The Cubs have been considered the frontrunner to land David Price for quite some time. Price has been high on the front office’s list of starting pitchers for years. And Price has done nothing to quiet his desire to pitch for the Cubs, especially after Joe Maddon was hired.
Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer have not hidden the fact the front office plans to add as much pitching to the roster as possible this winter. The Cubs are expected to spend money on a free agent starter or two, perhaps acquire young controllable pitching in trade and find value with pitchers like they did during the season in Clayton Richard and Trevor Cahill.
In a report in which he took a look at five teams that should join the David Price and Zack Greinke sweepstakes, Ken Rosenthal said, “If I had to bet, I would bet on Price to the Cubs and Greinke to the Giants.” Rosenthal has been constant in reporting the Cubs are the favorites to sign Price based on the information he’s gathered.
Six teams are considered realistic landing spots for David Price with the Cubs at the top of the list. The Red Sox, Cardinals, Dodgers, Giants and Blue Jays have been connected to Price by the mainstream media, have the money to sign him and Price has ties to three of those five teams.
Signing the lefty that could win his second AL Cy Young Award on Wednesday is going to come with a hefty price tag. Most are predicting Price will sign for at least seven years with an AAV around $30 million. Jim Bowden’s latest predictions has David Price inking a deal with a $30.5 million AAV and Zack Greinke signing a contract with a $31 million AAV (annual average value) for six years.
With the Winter Meetings three weeks away and most free agents preferring to sign before the holidays, David Price should make a decision in the next month. And it will be interesting to see which front office and ownership make the financial commitment to put their team in a better position to reach the ultimate goal.
Ben Zobrist and Gerardo Parra
The Cubs are exploring ways to improve on the position player side, especially in center field with Dexter Fowler a free agent and expected to sign with another team.
There is reportedly mutual interest in Ben Zobrist signing with the Cubs. Zobrist is a favorite of Joe Maddon and he would like to play in Chicago. Zobrist is looking for a team with a chance to win throughout what will likely be his last multi-year contract and the Cubs can offer him that opportunity.
The Mets are one of several teams that have talked to his agent, Alan Nero, and are very interested in signing Zobrist. The Mets tried to acquire him from the A’s prior to the deadline but were unable to meet the price the Royals paid for the two month rental.
According to a report from Newsday, Zobrist would help fill the void at second base for loss of Daniel Murphy and could provide insurance at third base for David Wright.
The Cubs have looked into Gerardo Parra as an option for center field. And the Mets are interested in the former Diamondback-Brewer-Oriole outfielder. The Mets view him, according to Newsday, as a possible platoon partner for Juan Lagares in center. The Mets apparently like the Cubs think Parra can play center field despite being suited better for a corner outfield spot.