Things Cubs Fans Need To Know on December 4th
The MLB Winter Meetings are getting ready to kick off next week in Orlando and run from 12/10 to 12/14, culminating in the Rule 5 draft. This figures to be an exciting next two weeks, and I think we’ll see the Cubs make at least two moves. That said, I wanted to comment on a few things related to the off-season so far.
Shohei Ohtani Watch
I’m not sure where I stand on this. On one hand, I see the value of someone as talented as Ohtani, especially given his age and the fact that he’s supposed to be a great pitcher. However, I’ve got such hesitancy when it comes to get excited. Ultimately, it’s not about the money. Ohtani will sign for a ridiculously undervalue contract because of the international signing rules. I just worry about getting too excited.
Everything I’ve read is that the finalists are the Angels, Mariners, Giants, Padres, Rangers and…Cubs. I don’t see the Cubs being the winning team, but you never know with Theo and his history. He does things we’ve not thought possible.
Over the weekend, the Cubs finalized the roster for players that were eligible for arbitration and had not yet been decided on. The deadline was Friday and there were two casualties…Hector Rondon and Taylor Davis. Davis is not a surprise, but the release of Rondon, to me, clearly shows what the team feels about him and why we didn’t see him much down the stretch. This bullpen is going to get an overhaul and Rondon, while he served a role, was no longer needed. His projected $6 mil in arbitration is just a cost that doesn’t merit the return.
There was an interesting name signed on Friday. Dario Alvarez was released by the Rangers and the Cubs snatched him up on a one year deal. With the struggles of Justin Wilson, who was brought in to shore up the lefty reliever role, the Cubs made a proactive and low risk signing with high upside. Alvarez struggled in Texas, but he misses bats (11.4 K/9). If he can reign in the control issues, the stuff is there. Throw in the under two years of MLB service time and you’ve got a guy who can be team controlled for 4+ years if he hits. He’s out of options, so he’ll need to make the team out of camp or clear waivers to be sent to AAA.