Offseason rumors/discussion thread

beckdawg

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Figure there's going to be a lot of arm chair qb-ing over the next few days so may as well have a thread for it.

My 2 cents, I think you bring back Hamels. Assuming they do that and Darvish is healthy and returns to form that's a pretty formidable top 5 at least on paper. I might question the depth given the age but you're gonna have Monty still and I would assume they bring Chatwood to ST rather than just outright releasing him. Best case he fixes himself enough to be a long guy. Worst case you probably cut him prior to the season.

Bullpen is going to be interesting. I'm wondering if they give Alzolay a shot to break into the majors that way. By in large, the bullpen isn't that bad but I think you gotta consider adding someone at least as good as strop. I'm not sure you can trust Morrow so if he does go down and Strop is closing having another guy to set up is a big deal.

The offense I could probably write a lot about. In fact I have. But suffice to say I'm on the Machado bandwagon. I'm not on the Harper bandwagon. I think you want more high batting average players on the team not sluggers. The team couldn't get hits to save their life so many times this season and the last. That's one of the reasons I like Machado more because he's a .297 hitter this year.

Michael Brantley also interests me. He's a little speed, basically no k's and a great batting average.
 

beckdawg

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Also, here's a list of potential FA's. I'm gonna put spoiler tags around it so it doesn't make the page super long

Catchers

Drew Butera (35)
Robinson Chirinos (35) — $2.375MM club option with a $100K buyout
A.J. Ellis (38)
Yasmani Grandal (30)
Nick Hundley (35)
Jonathan Lucroy (33)
Martin Maldonado (32)
Jeff Mathis (36)
Brian McCann (35) — $15MM club option with no buyout
Devin Mesoraco (31)
Wilson Ramos (31)
Rene Rivera (35)
Kurt Suzuki (35)
Matt Wieters (33)

First Basemen

Matt Adams (30)
Lucas Duda (32)
Marwin Gonzalez (30)
Joe Mauer (36)
Logan Morrison (31) — $8MM mutual option with a $1MM buyout
Steve Pearce (36)
Hanley Ramirez (35)
Mark Reynolds (35)
Justin Smoak (32) — $8MM club option with a $250K buyout
Danny Valencia (34)

Second Basemen

Asdrubal Cabrera (33)
Daniel Descalso (32)
Brian Dozier (32)
Logan Forsythe (32)
Marwin Gonzalez (30)
Josh Harrison (31) — $10.5MM club option with a $1MM buyout
Ian Kinsler (37)
DJ LeMahieu (30)
Jed Lowrie (35)
Daniel Murphy (34)
Eduardo Nuñez (32) — $5MM player option with a $2MM buyout
Jose Reyes (36)
Sean Rodriguez (34)
Eric Sogard (33)
Neil Walker (33)

Shortstops

Elvis Andrus (30) — can opt out of remaining four years and $58MM
Asdrubal Cabrera (33)
Alcides Escobar (32)
Eduardo Escobar (30)
Freddy Galvis (29)
Marwin Gonzalez (30)
Adeiny Hechavarria (30)
Jose Iglesias (29)
Manny Machado (26)
Jordy Mercer (32)
Eduardo Nuñez (32) — $5MM player option with a $2MM buyout
Jose Reyes (36)
Eric Sogard (33)

Third Basemen

Adrian Beltre (40)
Asdrubal Cabrera (33)
Josh Donaldson (33)
Logan Forsythe (32)
David Freese (36) — $6MM club option with a $500K buyout
Marwin Gonzalez (30)
Chase Headley (35)
Jung-ho Kang (32) — $5.5MM club option with a $250K buyout
Jed Lowrie (35)
Manny Machado (26)
Mike Moustakas (30) — $15MM mutual option with a $1MM buyout
Eduardo Nuñez (32) — $5MM player option with a $2MM buyout
Jose Reyes (36)
Andrew Romine (33)
Pablo Sandoval (32)
Luis Valbuena (33)

