Top 5 Free Agents the Chicago Cubs Should Sign

Credit: Jonathon Daniel/Getty Images

Credit: Jonathon Daniel/Getty Images

Ben Zobrist

It is no secret that players that are on coach Joe Maddon‘s teams enjoy their time with the skipper. Zobrist had the pleasure of playing for Maddon while both were in Tampa Bay and it seems like a reunion could be in the works in Chicago. Zobrist has the ability to play multiple positions. The Cubs are currently stacked at the middle infield position, but things could change.

The likelihood of the Cubs dealing Javier Baez or Starlin Castro seems very high. Each have been constantly rumored in deals with numerous teams. If one or both were dealt, the club would have a need for a second baseman. Zobrist could also fill in for the Cubs in the outfield or even shortstop if needed. His veteran presence is what the team would covet the most.

The 34-year-old has many suitors this offseason. The Mets, San Francisco Giants, Kansas City Royals and Washington Nationals have all been linked to Zobrist so far. Since he has the ability to play multiple positions defensively, he fits the need for just about any Major League team. Zobrist made $7.5 million last year and will surely get a nice raise this winter. Will the Cubs be one of his biggest suitors? Only time will tell. If the Cubs deal Baez and/or Castro, don’t be shocked to see them go after Zobrist.

One Response

  1. Rqdbears

    James, right now the Cubs don’t have the ability to spend money you think like a big market team. In the purchase of the Cubs in 2010, the Ricketts, in order to get a lower purchase price and some tax breaks of their own, agreed to terms that would restrict what they could spend until 2019. They can only spend annually on baseball salaries what they generate in revenue plus 5 or 10% at most. The have to stay within certain debt ratios (deterrent revenue and costs), so that former owner Sam Zell can get a huge tax write off annually until 2019. So, the Cubs, in essence have a type of salary cap that no other team in MLB has.
    Now, they generate a lot of revenue, but to generate enough under the current sale contract restrictions to spend like a typical large market team and get multiple high priced free agents in any given year, they would have to get one of those huge, new TV deals, or start their own Cable channel/ network. Unfortunately, they are currently under contract with Comcast SportsNet until 2019. So, the Ricketts can’t spend whatever they want until then, even if they wanted to. Of course, they willingly put themselves in this predicament for business and financial reasons.
    So, they don’t publicize the situation much, because it is difficult to comprehend and would just tick off the fan base. Comcast also has no interest in clarifying the situation, as they would fear becoming the target of public pressure to redo their TV deal before the current one expires in 2019, to “help the Cubs out.”

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