Theo Epstein and the Chicago Cubs are heading into the MLB offseason looking to make some big moves. After being handled easily by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NLCS, the Cubs know that they will have to make some major moves in order to get back to the top of the National League and into the World Series.
Chicago has already made it clear that they are willing to move some of their major-league talent in order to bring in a big name or two. That alone should excite the fans for the offseason.
Looking at free agency, there are not a lot of players who look like major impact fits for the Cubs. On the trade market, however, Epstein could look to make some aggressive moves. Having trade chips like Kyle Schwarber, Javier Baez, and Addison Russell certainly could give the Cubs a good chance to acquire a star.
It will be an intriguing offseason, to say the least. There are quite a few teams that could look to shop some of their bigger stars in trade talks.
All of that being said, which players could the Chicago Cubs target if they do try to make a blockbuster trade this offseason?
Chris Archer, Tampa Bay Rays
Obviously, Chris Archer has to be on this list. Jake Arrieta and John Lackey are free agents, and neither is expected to return to the Cubs next season. Acquiring Archer would give the Cubs another controllable long-term arm that would immediately slide in and fit perfectly as the No. 4 arm in their rotation.
Marcus Stroman, Toronto Blue Jays
Adding another big name to the list, Toronto starting pitcher Marcus Stroman would be an ideal trade target for the Cubs. He finished the 2017 season with a 13-9 record to go along with a 3.09 ERA. Stroman would be a huge pickup for the Cubs’ rotation and would make them a much more dangerous World Series contender.
Giancarlo Stanton, Miami Marlins
Could the Cubs get involved in trade discussions for Giancarlo Stanton? At this point, they don’t appear to be seriously interested, but it would be an intriguing fit. Stanton at Wrigley Field would be a nightmare for opposing pitching, and he would give the Cubs the veteran slugger that they can rely on alongside Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo.
Dellin Betances, New York Yankees
It was obvious last season that the Cubs needed a major upgrade to their bullpen. Adding a talent like Dellin Betances would be a huge step in that direction, although the Cubs would likely have to give up a piece like Schwarber to get it done. New York may not be interested in trading him, but it wouldn’t be shocking to see the Cubs check in with them.
Expect to see the Cubs make a big move or two this offseason. Epstein knows that his team needs a bit of a re-tool and the trade market is the best way for Chicago to do that.
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