Left Fielders

Gregor Blanco (35)
Michael Brantley (32)
Melky Cabrera (34)
Rajai Davis (38)
Daniel Descalso (32)
Brett Gardner (35) — $12.5MM club option with a $2MM buyout
Craig Gentry (35)
Carlos Gonzalez (33)
Marwin Gonzalez (30)
Brandon Guyer (33) — $3MM club option with a $250K buyout
Jon Jay (33)
Cameron Maybin (32)
Gerardo Parra (32) — $12MM club option with a $1.5MM buyout

Center Fielders

Gregor Blanco (35)
Rajai Davis (38)
Craig Gentry (35)
Carlos Gomez (33)
Jon Jay (33)
Adam Jones (33)
Leonys Martin (31)
Cameron Maybin (32)
Andrew McCutchen (32)
A.J. Pollock (31)
Denard Span (35) – $12MM mutual option with a $4MM buyout

Right Fielders

Jose Bautista (38)
Melky Cabrera (34)
Lonnie Chisenhall (30)
Curtis Granderson (38)
Carlos Gomez (33)
Carlos Gonzalez (33)
Brandon Guyer (33) — $3MM club option with a $250K buyout
Bryce Harper (26)
Jason Heyward (29) — can opt out of remaining five years and $106MM
Matt Joyce (34)
Nick Markakis (35)
Andrew McCutchen (32)
Hunter Pence (36)
Yasmany Tomas (28) — can opt out of remaining two years and $32.5MM

Designated Hitters

Pedro Alvarez (32)
Nelson Cruz (38)
Evan Gattis (32)
Victor Martinez (40)

Starting Pitchers

Madison Bumgarner (29) — $12MM club option with a $1.5MM buyout
Clay Buchholz (34)
Trevor Cahill (31)
Carlos Carrasco (32) — $9.75MM club option with a $662,500 buyout
Bartolo Colon (46)
Patrick Corbin (29)
Marco Estrada (35)
Nathan Eovaldi (29)
Doug Fister (35) — $4.5MM club option with a $500K buyout
Jaime Garcia (32)
Gio Gonzalez (33)
Miguel Gonzalez (35)
Cole Hamels (35) — $20MM club option with a $6MM buyout
Jason Hammel (36) — $12MM mutual option with a $2MM buyout
J.A. Happ (36)
Matt Harvey (30)
Jeremy Hellickson (32)
Derek Holland (32)
Hisashi Iwakuma (35)
Clayton Kershaw (31) — can opt out of remaining two years, $65MM
Dallas Keuchel (31)
Francisco Liriano (35)
Jordan Lyles (28) — $3.5MM club option with a $250K buyout
Lance Lynn (32)
Wade Miley (32)
Matt Moore (30) — $10MM club option with a $750K buyout
Charlie Morton (35)
Martin Perez (28) — $7.5MM club option with a $750K buyout
Drew Pomeranz (30)
David Price (33) — can opt out of remaining four years and $127MM
Garrett Richards (31)
Tyson Ross (32)
Hyun-Jin Ryu (32)
CC Sabathia (38)
Chris Sale (30) — $15MM club option with a $1MM buyout
Anibal Sanchez (35)
Ervin Santana (36) — $14MM club option with a $1MM buyout
Hector Santiago (31)
James Shields (37) — $16MM club option with a $2MM buyout
Chris Tillman (31)
Josh Tomlin (34)
Adam Wainwright (37)

