Just because MLB Rumors season is about over, doesn’t mean we can’t still talk about a few this winter right? Everyone assumes the Chicago Cubs will continue to “rebuild” through the farm system, and that means the Cubs won’t look to spend any money, right? Wrong. In my opinion, the Cubs will be active this winter searching for the right pieces. Owner Tom Ricketts didn’t bring Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer in to rebuild for 3-4 years, and the Cubs are a big market team. With that being said, there’s two names I want the Cubs to take a long HARD look at this winter. Zack Greinke and Josh Hamilton (if available of course).
Let’s start with Greinke. Even though he was traded to the Los Angeles Angels, I’m not convinced he’s going to sign a “Cole Hamels” like deal with them. The Angels spent a TON of money last year so you have to wonder if they can afford Greinke. Zack Greinke has everything the Cubs need. He’s an ace, will take the ball every 5th day, and give you a chance to win. The Cubs do NOT have ANY top of the line rotation guys right now, and frankly- spending money on Greinke makes all the sense in the world to me. I doubt he would want to come to Chicago, but if he hits FA- the Cubs will absolutely make a move on him.
The next guy I want the Cubs to take a look at? Josh Hamilton of the Texas Rangers. Yup- that’s right. I’m not AT ALL concerned about his mid season slump, or his off the field troubles. This guy is probably the most talented god gifted player in all of baseball, and he would absolutely mash in the bandbox known as Wrigley Field. I believe Hamilton will fight his demons for the rest of his life, and has really grown up over the last few years. This guy is humbled, and has a strong supporting cast around him. He’s made some mistakes- who hasn’t? I can look past them because Josh Hamilton is a good person, and a good baseball player, and the Cubs need his bat in the middle.
Oh but Gil- what about Brett Jackson? Yeah- he can play right field. Oh Gil- What about Jorge Soler? He won’t be ready until 2014 right when Alfonso Soriano is about done. Hamilton would move to left, Jackson to right- in all liklihood.
Look- Josh Hamilton brings a middle of the order presence to the team, and will be able to protect Anthony Rizzo in the lineup as much as anyone. A lineup of Brett Jackson, Starlin Castro, Anthony Rizzo, and Josh Hamilton is pretty steller to me, and there’s no reason to shy away now. Heck, you can make a case that Hamilton’s stock has fallen so far- you might be able to get him for cheap.
All I’m saying- don’t expect this rebuilding thing to last a long time. The Cubs are going to continue building, but spending some money will make the process go faster.