Chicago Cubs News: Lineup projections, International signings, and more

Aug 31, 2022; Arlington, Texas, USA; Houston Astros first baseman Trey Mancini (26) connects on an
Aug 31, 2022; Arlington, Texas, USA; Houston Astros first baseman Trey Mancini (26) connects on an / Raymond Carlin III-USA TODAY Sports

The signing of free-agent first baseman Trey Mancini to a two-year deal over the weekend has provided much-needed respectability to the Cubs' lineup as they enter the 2023 Major League Baseball regular season.

At the very least, the Chicago Cubs have a lineup that the team does need to sell fans on the idea of hope. Entering the 2022 Major League Baseball regular season, the Cubs were hoping that Frank Scwhindel could continue his unlikely success as the team's first baseman, and ditto for Rafael Ortega in center field. Schwindel has been replaced by Mancini and veteran Eric Hosmer, whereas Ortega has been replaced by Cody Bellinger.

The Cubs have definitely raised the floor of their expected offensive production in 2023 and if the team sees a breakout from Seiya Suzuki in his second season in Major League Baseball, there is a chance that the team could sneak into the playoff discussion.

Chicago Cubs Convention reaction

The reaction generating from Cubs fans that attended the Cub Convention over the weekend is that the Cubs are headed in the right direction. There is no question that the Cubs are a better team entering the 2023 season than they were entering the 2022 season but the purpose of the convention is generally to build hype for the upcoming season. That is not to say that there isn't a reason to be optimistic about the direction that the Cubs are headed in as, for the most part, they have had a successful offseason. Though, the Cubs still may be a level below the St. Louis Cardinals in regard to being able to fully content for the top spot in the National League Central division.

Chicago Cubs' International Free Agent Signings

Sunday opened the window for Major League Baseball teams to sign international free agents and the Cubs have reportedly agreed to terms with their rumored targets in shortstops Derniche Valdez, Ludwig Espinoza, and Angel Cepeda.

Chicago Cubs top prospect Pete Crow-Armstrong invited to Major League Camp

Top Chicago Cubs prospect Pete Crow-Armstrong told MLB Network radio over the weekend that he will be invited to the team's Major League camp at Spring Training. Crow-Armstrong will most likely start the 2023 campaign with Double-A Tennessee and if he continues the offensive success that he had last season, there is no question that the team may consider a late-season call up to the Major League level.

More Chicago Cubs international free-agent signings

Chicago Cubs pitchers spotted in Arizona last week