Chicago Cubs Offseason Recap Thus Far

The Chicago Cubs offseason has been busy thus far, but not busy in the “right ways”. Fans of the Northside Nine have seen a couple of big subtractions to their loveable club, but not a whole lot of additions. The rumor mill is swirling, causing concern to fans as to what’s still to come.

Chicago Cubs Offseason Subtractions

Let us get the painful part over with. The Chicago Cubs have lost three key pieces of the franchise this offseason, as well as a couple of depth players.

The first departure came from long time president Theo Epstein on November 20, 2020. The man behind the scenes and the builder of the 2016 Champion Cubs’ team was the first to sting Cubs’ fans, but the worst was yet to come.

Still not the most shocking move of the Chicago Cubs offseason, next, on Halloween, the Cubs would decline pitcher Jon Lester’s $25M option. At this point of his career, Lester is not a $25M pitcher, but the Cubs are now strapped for pitching. Losing not only Lester, but Jose Quintana and Tyler Chatwood to free agency as well.

Seemingly, the worst part of the Chicago Cubs offseason came when slugger Kyle Schwarber got non-tendered by the Cubs. This move was both surprising, yet not surprising at the same time. Coming off a poor shorten season where Schwarber hit .188 over 191 at-bats.

Although he had a rough 2020, his 2019 campaign was much better, he hit .250 over 529 at-bats, as well as 38 home runs. Some believe Schwarber is not worth the $9M he would have gotten in arbitration, but the Cubs lack outfield depth.

The Cubs have also Cut ties with the likes of Albert Almora, Jeremy Jeffress, Andrew Chafin, Cameron Maybin, Josh Phegley, Daniel Descalso, Billy Hamilton, and Jason Kipnis.

Chicago Cubs Offseason Additions

Despite a whole lot of subtractions, the Chicago Cubs offseason has not been full of additions. Their first move was replacing Theo Epstein; not surprisingly, the Cubs stayed in-house, promoting general manager Jed Hoyer to the President of Baseball Operations spot, leaving the Cubs general manager position vacant for the time being. Rumors say that Hoyer will be looking outside of the Cubs’ organization to fill the now vacant GM spot.

Since the season ended, the Cubs have been quiet when it comes to adding players. They started by acquiring infielder Matt Schrock off waivers from the St. Louis Cardinals. Schrock is nothing to write home about thus far, only appearing in 11 games while batting .176 in 17 at-bats.

The other player acquisition came when the Cubs claimed relief pitcher Robert Stock off waivers from the Boston Red Sox. Stock is not a big-name player either; to date, the third-year pitcher has appeared in 52 games posting a 4.24 ERA. Although neither player is a huge acquisition, they add at least some depth to a team that lacks the same.

Chicago Cubs Offseason Rumors

With already having made some questionable moves on both sides, more could be on the horizon. The long-running rumor of Kris Bryant being traded is still in full effect, but now there is a team linked to these rumors. Kris Bryant and the Washington Nationals have been linked together thus far, but no deal is in place yet.

In addition to Bryant, catcher Willson Contrerasname has begun popping up in the rumor mill. To date, there are no hard facts that a Contreras trade is imminent, but thus far, the Chicago Cubs’ offseason has pointed in that sort of direction. The Cubs look to be heading towards shedding salary, as rumors of the Cubs core being on the trading block come to fruition fans should not be surprised to see the core dismantled.

What’s Next?

With the MLB winter meetings here, what’s next for the Chicago Cubs offseason? Fans will not see the Cubs shell out big bucks to highly sought-after free agents, instead, expect the Cubs to shed salary while adding a few smaller pieces. As the Cubs rebuild begins, winter meetings may be the first domino for a departure of the Cubs core, whether it be Bryant or Contreras, moves are bound to happen.

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