Chicago Cubs: Stroman would make the Cubs rotation really solid
You know the famous expression about the guys who toss balls in the Major Leagues: you can never have enough pitching. Heading into a (hopefully) full 162 game schedule after a shortened schedule, this saying will be tested to the nth degree. After a flurry of injuries to arms during the start and stop 2020 campaign, pitchers will be at a premium over the course of an entire season.
One of the best free agent arms in 2020 is a guy who didn’t even pitch this season due to a left calf tear and subsequent opt out due to Covid. Marcus Stroman should be extremely fresh and well-preserved after rehabbing and then saving a ton of bbs for 2021.
Stroman is a guy who has only had one questionable season since he’s been in the league and carries a career 3.76 ERA after playing mostly in the American League East against the formidable Red Sox, Yankees, and Rays. He was also an All-Star the last time he played (in 2019), when he posted a stellar 3.22 ERA while going 10-13 between the Blue Jays and Mets. If Stroman can throw like that in the National League, he would be worth a one, two, or even three year deal as a 29 year old.
The problem is, the diminutive right-hander could make up to four years and $64 million, a number I can’t see the Cubs coming close to. However, if clubs are shying away from a guy who hasn’t pitched in over a year and the market is completely dry for everyone, it’s possible a one year show me deal could be within the Cubs ballpark… just not likely.
While these five guys are extremely unlikely members of the 2021 Cubs despite being huge upgrades for the team, if you stick around long enough, you may get to see the possible diamonds in the rough Theo Esptein and Jed Hoyer come up with on their yearly winter dumpster dive.