An MLB 16 The Show Simulation of the Offseason with the Chicago Cubs
An MLB The Show 16 simulation of the Chicago Cubs 2016 Offseason
With the MLB Winter Meetings ending on Thursday, I used the Franchise Mode of MLB The Show 16 to take control of the Chicago Cubs and experiment with different trades and other transactions in my own version of the 2016 offseason. The Show’s Franchise Mode assigns players different overall skill ratings to measure their effectiveness in the simulation. With that said, I simulated the 2016 offseason and began making transactions which I believe would help the Chicago Cubs repeat as World Champions. These transactions were based on my ideas to make the Cubs a better team for 2016 and beyond.
I did not resign Aroldis Chapman, who ended up with Toronto in the simulation and back with the Yankees in real life. I also did not pursue Kenley Jansen, who resigned with the Dodgers in the game. While both pitchers would be a luxury out of the bullpen, an injury free Hector Rondon would cost less, as I was not willing to pay a closer upwards of $80 million dollars on a long-term contract. To compensate for the bullpen, I signed Joe Blanton to a two-year, $8-million contract after failing to acquire another left-handed pitcher.
Furthermore, I traded Jorge Soler to the Royals, but I did not receive Wade Davis in return, as what happened at the actual Winter Meetings. Instead, I acquired Yordano Ventura, the 25-year old starting pitcher. Ventura has tremendous upside and postseason experience even after a below-average season. Ventura is still only 25 and could serve as a fourth or fifth starter in a potentially great Cubs rotation. He is also a young and controllable pitcher, something the Cubs lack with the age of Lester and Lackey and upcoming free agency of Jake Arrieta. I then resigned Dexter Fowler to a 3-year deal worth $48 million. While the Cardinals signed Fowler in real life on Thursday, Fowler’s offensive splits (.276/.393/.840) would remain a catalyst at the leadoff spot in the lineup. Albert Almora would serve as a fourth outfielder or platoon with Jason Heyward in right field. With those moves being made, I entered the 2017 season with this lineup:
Furthermore, I used this pitching staff for the season:
With this team, along with the midseason acquisition of Sonny Gray from the A’s for Ian Happ, Duane Underwood, and Eloy Jimenez, my 2017 Cubs achieved a record of 106-76, winning the NL Central and once again earning home-field advantage in the National League playoffs (and with the new CBA home-field advantage in the World Series as well). After defeating the Giants and Nationals in 4 games each, my 2017 Chicago Cubs repeated as World Series Champions in 6 games over the Toronto Blue Jays. Although most of these transactions are impossible after the Winter Meetings, my simulation of the 2017 offseason demonstrated some of the directions which the Cubs could have or should take to repeat as World Champions.