Cubs Rumors: Would a veteran outfielder boost the roster?
Brantley, 31, had his best season since 2015 after being hit with the injury bug the last two seasons, finishing with a 124 wRC+, just one point less than Zobrist. He slashed .309/.346/.468 for the Indians in 143 games, which was the most he played since 2014.
Markakis, 35, played in all 162 games, made the All-Star team for the first time and had a slash line of .297/.366/.440. His 2.6 WAR was his highest since 2010 in Baltimore.
If they were to trade Zobrist, they could potentially get one of those players and more. Sharma suggests trading for Kansas City Royals infielder Whit Merrifield or Philadelphia Phillies infielder Cesár Hernández to fill their need at either second base or shortstop, depending on where Javy Baez is playing that given day.
These moves aren’t flashy and sexy like Manny Machado or Harper but maybe the Cubs don’t need to make that kind of move. After all, they did just win 95 games. A healthy Yu Darvish and Kris Bryant are set to be ready for Spring Training, so maybe retooling quietly isn’t the worst idea. That said, Harper would drastically change the outlook of the Cubs and their chances at reaching the World Series in 2019.