3 starting pitchers the Chicago Cubs should target in 2024

Philadelphia Phillies v New York Mets - Game One
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The Chicago Cubs have a lot of starting pitching depth that begins at the Big League level and continues well into their minor league system. However, the one thing they lack is a clear ace-level starting pitcher to solidify their rotation. During their last playoff window, there were multiple pitchers that filled this role on the North Side. Jake Arrieta was in Cy Young form, Jon Lester had some of the best years of his career and Kyle Hendricks nabbed himself an ERA title.

But now, the bottom-heavy starting rotation could use one of those trustworthy aces to put the team in a better position for a deep playoff run. Even if guys like Hayden Wesneski and Justin Steele take big steps forward, it would be comforting to have an experienced workhorse on staff. Here are some options that the Cubs could entertain during next year's potent starting pitching market.

Shohei Ohtani
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3 starting pitchers the Chicago Cubs should target: Shohei Ohtani

Ok, I'm going to get this out of the way, Ohtani is on this list because every team should at least consider signing him. I don't think this is a serious possibility for the Cubs though because Jed Hoyer has been relatively gun-shy when it comes to giving out huge contracts. Yes, he just gave Dansby Swanson the second-largest contract in team history, but Shohei Ohtani is an entirely different animal. This is the type of player who will likely demand the largest contract in MLB history, which will be close to if not a $500 million deal. Jed Hoyer is not the type of GM, and Tom Ricketts is frankly not the type of owner, to push in the chips and dish out that much cash on one player.

Nor do I want them to gamble that much. Ohtani is an amazing player, and I consider myself lucky to live in a time where I get to see a man simultaneously pitch and hit at an extremely high level. But, I can never shake the feeling that all the stress he puts on his body will result in a serious injury at some point. Taking everything into account, I don't think Shohei Ohtani will be a Chicago Cub, no matter how good he would look in those pinstripes.