It is officially the offseason, at least as far as the Chicago Cubs are concerned. And with the offseason comes all kinds of unsolicited advice on what moves the Cubs should make to improve the club for next year.
When that unsolicited advice comes from, say, a message board, it doesn’t carry much weight. But when it comes from, say, Ted Lilly, it’s a little more intriguing.
Lilly’s wish is for the Cubs to re-sign Reed Johnson, who becomes a free agent in November. But he also said it would be prudent to consider bringing back Mark DeRosa, who left a void in the clubhouse when he was traded to the Indians last winter.
“I love Mark as a player, a person, a clubhouse guy,” Lilly said. “I could say he’s probably the best teammate I’ve ever had. All around, he really cares a great deal about everybody, and that’s the kind of person he is. I think he also leads by example — the way he plays. He’s a special individual.” chicagotribune.com.
DeRosa will be 35 next year, and is expected to received a multiyear deal worth upwards of $7 to 8 million per year. His value is unquestioned, but for that kind of scratch, you’d like to be bringing in a starter. And if DeRosa becomes a starter, he’s not doing what he does best.
Johnson, similarly versatile but limited to the outfield, likely will get a one-year deal for $1 million or less.