The offseason for the Chicago Cubs has been incredibly mundane to this part. That is because all eyes are on Shohei Ohtani, who the team is trying to land with a record-breaking contract. Still, more reports have indicated that Ohtani may be farther away from signing than we initially thought, further drawing out the process of the Cubs signing players.
Offensively, what is the best plan for the Cubs to acquire another critical bat in the lineup? In 2023, the Cubs boasted a top-five offense in the National League, but a big part of that production came from Cody Bellinger, who is not only a free agent but not expected to sign anytime soon. The Cubs can't sit idly by hoping Bellinger falls in their lap. There are, however, other targets that Jed Hoyer can swiftly pivot towards to ensure their offense remains intact. Here are three hitters the Cubs can target if they miss on Ohtani.
3 hitters to target if the Cubs miss on Ohtani - 3. Rhys Hoskins
Rhys Hoskins missed 2023 with a torn ACL. His career has had some ups and downs, but he is a prolific power threat. Eclipsing the 30-home-run plateau twice, Hoskins owns a career .250 ISO. His lifetime slash sits at .242/.353/.492, and he has recorded north of 80 RBIs three times. Hoskins will strike out like any slugger, but he also gets on base at a solid clip, with a 13.5% career walk rate.
Hoskins is a fine addition to the roster. Once the Phillies told Hoskins that Bryce Harper would be their new everyday first baseman, we learned the Cubs were interested in Hoskins. With first base being a position of need, and the fact that Hoskins is coming off a severe injury, Hoskins' name is one I expect the Cubs to get connected to more and more, whether or not they land Ohtani this winter. He's a good fit, and the Cubs need the power.