Jed Hoyer Speaks: Readiness for Deals, More Pitcher Additions, Lots of Catcher Targets, More

The Chicago Cubs’ GM popped on 670 The Score this afternoon, and Jed Hoyer got into the Cubs’ Trade Deadline status a bit, among other things.

You can listen to the full interview here, but I’ll paraphrase some of the notable bits below, with my immediate thoughts and reactions …

  • Even as the Cubs have made a big move, they are still on the phone a ton, in the office very late, being creative about possible moves, and making sure they’re scouting the right places. Even though the trade for Jose Quintana will probably prove to be the Cubs’ big trade of the season, that’s not necessarily a guarantee – and you’ve got to be ready. Hoyer suggested, though, that his best guess right now is that other moves will be smaller in scale.
  • Specifically, Hoyer said that the Cubs have talked to teams about four-ish (sounded like it was a little more than four) veteran back-up catcher options, and he didn’t hide the fact that it’s something the Cubs really want to make happen before the deadline. You can pretty much expect a trade for a catcher at this point.
  • In the bullpen, which Hoyer said has been underrated all year, the Cubs will consider adding an arm that complements the group they already have, perhaps targeting a guy who is good at getting out certain types of hitters the Cubs don’t do as well with right now (wonder if that means a lefty is preferable). Now is the time you can freely get depth, so you’ve got to consider making a move before the July 31st Trade Deadline passes.
  • On the subject of acquiring more starting pitching right now, Hoyer pointed to the fact that you never feel like you have enough pitching depth, and the danger, again, is that if you don’t get more before the July 31 Trade Deadline, it becomes much harder to pull it off in August. Trading for Jose Quintana was probably the Cubs’ big move, but that doesn’t mean they won’t still be considering their options on the starting pitching side going forward. Things look great in the rotation right now – but the tricky part is planning for contingencies – are the Cubs totally covered if a nightmare scenario of a key injury (or injuries) happens?
  • Then again, Hoyer pointed out that there are other times in the year when you can acquire talent, so you don’t want to talk yourself into a mistake at the Trade Deadline. The Cubs will need to pick up more pitching before the 2018 season, without question, but they don’t have to trade for it this week, especially after already moving for Quintana.
  • The rumor mill is often an alternate universe from what’s actually happening, according to Hoyer – a lot of what happens never actually even gets reported. It’s fun for fans, but the front office has to insulate themselves somewhat because a lot of what’s out there is agenda driven. Always worth us remembering, even as we still like to have fun with rumor season.
  • Interestingly, on the Quintana trade: Hoyer says the Cubs weren’t necessarily expecting to make their big move at the break, and were instead thinking they would have to play well out of the break and then target a big arm at the deadline … but the White Sox kind of set the timeline on that deal, so it played out how it played out. Good thing it did, since Quintana seemed to provide an immediate spark, and also has pitched very well through his first two starts.
  • My favorite part of the interview, though, was probably this:
  • written by

    Brett Taylor is the Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and on LinkedIn here. Brett is also the founder of Bleacher Nation, which opened up shop in 2008 as an independent blog about the Chicago Cubs. Later growing to incorporate coverage of other Chicago sports, Bleacher Nation is now one of the largest regional sports blogs on the web.

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