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Cubs Corner: Cubs Sign Marisnick, Kintzler to Philly, More

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In this edition of Cubs Corner, the hot stove continues to crackle with life. Former Cubs players are starting to find their 2021 deals, meanwhile, the Cubs are eyeing some potential deals of their own.

Time is ticking, as teams race to fill their rosters prior to the start of the 2021 Spring Training Season. Players are getting ready to start trickling into Florida and Arizona this weekend, and by the end of next week, full squad practices should be taking place.

Cubs Corner: Cubs and Marisnick Reach to Deal

According to MLB Trade Rumors, the Cubs are signing former Mets/Astros outfielder, Jake Marisnick. This comes on the heels of NY signing former Cubs outfielder, Albert Almora Jr. just the other day.

Marisnick was much more solid at the plate (.333/.353/.606) in 2020 than Almora was, but he also sees a lot more playing time. The downside is that over his eight-year career, Marisnick is a lifetime .229/.281/.385 batter (OPS of .666), while Almora’s career numbers stand at .271/.309/.398 with a .707 OPS.

No matter how solid Marisnick might be defensively, the Cubs would be hard-pressed to find a better glove than Almora’s; then there’s Ian Happ. Happ has continued to mature, both offensively and defensively, making Marisnick looking like a bench and/or platoon player, should he sign.

With the recent addition of Joc Pederson, the Cubs will now have Happ, Jason Heyward, (not to mention prospect Ian Miller and others) to patrol the outfield. Assuming they don’t trade Kris Byant, he and Nico Hoerner can also service the outfield as needed. Yet, for some reason, they’re now interested in Marisnick as well.

Is there a deal in the works to flip someone, or are the Cubs just adding outfield and bench depth (while they should be worrying about pitching depth)? My guess would be outfield depth and the hopes that Marisnick can continue his 2020-like offense.

Cubs Corner: Brandon Kintzler Signs with Philly

As I wrote yesterday when it happened, former Cubs/Marlins reliever Brandon Kintzler has opted to take a minor league deal with the Phillies. The Marlins did offer an MLB deal, but Kintzler stands to make more money if he cracks the MLB roster with the Phils.

Just as the Cubs refused to offer him a reasonable salary to stay for 2020, the Marlins apparently did the same for 2021. Kintzler netted a dozen saves for Miami last winter, yet couldn’t offer a reasonable salary on a one-year deal.

Kintzler prefers one-year deals, as nothing is guaranteed the following year if he fails to perform – that’s what drives him. After putting terrific back-to-back seasons in Chicago and Miami, he found himself sitting in the same boat (regarding offers) this winter.

While Kintzler’s deal has yet to be announced, it goes without saying that he’s received an invite to Spring Training. The chance to make more money with Philly (as per yesterday’s article) obviousy guarantees a provision for making the Major League roster.

Kintzler may be in the twighlight of his career, but he onsstently shows that he still has what it takes to make a difference on a Major League Squad.

Cubs Corner: Cubs Flashback

What could be a better way to end today’s Cubs Corner than an interview from July of 1969 with Mr. Cub, Ernie Banks? Also in the interview is Glenn Beckert, the Cubs second baseman from 1965 – 1975.

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Ken Allison is the senior of two MLB Department Heads, as well as a writer and editor for Overtime Heroics. A life-long MLB fan, he's also written for CubsHQ and had the opportunity to try out for the Chicago Cubs in 1986.