One GM "Guarantees" the Cubs Will Sign One of the Three Big Free Agent Shortstops

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One GM “Guarantees” the Cubs Will Sign One of the Three Big Free Agent Shortstops

Chicago Cubs

Although Nico Hoerner has emerged this year as a clearly-big-league-caliber defensive shortstop, that doesn’t mean the Chicago Cubs would wholly sit out the upcoming shortstop free agent class. If there is a bat you like, then you sign the guy and worry about positional fits later, especially knowing that Hoerner can play exceptional second base (where Nick Madrigal certainly hasn’t cemented himself yet), and knowing that the shortstops in the upcoming class could also play third base.

That is all to say, if you are of the mind that the Cubs will be spending money this offseason – that has long been my expectation, and there are rumors of the same – there is no reason to ignore the shortstop market. Heck, it’s where some of the best bats reside this year.

Indeed, it’s going to be another good class at the position, with Trea Turner, Xander Bogaerts (opt-out), and Carlos Correa (opt-out) among the options hitting free agency after the season. And Bob Nightengale hears the Cubs will be in on them. In fact, one quote is as strong as the language can get:

The Chicago Cubs, in the middle of their rebuild, are poised to be major players in the free-agent market this winter.

They have their eyes on shortstop Trea Turner, Carlos Correa and Xander Bogaerts.

“I guarantee you they’re going to get one of them,’’ one veteran GM told USA TODAY Sports.

*Guarantee* the Cubs *get* one of them. Not just pursue. Get. Yo.

That’s bold. Probably TOO bold, since you can never actually guarantee a team will sign anyone. The most you could say is that the Cubs will definitely be very aggressive in the bidding, which may very well be true.

I don’t want to dig in too deeply on the individuals based on this stray rumor on June 5, because there’s a whole lot that can happen between now and the offseason. But I do think it is very reasonable to include this as a mental data point on where the Cubs see themselves, how rapidly they see coming out of this semi-rebuild, and what the national expectations are for the Cubs’ spending.

After slow-ish starts to the season for some of the group, it’s mostly been a success through June 5:

(via FanGraphs)

Lotta season still left, and there will be age considerations tied to the length of offers when free agency actually arrives (Turner turns 29 this month, Bogaerts turns 30 in October, Correa turns 28 in September). But, generally speaking, I’m certainly interested. There are fits here for the Cubs of 2023 and beyond, and I very much hope they are as interested as the rumors suggest.

It goes without saying that we’ll be tracking this one in the months ahead, and gleefully into the offseason.

Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.