With a team as terrible and overpriced as the Chicago Cubs presently appear to be, with an aging core, and with a promising set of youngsters, most teams would view the Cubs as an ideal rebuilding opportunity. Imagine the powerhouse the Cubs could be in two or three years if they sold off their expensive pieces, groomed young talent, and then spent up for free agents to pair with that young talent.
But imagining is all you can do, as current Cubs general manager Jim Hendry has no intention of rebuilding.
“I’m here to tell you it’s not some kind of a major rebuilding job,” Hendry told Bruce Miles of the Daily Herald yesterday. “When you start seeing the improvement in the young people that we have and the type of young arms that we have and the arms that we have coming, you make three or four solid moves in the off-season and your young guys keep developing, then you’re right back to being a contending team, and that’s the way we’re going to go about it.”
1. Jim, that’s the right idea, but you’re about two years premature.
2. Three or four “solid” moves? When I think solid moves, I think “Cliff Lee,” but I suspect Jim thinks “John Grabow.”
3. If there are to be three or four moves of any kind, maybe some will be trades, as there may not be three to four open spots on the Cubs. The outfield, third, short, second, catcher, four starting pitchers, and most of the bullpen are under contract and set. Hopefully that means there will be some trades, but I suppose it could simply mean signing a middling starting pitcher, an overpriced veteran reliever coming off a career year, and a first baseman.