Right-Handed Relievers

Cody Allen (30)
John Axford (36)
Tony Barnette (35)
Matt Belisle (39)
Joaquin Benoit (41)
Blaine Boyer (37)
Brad Brach (33)
Santiago Casilla (38)
Jesse Chavez (35)
Tyler Clippard (34)
Jeurys Familia (29)
Kelvin Herrera (29)
Greg Holland (33)
Daniel Hudson (32)
Jim Johnson (36)
Nate Jones (33) — $4.65MM club option with a $1.25MM buyout
Shawn Kelley (35)
Joe Kelly (31)
Craig Kimbrel (31)
Brandon Kintzler (34) — $10MM club option/$5MM player option
Ryan Madson (38)
Zach McAllister (31)
Mark Melancon (34) — can opt out of remaining two years and $28MM
Peter Moylan (40)
Bud Norris (34)
Seunghwan Oh (36) — $2.5MM club/vesting option with a $250K buyout
Adam Ottavino (33)
David Phelps (32)
A.J. Ramos (32)
David Robertson (34)
Fernando Rodney (42) — $4.25MM club option with a $250K buyout
Sergio Romo (36)
Fernando Salas (34)
Joakim Soria (35) — $10MM mutual option with a $1MM buyout
Pedro Strop (34) — $6.25MM club option with a $500K buyout
Junichi Tazawa (33)
Shawn Tolleson (31)
Adam Warren (31)
Blake Wood (33)
Brad Ziegler (39)

Left-Handed Relievers

Jerry Blevins (35)
Zach Britton (31)
Jorge De La Rosa (38)
Jake Diekman (32)
Sean Doolittle (32) — $6MM club option with a $500K buyout
Zach Duke (36)
Boone Logan (34)
Andrew Miller (34)
Hector Santiago (31)
Tony Sipp (35)
Justin Wilson (31)
 

Hammer

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Offseason plan:

- get couple of hitters with better OBA percentage, leadoff being the key (too bad they didn't go after Yelich last Offseason), either via. FA or trade (using Schwarber, Happ, Almora, Heyward, Russell, etc.)

- retain Hamels (Darvish is FA bust, and you need a strong Top 4 SP), look if there's a younger SP available via. trade

- try to solidify Bullpen by adding couple of higher quality RPs (FA, trade)

- evaluate coaches (it's seems like most pitchers and some top hitters had a down year) and make adjustments/moves accordingly
 

Bigfoot

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I wouldn't mind seeing Hamels and Chavez brought back.

Going to have to move one of our younger hitters

Bolster the bullpen

Look at bringing in a bat or two that have a higher batting average contact rate.

Either bring in Harper or Machado; I dont have a preference as I think both would be a huge upgrade to this lineup, and would help with the 40 games we scored 0 or 1 runs.
 

CSF77

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Figure there's going to be a lot of arm chair qb-ing over the next few days so may as well have a thread for it.

My 2 cents, I think you bring back Hamels. Assuming they do that and Darvish is healthy and returns to form that's a pretty formidable top 5 at least on paper. I might question the depth given the age but you're gonna have Monty still and I would assume they bring Chatwood to ST rather than just outright releasing him. Best case he fixes himself enough to be a long guy. Worst case you probably cut him prior to the season.

Bullpen is going to be interesting. I'm wondering if they give Alzolay a shot to break into the majors that way. By in large, the bullpen isn't that bad but I think you gotta consider adding someone at least as good as strop. I'm not sure you can trust Morrow so if he does go down and Strop is closing having another guy to set up is a big deal.

The offense I could probably write a lot about. In fact I have. But suffice to say I'm on the Machado bandwagon. I'm not on the Harper bandwagon. I think you want more high batting average players on the team not sluggers. The team couldn't get hits to save their life so many times this season and the last. That's one of the reasons I like Machado more because he's a .297 hitter this year.

Michael Brantley also interests me. He's a little speed, basically no k's and a great batting average.

I did post on him before. He would be a prototypical lead off in LF. D is a minus value so you can’t afford to push him elsewhere. No speed which is a element that is lacking at the top. Seeing how the only run came by small ball vs the wait for the big inning approach I’m not sure how I feel about this. Nothing against him but it feels push with Murphy and not changing the line up dynamic.

If you wanted to get a cheap fix up to the line up I’ll bet that they could sign Beltre to a minimal deal to play with Yu and Hamels. That pushes Bryant to LF full time.

At that point I believe that they have to decide on what direction that they have to go with the rest.

