Tyson Ross reportedly reviewing his options as Cubs continues pursuit of right-hander
Reports have indicated at least 20 teams have checked in with free agent right-hander Tyson Ross. The Cubs have reportedly shown the most interest in Ross this off-season as he recovers from surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome. Ross had the surgery in October, which has a four- to six-month recovery time.
The Cubs have been trying to acquire Ross for at least 18 months. The Cubs know what Ross could add to one of the best clubhouses in baseball. And if he’s able to comeback from the injury that derailed his career last season, he could provide the Cubs with a much-needed starting pitcher.
According to a report from Comcast SportsNet, Ross is “said to be making a deliberate decision, going through a comprehensive review of his options.” Patrick Mooney indicated Ross “could be an X-factor” for the Cubs 2017 rotation.
Ross is not expected to make a decision until January.
The front office believes the Cubs are missing the rotation depth they will need next season in order for the team to defend its World Series title. The Cubs realize they have been extremely fortunate the last two seasons. The rotation has stayed healthy, on the mound and off the disabled list. The front office would like to make sure there is enough depth for the rotation to keep injuries from derailing the season.
The Cubs are also concerned about the rotation beyond next season. Jake Arrieta is under team control through the 2017 season and John Lackey has only one more season left on the two-year contract he signed last winter. There is a possibility the Cubs extend Arrieta before he hits free agency. But if that doesn’t happen before Spring Training it is likely Arrieta will become a free agent at the end of the year.
The Cubs are believed to be interested in Ross on a multi-year deal not a one-year contract that he is reportedly looking to sign. The Dallas Morning News reported Ross would prefer to sign a one-year deal in the $9-11 million range.
With Tyson Ross expected to miss at least some time at the beginning of the season, teams would like more control than just one year. A two-year commitment with a low base salary and a performance-based incentives package would seem to be a better situation for a team like the Cubs.