Obsessive Shortstop Watch: Still Hope for Correa? Yankees Out, Steep Competition for Swanson (Decision Soon?), More

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Obsessive Shortstop Watch: Still Hope for Correa? Yankees Out, Steep Competition for Swanson (Decision Soon?), More

Chicago Cubs

About one week ago, the thought of writing up another Obsessive Shortstop Watch post was so exciting. The field of available players was wider, there were rumors that Tom Ricketts had opened up the checkbook, so to speak, and the Cubs were firmly in the running for pretty much every player besides Trea Turner. There was even talk of landing TWO shortstops (I don’t know if we ever actually believed that, but we were having fun!). A week later, and this feels like a chore.

But there is some stuff out there and it’s not all bad news, so let’s get into it.

  • Despite his significant MLB background, Jim Bowden has not always been the most prescient MLB analyst out there. But he does have still have significant connections within the game and a large platform (The Athletic) by which to relay that information. So you don’t want to just ignore him, either. I present that caveat upfront, because his latest is … unusually optimistic for the Chicago Cubs.

Carlos Correa is the top position player left on the free-agent market and at least six teams are interested in him, according to team sources. There have been indications the Twins and Cubs have the inside track, but it only takes one owner from another team to step up at the last minute to change the equation and pull off a deal.

  • Okay. Wow. It’s obviously not good news to hear that his market may be as wide as SIX teams, but the Cubs get the namecheck treatment alongside the Twins, who have been right there all along. For what it’s worth, Bowden also lists the Giants (definitely makes sense), the Braves and Red Sox (eh…I can see it, but not likely), plus the Angels and Tigers (nah …).
  • One team missing from that group? The New York Yankees. And it seems Bowden is not alone on that.
  • The New York Yankees are reportedly “not in” on Carlos Correa. I think we all probably assumed that after they signed Aaron Judge, but it’s nice to get some confirmation. At the same time, the Cubs’ top competition on Correa has long been seen as the Giants and Twins, so … maybe this is just meh news.
  • Speaking of which, At the New York Post, Jon Heyman delivers an update on the two remaining free agent shortstops, and for the Cubs, it’s sort of a mixed bag. Actually, maybe it’s just bad news.

The Giants and incumbent Twins are among teams locked in bidding for Correa, the top remaining shortstop on a market that once saw four All-Star shortstops free. Dansby Swanson remains a free agent, and the Cubs are a candidate to sign him, possibly along with the Dodgers, Red Sox and second-place finisher for Correa.

  • So the Cubs are not listed on Correa and they will have to go up against the deep pockets of the Dodgers and Red Sox plus one of the Twins/Giants for Swanson, the fourth best option. Cool. Cool-cool-cool. Everything’s cool.
  • For what it’s worth, Bowden says “The Cubs appear to be the most likely to sign Swanson if they don’t get Carlos Correa.” He also name checks the Giants, Red Sox, Twins, and Cardinals. I think the first three make sense, I think the Cardinals are out on Swanson (and especially Correa) after spending on Willson Contreras.
  • And just as I click publish, Russell Dorsey drops this:
  • This certainly has the vibe of something barreling towards a conclusion. Buckle up.

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Author: Michael Cerami

Michael Cerami covers the Chicago Cubs, Bears, and Bulls at Bleacher Nation. You can find him on Twitter @Michael_Cerami