Chicago Cubs: 3 viable free agent starting pitchers to target

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Chicago Cubs: 3 starters to target – #1: Marcus Stroman

Marcus Stroman is another player that not only should be on the Cubs’ wish list, he is one that has openly talked about joining the Cubs in free agency. Stroman is coming off a remarkable 2021 season in which he pitched to the tune of a 3.02 ERA as a member of the New York Mets.

As has been the case in recent years, he marks another Mets hurler who posted a negative win-loss record, but you can’t really hold that against the guy. New York, after all, averaged a mere 3.93 runs per game this year, landing in the bottom five of the league in offensive production. For perspective, glance back to Jacobs deGrom’s 2018 campaign where we won the National League Cy Young after posting a league-leading 1.70 ERA but went just 10-9 in the win-loss category.

Given the Cubs’ rotation woes in 2021, an arm that can post a solid 3.00 ERA is something that is of desperate importance. Kyle Hendricks, who is looked at as the team’s current ace, even posted a below average 4.77 ERA  and even worse 4.89 FIP in 2021. That mark is the worst of Hendricks’ career by a rather large margin after his second worst mark of a 3.95 ERA in 2015.

A one-time All-Star, Stroman’s consistency brings a huge breath of fresh air. Stroman is an innings eater who has reached the 200-inning mark twice in his career. This season, he made 33 starts which led all of MLB. After earning $18.9 million in 2021, it is safe to assume he’ll be one of the biggest earners in the free agent pitching market this winter.

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Though the Chicago Cubs have the resources to afford him, it would be nice if they can snag two of the names on this list to go along with Hendricks and the newly acquired Miley. You then have four guys who can post above average marks that help relaunch you into potential postseason conversations.