Keepers:Bryant, Rizzo, Baez

Rest really depends. Pitching was better and that relects well on Contreras. His O suffered but I would put that on him focusing on the staff and being a better catcher.

Zo should be situational next year honestly. If you go in with him as a every day it most likely burns you

So it comes down to Manny vs Harper honestly. Manny is the better player but not necessarily the best fit. If you end up trading Schwarber you have to replace his impact.

I still like Harper/Donaldson trading Heyward and Schwarber. I still think having a every day speed weapon also makes sense. But that would cost too much.

So aiming at retaining Chavez and Hamels. Then signing Beltre and moving Bryant to LF. I would still trade Russell. Too much drama so let him start fresh. But they would still need a lead off and I would sign Harper and move Rizzo back to it. The impact of 2 LH bats that hit 30 HR’s I believe has more impact that Brantley and leaving Bryant at 3B. We saw that Bote got more playing time that he should have so it makes sense that you address that with a upgrade.

Baez is a great SS. I think that this issue needs to close.

2B I’m fine with Bote and Zo sharing it. But I think there is opertunity here for a facelift. Again speed is a real team lacking.

If you sign Harper and can’t trade Heyward then CF is Heyward’s default. Rather he is traded or he opts out honestly. This is another spot that you really can retool.
 

Hammer

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Machado is similar to Baez as he doesn't take walks, so between him and Harper you go after the better OBA in latter.

We need guys who can get on base, Machado is just more of the same, Harper is improvement from that perspective.
 

fatbeard

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New hitting coach please.
Not endorsing this idea, but it raises a valid question that someone needs to ask of Epstein/Maddon:

If the justification for firing John Mallee is that the Cubs' offense was not good enough from 2015-2017, how do you justify keeping Chili Davis after 2018?
 

Chicagosports89

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I think the cubs should make some combination of Schwarber, Happ, Almora, and Russell available to the Mets for Degrom. Russell probably has zero value at this point. So maybe Schwarber, Happ and a couple prospects could bring in Degrom? Idk everyone’s value is kind of shot right now it seems. But I’d like them to be aggressive with Degrom. Dump Quintana for some prospects to get some organizational depth since we’d have a rotation of Degrom, Lester, Hendricks, Hamels (assuming you bring him back), and Darvish.

Resign Murphy as he is one of our few players with a professional approach that seems to have a chance against good, playoff pitching. Go hard after machado. Infield of Rizzo, Murphy, Baez, and Machado. Outfield of Bryant, Almora, and Heyward. Depth of Zobrist, Bote, Russell (unless you move him for prospects or bullpen arms). Catching Contreras and Caratini. I fully expect a bounce back season from Contreras and Bryant next year.

Bullpen obviously has Morrow, Strop, and Montgomery. I’d bring back Chavez and Cishek. Maybe start Alzolay in the pen.
Look at other lefties in FA such as Andrew Miller, Diekman, Duke, Britton. Go after another righty for the pen too ranging from upside guy to shut down arm depending on which lefty you get (Familia, Joe Kelly, Melancon, Robertson, Ottavino, Kimbrel, Herrera, Norris).

This payroll is probably outrageous but if they are going after Harper or Machado then they are going over the luxury tax and going for it for a couple more years anyway. Gives you a couple years with a dominant rotation and pen and what should be a very good lineup to make a run before you have to sell off a do a mini rebuild potentially.
 

Parade_Rain

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Not endorsing this idea, but it raises a valid question that someone needs to ask of Epstein/Maddon:

If the justification for firing John Mallee is that the Cubs' offense was not good enough from 2015-2017, how do you justify keeping Chili Davis after 2018?
I think they let Chili go just because of how many of my hitters failed in the 2nd half. As you know, the hitting instructor is usually the first guy gone when things don't go as planned whether there is fault or not.
 

fatbeard

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I think the cubs should make some combination of Schwarber, Happ, Almora, and Russell available to the Mets for Degrom. Russell probably has zero value at this point. So maybe Schwarber, Happ and a couple prospects could bring in Degrom? Idk everyone’s value is kind of shot right now it seems. But I’d like them to be aggressive with Degrom. Dump Quintana for some prospects to get some organizational depth since we’d have a rotation of Degrom, Lester, Hendricks, Hamels (assuming you bring him back), and Darvish.

