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Time is Running Out, But the Cubs Still Have Time to Make a Splash in Free Agency

The Cubs are running out of time before the impending lockout, but there is a chance some time for them to make a splash before the stoppage.

Jed Hoyer Cubs
Photo: John Antonoff/Chicago Sun-Times

Since July 30, it’s been a steady ride full of mocking jokes and laughter from across the baseball world when the Chicago Cubs had, maybe, the largest sell-off in baseball history. More taunting has come in the past 48 hours with many teams agreeing to terms with marquee free agents, none including the Cubs.

However, the Cubs have made some noise on Tuesday, signing Clint Frazier and Yan Gomes. They also inked Locke St. John to a minor-league deal on Monday.

Don’t get me wrong, they are not flashy moves. Willson Contreras’ cryptic tweets after the Gomes signing definitely caused an eyebrow raise.

Nonetheless, Gomes is s solid backup option and should provide Contreras with more rest to perhaps not only stay healthy but also remain fresh throughout a 162-game stretch.

What’s Next? Carlos Correa?

It seems MLB and the Players Association are going to enter a lockout barring any kind of deal before the deadline. We’re approaching 12 hours before the CBA deadline.

Believe it or not, Carlos Correa has been linked to the Cubs by Ken Rosenthal because the star shortstop has stated he’s open to being part of a rebuilding team. ESPN 1000’s Jesse Rogers reiterated that Tuesday afternoon.

It makes a lot of sense for the Cubs to go after Correa. The Cubs have a slew of shortstop depth on the farm, but none are ready for the majors. He provides a bridge gap, but also a solid veteran presence for when they do arrive.

Marcus Stroman’s Market Seems Quiet

Just six days ago, Marcus Stroman was linked to the Cubs by MLB Trade Rumors. Not much has come to fruition since, but Stroman has already said love from Cubs fans on Twitter has been awesome.

Stroman would certainly help the pitching side of things and automatically slide him into the Cubs’ No. 1 starter role heading into Spring Training.

Seiya Suzuki Raises My Arm Hair

Seiya Suzuki is the most notable name in Japan to transition to MLB this offseason and the Cubs are linked to him, but he’s in no rush to sign before the lockout.

Suzuki, 27, finished his 2021 season in Japan with a .319/.436/.640 slash line and 38 homers on the way to becoming the most coveted international free agent this offseason.

Nick Castellanos, Kris Bryant, and Kyle Schwarber are Still Available

I feel like I’m beating a dead horse, but Nick Castellanos, Kris Bryant, and Kyle Schwarber are still available and one of the three makes plenty of sense for the Cubs. We’ve discussed why the Cubs need to at least call Bryant’s agent Scott Boras and how the Giants were unimpressed with him in the second half. We’ve discussed why Schwarber makes sense reuniting with the Cubs and we’ve yelled at the clouds about bringing Nick Castellanos back to the North Side.

Castellanos is reportedly looking for a seven- or eight-year contract. At 29 years old, I’m not sure if he will get that. However, Marcus Semien, 30, got a seven-year deal from the Rangers, so anything is possible. At this point, it seems the Giants and Marlins are interested in Castellanos.

However, I’m not sure why the Giants would want Castellanos in terms of outfield defense. We know how large the outfield is at Oracle Park. The Marlins have a history of giving long-term deals but ultimately trading highly convented players away. Giancarlo Stanton rings a bell regarding that point.

Nonetheless, the Marlins have shown they will pay players when they want to in their short history. I don’t see it in the cards and I especially don’t believe it will happen before the CBA deadline.

Bryant has been linked to the Mariners, Blue Jays, and Rockies. The Mets have been linked to Bryant since the trade deadline, so there may still be interest in the Big Apple. The Phillies have been linked because his best friend, Bryce Harper, is part of their team. Nonetheless, it doesn’t seem like Bryant will agree to terms with any team before the CBA deadline.

On Monday, Jon Heyman reported the Phillies’ and Marlins’ interest in Schwarber. The Red Sox are likely still a landing spot. Those all remain reports at this time as no heavy movement has come to fruition.

Who Else is Still Available?

I discussed why the Cubs should consider Chris Taylor recently, but it doesn’t seem they are showing much interest. Trevor Story is one major name no one is talking about. Kyle Seager at least perks my interest despite his age (34 years old). Corey Dickerson is also an interesting name that the Cubs could at least flip next summer, similarly to Joc Pederson this past season. Jorge Soler is still available, who we’ve discussed as a possibility for the Cubs. There are notable starting pitchers still available that the Cubs should consider, such as Carlos Rodon, Michael Pineda, or Alex Wood.

Landing Wade Miley was a really nice move, but this team desperately needs more pitching depth within their starting rotation.

Why This Matters?

There are many guys still available on the market. The Cubs need to do something and the wheels started moving on Tuesday, finally.

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