Pitchers and catchers report this week, marking the official start to spring training 2024. Many Cubs players are already at the team's complex in Arizona putting in work as they, like all of us, wait to see if Jed Hoyer has another big move or two up his sleeve before Opening Day.
All winter, the Cubs have been connected to Cody Bellinger, who re-established himself in a big way on a one-year deal with Chicago last season. But with Scott Boras seeking $200+ million and Hoyer refusing to go to such lengths, the standoff continues. And, according to FanSided's Robert Murray, the lack of movement not only with Bellinger, but with the other three big-name Boras clients - Blake Snell, Matt Chapman and Jordan Montgomery - is unlikely to end anytime soon.
"I have not heard anything to indicate that any of them are close to signing, which means that this is only going to drag on more and more."- Robert Murray via The Baseball Insiders
That comment came on the heels of a discussion over Montgomery and his weak market, which has been hampered by revenue concerns on the part of the World Series champion Rangers. As Murray notes in the podcast, the Red Sox remain a perfect fit, but, to this point, refuse to spend any real money under chief baseball officer Craig Breslow.
Cubs could be a fit for pretty much any of the 4 Scott Boras free agents
The Cubs could also be a fit for Montgomery but, as is the case with Bellinger, the price tag will have to come down before Hoyer would make a serious move. Adding someone whose as consistent as the left-hander has been to a rotation that includes Justin Steele, Shota Imanaga, Jameson Taillon and Kyle Hendricks would give Chicago one of the highest-quality pitching staffs in the game.
Even if the Cubs swooped in on Montgomery, it's hard to see how this team plans on scoring enough runs to win without a Bellinger or Chapman signing. There are some veteran bats out there the team could bring in on short-term deals as safety nets for guys like Michael Busch or Pete Crow-Armstrong, but the expectation with fans is that Chicago lands one of the two big Boras position players left standing.
Don't expect that to happen anytime soon, though. This feels like we could be in for a lengthy wait, well into the spring before we get any sort of resolution here.