Top 5 Free Agents the Chicago Cubs Should Sign

Credit: Aaron Doster/AP Photo

Credit: Aaron Doster/AP Photo

Denard Span

Replacing Dexter Fowler who should leave via free agency will be a tough task. However, Denard Span might just be the perfect fit for the Cubs. He would be an effective weapon at the top of the order for the team and would be a lot cheaper than trying to re-sign Fowler. Not that the Cubs need to save money, but you could the same bang for the buck with Span opposed to Fowler.

Span has a career .352 on base percentage and has 152 career stolen bases. He missed a lot of last season due to multiple injuries, but did play in 61 games batting .301 with a .365 on base percentage. Span walks and puts the ball in play. He is a true leadoff hitter and those type of players are getting harder and harder to find each season. He also plays an excellent defense in center field.

Span earned $9 million dollars this season in his last year of arbitration. He will likely get a small raise from that and could get three to four years minimum. He has rare traits and a team could easily fall in love with his leadoff skill. Span is 31 and has some injury concerns. His speed makes up his game so there are some red flags to signing him long-term. Like any ball player there are negatives to him as a player, but he does have a rare gift. Getting on base and scoring runs is something that cannot be taken lightly.

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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