyward subbing in for both guys at points. Should the Cubs’ sign Harper, expect Ian Happ to be traded away.

Bryce Harper and Kris Bryant grew up together and played on the same Little League team. Their wives are best friends. Harper is only 26 and is entering the prime of his career. He would provide some thump in between Bryant and Anthony Rizzo.

This comes with a disclaimer, though. Harper’s season this year has not been up to his standards. This season, the numbers may not look great, but he has 19 dingers and a 17.1 percent walk rate. Those are Harper-esque numbers. His current team, the Nationals, are managed by former Cubs’ bench coach Dave Martinez. Maybe Dave can give Bryce some words of encouragement this offseason, huh?