Cubs Rumors: Hand represents the cream of the crop to many
Personally, I’ve been a Brad Hand guy – well, for some time. Of all the lefties out there Chicago could conceivably go after, this is the one I want coming out of the Wrigley Field bullpen come October with Cody Bellinger at the dish and the game on the line.
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In Cleveland this year, the veteran southpaw has finished a league-leading 30 contests, notching 19 saves entering play Thursday. He’s put up a minuscule 0.91 ERA and 1.63 FIP across 29 2/3 innings of work – and he’s limited left-handed hitters to .332 OPS.
You also have to like that Hand comes with control. He’s locked up through 2020 with a team option for 2021 – giving you an impact southpaw through the rest of the Cubs’ current window.
But he won’t come cheap. Cleveland, like San Francisco, has needs – and could demand the likes of Ian Happ, Albert Almora and more (including top prospects) in exchange for their closer, especially given the layout of the market.
It would hurt giving up such a package – but the Cubs really have one glaring need as currently made up – a shutdown lefty. Expect Epstein to pull the trigger to address that hole, much as he did with the Craig Kimbrel signing earlier this month and set the team up for another shot at a championship.