The Cubs will likely pursue top starters this offseason, and Jeff Samadzija is a possibility as well, Paul Sullivan and Colleen Kane of the Chicago Tribune write. Samardzija, along with highly ranked pitchers like Zack Greinke and Jordan Zimmermann, were among 20 players who were extended qualifying offers. But GM Jed Hoyer says the qualifying offer won’t be a decisive factor for the Cubs, who currently have the 28th pick in next year’s draft. “(Losing a compensatory) draft pick is important. We’ve built this team through the draft in large part, and through trades,” says Hoyer. “But when you’re in a winning window, you look at that consideration differently than you might have when you’re building.” Here’s more from Chicago.
- ESPN Chicago’s Jesse Rogers has more from Hoyer, who confirms that the Cubs will be hunting for not just one starter this offseason, but several. “We want to add at least one [major leaguer] but we do need to impact our starting pitching depth,” says Hoyer. “We will look to add multiple starting pitchers at various levels of the organization. That’s the best way to say it.” That means that, in addition to elite starting pitchers, the Cubs will also be in the market for less expensive ones. Rogers adds that the Cubs’ focus on pitching this winter means they aren’t likely to spend heavily on Dexter Fowler, and won’t pursue an expensive replacement if he departs.
- The Cubs are, however, “doing homework” on top free agent outfielders Jason Heyward and Alex Gordon, Bruce Levine of CBS Chicago writes. Given their focus on pitching, it would be surprising, to say the least, if the Cubs signed either player, especially since they’re both corner outfielders and they Cubs have two promising youngsters in Kyle Schwarber and Jorge Soler currently penciled into the corners. It does, however, make sense for the Cubs to do their due diligence on just about everyone, given that they should have a fair amount of money to spend.