Chicago Cubs Rumors: Chris Bassitt and Taijuan Walker among targets

Chicago Cubs
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The Chicago Cubs have cast a wide net in regard to their free agent interests this offseason as the team is highly involved in the shortstop market with Carlos Correa looking like their preferred option; the first base market with the team having prioritized Jose Abreu at the position along with meetings with representatives for Josh Bell and Trey Mancini; the catching market with Omar Narvaez and Christian Vazquez being options discussed internally; and, the centerfield market as the team has been monitoring Cody Bellinger's status throughout the offseason.

One area of need that can not go unaddressed for the Cubs this offseason is the starting pitching rotation. The Cubs are in need of a top-of-the-rotation starting pitcher this offseason and that is why Japanese free-agent starting pitcher Kodai Senga has been connected to the Cubs this offseason. The Cubs were also involved in the bidding for free agent starting pitcher Tyler Anderson before he signed a three-year deal with the Los Angeles Angels earlier this week.

With the Cubs appearing to be staying away from the high-end free-agent starting pitchers this offseason, questions have remained over how exactly the team would address the need this offseason. Patrick Mooney and Sahadev Sharma of The Athletic may have provided some clarity on the Cubs' search for starting pitching as they named two pitchers that the Cubs have an interest in.

"The Cubs continue to be active in the free-agent market for starting pitchers, a group that includes Kodai Senga, Chris Bassitt and Taijuan Walker on their radar. "

The Athletic

Of the two new starting pitchers added to the Cubs' rumor mill, Bassitt is more aligned with what the team needs. After earning American League All-Star honors with the Oakland Athletics in 2021, Bassitt was traded to the New York Mets prior to the 2022 season. With the Mets in 2022, Bassitt posted a 3.42 ERA, 3.66 FIP, and 90 ERA- (ERA- measures ERA adjusted for park and league where 100 is the average and lower is better) in 181.2 innings pitched. Bassitt also features a mid-90s fastball and would be a change of pace for the Cubs' rotation.

Bassitt's teammate with the Mets in 2022, Taijuan Walker, had a similar season. Walker posted a 3.49 ERA, 3.65 FIP, and 92 ERA- in a tick over 157 innings pitched with the Mets last year.

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Bassitt has proved to have more of consistent profile over the course of his career as opposed to Walker and that would be the reason why he represents as a better solution to the Cubs' starting pitching needs this offseason.