Resign Murphy as he is one of our few players with a professional approach that seems to have a chance against good, playoff pitching. Go hard after machado. Infield of Rizzo, Murphy, Baez, and Machado. Outfield of Bryant, Almora, and Heyward. Depth of Zobrist, Bote, Russell (unless you move him for prospects or bullpen arms). Catching Contreras and Caratini. I fully expect a bounce back season from Contreras and Bryant next year.

Bullpen obviously has Morrow, Strop, and Montgomery. I’d bring back Chavez and Cishek. Maybe start Alzolay in the pen.
Look at other lefties in FA such as Andrew Miller, Diekman, Duke, Britton. Go after another righty for the pen too ranging from upside guy to shut down arm depending on which lefty you get (Familia, Joe Kelly, Melancon, Robertson, Ottavino, Kimbrel, Herrera, Norris).

This payroll is probably outrageous but if they are going after Harper or Machado then they are going over the luxury tax and going for it for a couple more years anyway. Gives you a couple years with a dominant rotation and pen and what should be a very good lineup to make a run before you have to sell off a do a mini rebuild potentially.
The Cubs do not have the pieces to get DeGrom. Full Stop.
 

anotheridiot

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My biggest concern this offseason is that KB does not want surgery on the shoulder. I think his brain keeps telling his body, this is going to hurt, every time he swings.

We saw him letting go of the bat with the right hand on swings yesterday, he is telling himself he cannot be himself if he hangs onto the bat.

He seems afraid of surgery, wants to rehab, but if the labrum or whatever is torn in there, it does not heal, they need to cut the tear so it does not continue to tear.

You have a healthy KB all year and I think you find a way to score more that 0 or 1 run in some of those 40 games.

Healthy KB, Rizzo, Baez, Zobrist, Almora, Schwarber, Happ, Contrares, that is a team most cities would die for.
 

Parade_Rain

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Machado is similar to Baez as he doesn't take walks, so between him and Harper you go after the better OBA in latter.

We need guys who can get on base, Machado is just more of the same, Harper is improvement from that perspective.
Machado walked 70 times this season. Baez 21. Sounds similar.
 

A.C. Milan

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We need to sign Harper, retain Hamels and get rid of Heyward's contract. Russell, and i'm very sad to say this Schwarber are tradeable, i was the biggest Schwarber meatball and i thought he could be a great all around hitter
 

Parade_Rain

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Cubs sign Machado over Harper. Need IF more than OF unless Heyward opts out. I suppose they could trade him, but they will take on most of the check. I would expect as bright as Epstein is that he is pissed at himself and will be more active addressing team needs this Winter.
 

Parade_Rain

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My biggest concern this offseason is that KB does not want surgery on the shoulder. I think his brain keeps telling his body, this is going to hurt, every time he swings.

We saw him letting go of the bat with the right hand on swings yesterday, he is telling himself he cannot be himself if he hangs onto the bat.

He seems afraid of surgery, wants to rehab, but if the labrum or whatever is torn in there, it does not heal, they need to cut the tear so it does not continue to tear.

You have a healthy KB all year and I think you find a way to score more that 0 or 1 run in some of those 40 games.

Healthy KB, Rizzo, Baez, Zobrist, Almora, Schwarber, Happ, Contrares, that is a team most cities would die for.
Labrum surgery for a baseball player is the last thing they would want. The success rate is hit or miss (no pun intended). Unlike knees and elbows, which only move back and forth, labrums (shoulders and hips) move in all sorts of directions. A football player who has an imperfect result from a labrum surgery still lifts and plays football. A baseball player's career is over.
 
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