MLB Chicago Cubs

Ranking the Chicago Cubs’ 5 Biggest Offseason Needs

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Chicago Cubs' 5 Biggest Offseason Needs

Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

It’s no secret to say that the Chicago Cubs have several weaknesses in their roster.

The Cubs were one of the worse teams in all of baseball last season and their record showed it, as they ended the year with a 66-96 win-loss total. They also traded several veterans for prospects to stock the farm system, and they lack leaders in the clubhouse.

They also have a stockpiled farm system with several prospects that should start arriving to the team between 2014 and 2015, but the team desperately needs to get veterans to start forming a winning culture once the prospects start to arrive since that’s the only way to start turning the corner.

Entering the third year of the rebuilding process, however, it’s safe to say that the Cubs are in much better shape now than they were a year ago. But they still have needs to fill on both sides of the ball. They had one of the worst offenses in the league, and while their defense is solid they could use some improvements especially in the outfield.

The Cubs also have a depleted rotation in comparison to what they had to start this past year. After trading Matt Garza and Scott Feldman the Cubs have only three starters who have their spots locked in, and it wouldn’t be strange to see arms arriving to the organization to bolster the team heading into next year.

Without further ado, join me through this slideshow as we check the five biggest offseason needs for the Chicago Cubs.

Juan Pablo Aravena is a sports writer for Follow him on Twitter @jparavenarant or add him to your network on Google

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5. Left-Handed Hitters

Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

The only left-handed hitter in the lineup is Anthony Rizzo. There’s no other consistent threat from that side, and the Cubs need desperately a guy from the opposite side of the plate to create some sort of balance in their lineup.

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4. Run Producers

Matt Barton - USA Today Sports

This team needs players that can hit with runners in scoring position to drive guys in. The Cubs ranked last 14th on total RBI and OBP, ahead of only the Miami Marlins in both categories. The Cubs have several guys that can send the ball into the bleachers, but they need to put the ball in play more to have more chances of winning.

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3. Outfield Help

Troy Taormina - USA TODAY Sports

Nate Schierholtz and Ryan Sweeney are two players poised to start in the outfield on Opening Day, but the spot in LF is open. Rookie Junior Lake played there last season, but the Cubs need an upgrade where Curtis Granderson could be an intriguing option as well as Chris Young.

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2. A Proven Starter

Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

The Cubs have three spots in the rotation locked up, and Jake Arrieta has a great chance to be the fourth starter. There’s one spot up for grabs, and players like Josh Johnson or Scott Kazmir could be great fits for the organization.

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1. A Potential Closer

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Starting last year Carlos Marmol was the closer and Kevin Gregg took over midway through the year. With both players gone the Cubs are in desperate need of a closer, and they might test the free agent market (where John Axford appears to be a solid option) to land one before trying to grow one internally.