Winter Meetings Wednesday Night: Cubs Have to Head Down Various Paths, Available Trades, Glasnow, Stephenson, More

There will be more to say about the Winter Meetings, and the Juan Soto deal is still likely to be completed eventually … but man alive, that was absolutely the worst and most boring and awful Winter Meetings ever. Just a terrible, slow, uninteresting week.

Some bits to get into …

  • Jed Hoyer is not outright saying that the Cubs are out on Shohei Ohtani – and, to be clear, Hoyer has previously said the Cubs have not heard that they are out – but he is definitely making clear that the Cubs have to look at other paths:
  • You can take that discussion however you want, and you can hold onto optimism as long as you want. I won’t tell you not to. But I will give you my perspective on what I’ve seen, heard, and read, and that perspective is that the Cubs have decided that they are sufficiently unlikely to get Ohtani – zero-ish percent – that they have to get cracking on their other offseason plans.
  • Those plans, by the way, could afford them around $60 to $70 million in added 2024 dollars to spend from here (if missing out on Ohtani), according to Bruce Levine:
  • Dave Kaplan also seems to believe Ohtani isn’t happening for the Cubs – or at least that the Cubs are proceeding as though they believe it’s not happening – but he has been told that “significant” moves will nevertheless be on the way:
  • Kap mentions Tyler Glasnow, Isaac Paredes, and Bo Bichette by name as possible moves for the Cubs, and obviously some combination of additions there, plus complementary moves, could make for a strong offseason. If they added Glasnow and Bichette, plus maybe Rhys Hoskins and relievers? Pretty hard to stay upset, in my opinion. To be clear, that isn’t Kap saying all that is going to happen, only that it’s all still on the table, as well as other things.
  • Maybe not on the table anymore? Yoshinobu Yamamoto. There were hints earlier that the Cubs probably weren’t going to go to the $300 million level, and now they are no longer being listed as among the finalists.
  • We get it, Rays. You want the Cubs to add more:
  • Just get it done already. I’m sure the reported Soto return – massive for one expensive year of the player – has emboldened the Rays to really try to maximize the return on Glasnow. I get it. I don’t want to see the Cubs wildly overpay. But I do want to see this deal get done.
  • Cubs not listed on Robert Stephenson here, though they had been before:
  • Obviously that tweet doesn’t explicitly exclude the Cubs, though I wonder as I did when I first wrote him up just how aggressive some team out there will be on Stephenson. It could get very pricey if a team or two buys that the version he showed with the Rays is the guy he can be for the next several years (kinda hope that’s the Cubs, though … ).
  • It reminds me a bit of the situation with the Brandon Morrow signing after his very brief and late breakout with the Dodgers in 2017. The Cubs took the chance on signing him with limited data on how good he could be, and they were right and wrong. When he showed up and pitched for them in 2018, he absolutely looked like he had indeed become the dominant guy he showed with the Dodgers. Buuuuut then he broke, and wound up pitching just a few months of the two-year deal he’d signed.
  • Seems like the White Sox haven’t yet heard what they’ve wanted to hear on Dylan Cease this week:
  • Thought the Cubs might go after Adam Cimber because he was gonna be a cheap reclamation and he’s completely funky, but I also didn’t think he’d get a meaningful big league deal:
  • 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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