The Cubs have had a brutal year, and fans are already thinking ahead to the offseason and preparing for 2011. Here's what the Cubs have:
Kosuke Fukudome is absent from the starting lineup in this picture. I expect the Cubs to try to trade him in the offseason, especially if Jim Hendry remains the GM. Even if Fukudome stays, the Cubs would probably give more playing time to Colvin.
The Cubs should be active in the free agent market for first basemen as they attempt to replace Derrek Lee. Adam Dunn, Carlos Pena, Aubrey Huff, and Paul Konerko could be options. Troy Glaus, Adam LaRoche, Lyle Overbay, and Lance Berkman might fit into the second tier. I can envision the Cubs pursuing Dunn if the Nationals don't extend him.
The Hendry front office has always succeeded in dumping players they've soured on, and Carlos Zambrano should be no exception. That still leaves four decent rotation options, with a handful of viable candidates to compete for the fifth spot (perhaps including Andrew Cashner and Thomas Diamond). The rotation lacks depth, but I'm not sure there will be room in the already-bloated payroll to pursue Cliff Lee or even Javier Vazquez. The Cubs probably will survey the free agent market for a veteran setup man, of which there are plenty of hit-or-miss options.
Last offseason the Cubs were somewhat paralyzed by the need to move Milton Bradley's contract before they knew how much money they had to spend. History might repeat itself as they attempt to unload large commitments to Zambrano and Fukudome. They'll also face big raises for arbitration-eligibles Geovany Soto and Carlos Marmol, among others. The Cubs' offseason should involve plenty of financial wrangling as they try to free up enough dollars to avoid bringing back the same 90-loss crew in 2011.