The front office would like to add one, if not two starters to the roster this winter. Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer are believed to be looking at a top of the rotation-type pitcher from outside of the organization and the list of possibilities likely include Jon Lester, James Shields and Cole Hamels.
As Theo Epstein recently said, “If you are here to compete which means you need depth, you need impact, you need back-up plans, you need redundancy. I think we have room for two starting pitchers. In an ideal off-season we will sign two starting pitchers.”
While the Cubs seemingly have room for two top of the rotation starters on the payroll, the front office is believed to be looking at the second-tier of free agent starting pitchers which includes Jason Hammel, Justin Masterson, Francisco Liriano, Brandon McCarthy and Jake Peavy.
The Cubs have been connected rather heavily to Jason Hammel and Justin Masterson. The current interest in Francisco Liriano and Brandon McCarthy is unknown. But the Cubs were linked to Liriano and McCarthy two years ago.
The familiar name of Jake Peavy could be a fallback plan for the Cubs, according to the Tribune, if the bidding for Jon Lester gets out of hand this winter.
Jim Hendry went all out for Jake Peavy following the 2008 playoffs when the Cubs were swept by the Dodgers and Lou Piniella demanded a true No. 1 pitcher for his rotation. The deal with the Padres for Peavy appeared to be done at the Winter Meetings before Hendry had his budget unexpectedly cut for the 2009 season. Peavy did not end up with the Cubs, but he was traded to the South Side instead prior to the 2009 deadline.
Paul Sullivan reported last weekend that the Giants’ game two starter would still like to call Wrigley Field his home park and pitch for the Cubs.
Jake Peavy could be in high demand this winter after his resurgence in the National League with the Giants. Peavy was 6-4 in 12 starts after the trade with Boston and allowed 24 runs, 19 earned, on 65 hits with 17 walks and 58 strikeouts in 78 2/3 innings (2.17 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, 3.03 FIP).
At this point in his career, Jake Peavy should sign with a National League team. Even during his not-so-good years in the American League, Peavy put together solid outings in National League parks when he was able to use the weaker lineups to his advantage.
Nick Cafardo reported the Giants “will likely have to bite on a Peavy deal” because San Francisco “likely won’t re-sign Ryan Vogelsong.” And it could take a three-year, $36 million contract for the Brian Sabean to keep the 33-year old right hander in a Giants’ uniform.
The Cubs’ front office does not have a direct connection to Jake Peavy, like Jason Hammel and Justin Masterson, but Rick Renteria does from his days with Peavy in San Diego.
For his career, Jake Peavy is 98-72 as a starter (224 games) on a National League team with a 3.23 ERA, 1.18 WHIP and a 3.44 WHIP. And at Wrigley Field, Peavy is 4-3 in nine starts with a 3.78 ERA and a 1.36 WHIP.
It could be another winter with Jake Peavy in the Cubs rumor mill …