Chicago Cubs Likely Out On Elite Free Agent After Manager’s Comments

It seems like a hint was dropped about one of the elite free agents still available who the Chicago Cubs could pursue.

Chicago Cubs Likely Out On Elite Free Agent After Manager's Comments -  Sports Illustrated Inside The Cubs

For those Chicago Cubs fans who were hoping the front office might find some aggression before the start of the new season, that doesn’t seem to be the case.

Throughout the winter, it was reported the Cubs weren’t willing to meet some of the top-end asking prices that many of the best free agents remaining were looking to receive.

That included Cody Bellinger and Matt Chapman, no matter how good the fits were on paper.

Chicago likely would only be interested if some of the prices cratered.

The Toronto Blue Jays seemed to have thrown the Cubs a lifeline when their general manager stated they likely were done adding players this offseason after being rumored to have interest in both Bellinger and Chapman.

With another team out of the running, the market for these two targets might have started collapsing to a point where Chicago’s front office could become interested.

However, it seems like they are out on Chapman following Craig Counsell’s comments that Christopher Morel will get a lot of work at third base.

If this were to work out, that would be the ideal way forward for the organization.

They wouldn’t have to shell out a large contract to an aging player, Morel’s defense would be improved enough to be in an everyday role, keeping his bat in the lineup and freeing up the designated hitter spot for another slugger.

Of course, that is all reliant on Morel being a good enough defender.

He hasn’t shown that to be true so far during his time at the position. This was one of the main reasons why there was a rotating door of players there in 2023.

The Cubs are playing a risky game.

If Morel is able to become the third baseman, then they have saved a large contract they could have handed Chapman and have more financial flexibility.

But if his defense isn’t improved, they’ll likely have to continue rotating players at that position once again in 2024 and would have let a perennial Gold Glover land on another team.

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