In a time when the temperature here in Chicago is lower than some parts of Alaska and Greenland, we sure could use some hot stove action. Alas, nothing has really happened for the Cubs or most other MLB clubs since before Christmas, and we can’t exactly make up news where there is none. So, we wait…
There isn’t much in the way of baseball, other than Winter Leagues action in the Caribbean and Australia, until spring training begins next month. There are numerous reasons being postulated for the stagnation of baseball transactions, some of which may stem from the new collective bargaining agreement that is no longer as player friendly as the players themselves might like in the long run. For the Cubs themselves, knowing that the roster is in good shape and they have plenty of money to spend, they can afford to wait out the market and see what develops. Meanwhile, the biggest rumor outside the Cubs sphere of influence seems to involve which team wants to throw a ridiculous amount of money at Eric Hosmer. The three major pitching free agents continue to stay available for the taking if anyone wants them.
According to a Tuesday report from USA Today’s Bob Nightengale, the Cubs would be willing to bring Arrieta back to the North Side. But of course there’s a catch, the same catch that seems to be holding things up everywhere this offseason: money. Well, more specifically it’s money and years, as Nightengale outlines that the Cubs would be fine with inking Arrieta to a four-year contract worth $110 million. But Arrieta and his representation are supposedly looking for something lengthier, more in the vein of a five- or six-year deal, which according to Nightengale the Cubs are not so cool with.
The Cubs certainly have enough space under the luxury tax threshold to accommodate this contract for Jake Arrieta. And if Alex Cobb and Yu Darvish want around the same amount, then that works money-wise as well. It comes down to which pitcher the Cubs think is the best fit for the team and for the years and money. There are two weeks before the Cubs Convention, and that gives the team time to finalize a contract before bringing in a surprise guest for Friday’s opening ceremony. Or maybe they’ll do something before the Hall of Fame announces their results on the 24th. But unfortunately, we will have to keep waiting.
Now watch the Cubs sign everyone they need right after I shut off the computer.