Thursday– Albert Pujols shocked the nation today when he decided to leave the St. Louis Cardinals to join the Los Angeles Angels. The deal is worth $250 million over 10years. With the departure of Pujols, the Cardinals went from a favorite in the NL Central for the next few years to a team that is looking to replace one of the, if not the greatest player in baseball.
Pujols leaving the division opens the door for the Chicago Cubs to become a threat sooner than thought perhaps. Speculation has now begun on where All-Star first baseman, Prince Fielder will land. Despite being quite about it, the Cubs are consider to be one of the favorites to sign Fielder. With almost $60 million to work with, the Cubs have the money to sign Fielder. But is it smart for the Cubs to sign Fielder to a big deal?
Epstein has stated numerous times that the Cubs will look to becoming an elite team by the draft and signing of international players. But with the new CBA deal, Epstein may have to reconsider his plans. Carlos Pena rejected the Cubs arbitration offer yesterday so they have need for a new first baseman.
The Cubs signing Fielder makes perfect sense. By signing him, the Cubs will arguably have two of the best hitters in the National League. Starlin Castro for hits and average and Fielder for average and power. If Fielder comes to Chicago, he will help continue to change the culture. Bringing in Fielder will immediately draw even more fan attention. But more importantly, he changes the Cubs lineup. Fielder fills the need for a left handed power hitter. Something Cubs fans know they have been trying to do for many years. Next, he change make an impact on the pitching staff. Knowing that the offense can put up runs will give the pitchers more confidence and less pressure. And finally, Fielder makes a big impact in the clubhouse. He was considered to be a great clubhouse leader in Milwaukee, and would likely become a leader in the Cubs clubhouse.
Signing Fielder just seems to make a great amount of sense and can help the Cubs reach the playoffs sooner than later.
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