A new day dawns at the Winter Meetings with Cubs still in play for Shohei Ohtani

After Tuesday brought multiple conflicting reports regarding Chicago's chances for the game's premier free agent, hope lingers on as the week wears on.

Aug 29, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Los Angeles Angels designated hitter Shohei Ohtani
Aug 29, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Los Angeles Angels designated hitter Shohei Ohtani / Kyle Ross-USA TODAY Sports

While the first half of the week was light on major news from the MLB Winter Meetings, Tuesday wasn't without its fair share of drama - especially for Cubs fans, who were repeatedly jerked around by conflicting reports over the team's chance to sign two-way superstar free agent Shohei Ohtani.

First, the Cubs were definitely out of the running for the reigning AL MVP. Then, our white knight, president of baseball operations, showed up in Nashville and reportedly gave Bob Nightengale a dressing down before refuting his earlier report saying Chicago was out on Ohtani.

A day full of Bob Nightengale contradicting himself when it came to the Cubs

Unsurprisingly, that wasn't the only time on Tuesday Nightengale wound up with his foot in his mouth. After singling out Christopher Morel as a name that's 'surfaced' in talks with the Rays for Tyler Glasnow, Nightengale backtracked furiously a few hours later, saying the Cubs definitely wouldn't give up Morel for a one-year rental.

The Glasnow situation shouldn't be dictated by the Ohtani outcome given the latter won't pitch in 2024 - but Hoyer didn't seem to feel either outcome was particularly close to reaching a conclusion when he spoke to reporters.

Shortly before I called it a night, though, Patrick Mooney suggested Hoyer and the Cubs front office were pivoting to other courses of action regardless of what Ohtani decided, a prudent move for a team that certainly can't afford to stake the outcome of its entire offseason on one player.

Rhys Hoskins was once again connected to the Cubs on Tuesday, along with Glasnow and multi-Gold Glover Matt Chapman. The big takeaway to this point in the Winter Meetings is failing to sign Ohtani absolutely does not preclude Chicago from having a successful offseason - and given the mood at times yesterday, that bears repeating.