4. Shota Imanaga: 2024 salary of $9 million
The newest member of the Cubs pitching staff will earn a team-friendly $9 million in 2024, giving Shota Imanaga the chance to be an offseason steal. If his ZiPS projections come to fruition, Imanaga will be the middle of the rotation-level arm that offers a bit of stability to balance out the younger and inexperienced pitchers.
In the Nippon Professional Baseball league last year, Imanaga threw 159 innings and posted a 2.80 ERA with 188 strikeouts. It's hard to tell how his stuff will translate to the more formidable lineups in MLB so Imanaga's exact value remains to be seen. But if he indeed becomes a middle-of-the-rotation starter, $9 million is well worth it.