Chicago Cubs Rumors: Local insider offers predictions for year ahead

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2023 figures to be an important year for the Chicago Cubs as it marks the first year since 2021 that the team has shifted their expectations at the Major League level. No longer is the goal for the organization to deconstruct their core at the Major League level in order to replenish the farm system but instead, the goal has shifted toward the team returning to contention at the Major League level. The foundation for the Cubs returning to relevancy at the Major League started to be laid last offseason with the signings of outfielder Seiya Suzuki and starting pitcher Marcus Stroman and continued this offseason with the additions of shortstop Dansby Swanson, outfielder Cody Bellinger, and starting pitcher Jameson Taillon. Not to overlook catcher Tucker Barnhart or relief pitcher Brad Boxberger either.

In his predictions for the year ahead, The Athletic's Sahadev Sharma touched on several topics to look for: Ian Happ will finish the 2023 season with a different team, the Cubs' outfield prospects excel, Nico Hoerner signs an extension, another pitching prospect emerges, and the Cubs will add an impact bat.

For the purpose of this thought exercise, we are going to focus on three of Sharma's predictions. Those predictions are that Happ ends the 2023 season with another team, Hoerner signs an extension, and the Cubs add an impact bat. These three predictions certainly would have an immediate impact at the Major League level for the Cubs.