Winter Meetings, Tuesday Night: More Moves Close, Swanson the Focus(?), Or Actually Correa(?), Pitching Targets, More

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Winter Meetings, Tuesday Night: More Moves Close, Swanson the Focus(?), Or Actually Correa(?), Pitching Targets, More

Chicago Cubs

Two deals for the Cubs so far today – Cody Bellinger on a one-year prove-it deal, and Brailyn Marquez re-signed to a minor league deal. Neither is enormous, but both are perfectly logical, reasonable, and offer some upside. A good start to the offseason from where I sit, though I know we’re all getting antsy for something bigger. Maybe soon …

  • As noted earlier, Chicago Cubs President of Baseball Operations Jed Hoyer said in his Marquee interview tonight that the Cubs are “close on a few deals,” which means we might see some more action soon. Hoyer was careful to say that they might not get everything done that they want to while at the meetings, but it definitely sounded like he knew some more was coming.
  • Hoyer also added that the focus is still free agency, not just for the Cubs but for almost all teams. That’s just where the heat is. He said he think trade activity will probably pick up later in the month and on into January.
  • Chicago Cubs GM Carter Hawkins, in his brief time with the Cubs, has always avoided getting too specific when discussing the teams’ plans. It’s something I’ve noticed. But tonight, when he was asked about the shortstop market, it was surprisingly candid: “We are actively involved in that market. Whether or not we’re gonna get one of those shortstop is TBD, but we’re certainly actively involved.”
  • I was pretty surprised that he said that, because even if it’s obvious at this point, the fact that he’s confirming it means the Cubs are still pushing to get at least one of the three. Hopefully the various meetings and recruitment efforts are helping.
  • Jon Morosi clocks Dansby Swanson as the shortstop “most likely” to wind up with the Cubs:
  • If Swanson winds up the shortstop the Cubs land – and the only shortstop the Cubs land – I will be happy about the move in isolation, but I’ll say it again: the big question is going to be how the team improves the offense. They’ll still need AT LEAST another big bat. I just have trouble seeing who/where that guy is if it’s not Correa or Bogaerts. (But hey, that’s the job of the front office to figure it out … )
  • Speaking of which, this sounds like preserving leverage to me:
  • Like, for example, hey Cubs, if you’re gonna ask my client to move to third base, you better be prepared to pay a little extra
  • On the CubsTalk Podcast, Gordon Wittenmyer stood by his reporting that the Cubs are most serious about Correa, with Swanson as their back-up plan. Wittenmyer really, strongly indicates he’s hearing that it’s Correa that the Cubs really want. Bogaerts, Wittenmyer hears, is more of a “kicking tires” situation, despite the reports of the Cubs going out on recruiting trips.
  • On the pitching side, Morosi echoed what we’ve heard elsewhere, that the second tier of starting pitching is moving, and he said the guy he is hearing about is Jameson Taillon for the Cubs (which Bruce Levine also said). That said, Morosi added that Kodai Senga is still a name to watch for the Cubs.
  • But the Mets might be in the hardest on Senga, who could take a while:
  • The Yankees and Giants are reportedly both talking to Carlos Correa and Carlos Rodon in the event the Aaron Judge decision doesn’t break their way.
  • After paying a whole lot to sign a mid-to-back-rotation arm in Taijuan Walker, the Phillies are also paying a lot to sign a middle-to-maybe-kinda-late-inning reliever:

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.