Chicago Cubs: What if the Cardinals went big in free agency this winter?

(Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
(Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Cubs
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Chicago Cubs: Going back to the Cardinals’ 2015-16 offseason

We all know the Cardinals were in on Jason Heyward in the winter of 2015. They reportedly offered Heyward more money. While it seems the Cardinals dodged a bullet considering Heyward hasn’t become the impact bat the Chicago Cubs had hoped for, St. Louis hasn’t exactly found anyone who could replace him offensively or defensively.

Let’s remember Heyward came off a career season in his one year with St. Louis, finishing the season with a .293/.359/.439 slash-line. This is the guy they traded for after their top prospect, Oscar Taveras, was tragically killed in a car accident the winter before 2015.

They had every intention in keeping Heyward and signing him long-term. The Cubs won him over though, and despite his offensive struggles, he did help the team win its first World Series in 108 years and has improved offensively each season he’s been with the club.

Heyward has been a Gold Glove candidate every season as the Cubs right fielder. Meanwhile, the Cardinals led the National League in errors in 2018. Some of their homegrown players like Randal Grichuk and Stephen Piscotty regressed and now are on different teams. The Cardinals major free agency moves that winter consisted of signing Mike Leake. He’s now pitching for the Seattle Mariners.

They were hopeful their young core of outfielders could make up for Heyward’s absence, but we all know what happened in 2016. The Cardinals missed the postseason for the first time in years as the Cubs won the World Series.