Cubs: 3 big starting pitching trade targets – #1: Shohei Ohtani
It’s time to address the elephant in the room. Given this week’s report of his unhappiness with the Angels’ performance this year, could the Cubs pull off a trade for Shohei Othani? How truly willing the Angels are to move their once-in-a-lifetime talent remains to be seen. However, one thing is for sure, if he is made available, the Cubs needs to be the first in line to get on the phone and work out a deal. The needs Ohtani addresses for the Cubs are too great to pass up, even if he does come with an astronomical asking price.
Not only does Ohtani give the Cubs their sorely-needed ace and a power bat, but more specifically, he’s a left-handed power bat – something the team is known to be seeking, as well. Ohtani hit .273/.356/.519 to go along with 34 home runs and 95 RBI this season.
On the mound, the right-hander finished with a sparking 2.33 ERA over 166 IP, notching 209 punchouts and a league-best 11.9 K/9. Due to his two-way ability, Ohtani is the most valuable player in baseball. If he is made available, there will be a long list of teams calling to inquire how much it could cost to acquire his services.
The idea of the Cubs landing Ohtani via trade, signing a key shortstop and perhaps a Jose Abreu on a cheap two-year deal with a third-year club option is enough to put the Cubs on top of the NL Central. You’re looking at adding an ace and a trio of impact bats in just three players. This, of course, is the most aggressive approach the Cubs could take this winter, but it’s one that more than likely sees them making a solid run in October next year.