Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Free Agent Players Cubs and White Sox Should Target in 2021-22 Offseason


As a fan of any team there comes a point during the playoffs when you get jealous. I mean, damn as a Cubs fan it seemed like every ex-player hit a home run this postseason. You look at the Braves and what they did at the trade deadline and if you’re a White Sox fan you’re probably wondering why the hell didn’t your deals work out like Atlanta’s.

We’re in the midst of the World Series between the Astros and Braves, so the free agency buzz still hasn’t kicked off and a possible work stoppage could certainly damper the mood if we get an even slower offseason that years past. However, we are in that sweet spot where we can dare to dream about what our teams could do in free agency.

Trust me, I get it. Maybe you’re done fantasizing about the Cubs doing anything of significance after sitting out on big free agents for four years or maybe you don’t think the White Sox will go all out because…they never really have. But hey, what’s the point of being a fan if you can’t make up hypotheticals in your head and then get mad when they don’t happen.

For the most part though, these moves are kinda no-brainers.

Let’s begin with the White Sox.

You guys are actually pretty lucky in the sense that you don’t need improvement in a lot of areas. There’s no desperation to get one of the big free agents this offseason, but that doesn’t mean Rick Hahn and co. shouldn’t be trying.

It seems like the White Sox have had the same issues to address on offense for a few years: right field and second base. But the perfect target plays in right. Yeah, you could pencil in Andrew Vaughn in right field and he should improve upon his below average rookie season. Or you know, the White Sox could finally make the big move and sign Nick Castellanos.

The soon-to-be former Reds right fielder is an ideal guy to get on the White Sox in 2022. Since 2016, when he was still with the Tigers, Castellanos has been at least 11% better than the league as a hitter besides the shortened 2020 season, when he was right at league average. A proven run producer that can fit anywhere in the lineup and offer protection for guys like Jose Abreu and Eloy Jimenez.

Do it Jerry, open up the wallet.

And speaking of opening up the wallet, let’s get to the Cubs.

The 2018-19 offseason absolutely broke me as a Cubs fan. Coming off a brutal loss in the Wild Card Game to the Rockies, the Cubs had every excuse to go out there and sign a premiere free agent to shake things up on offense. And it’s not like we were talking about free agents who were past their prime or maybe close to it. No. Manny Machado and Bryce Harper were guys in their mid-20s, who both have plenty of valuable years left in them.

The Cubs never tried to sign either of them. Well, guess what, they have another chance this year.

I like Nico Hoerner. I think he’ll be a decent offensive player and I love his defense at second base. I like Nick Madrigal. He’s an extremely pesky hitter and should provide much-needed balance in the lineup. As of right now, those two guys are the starting middle infield for the Cubs and I guess this goes for Hoerner because he’s the shortstop, but he shouldn’t prevent the team from pursuing any of the top free agent shortstops. Neither should prospects Cristian Hernandez or Ed Howard deter the front office from targeting a top tier talent at the same position.

Honestly, I’d be fine with any of the top shortstops, but damnit as much as he’s disliked because of the cheating scandal and its aftermath, get Carlos Correa to Wrigley Field ASAP.

Please, stop yourself from saying Correa doesn’t fit in with the timeline of the Cubs being a contender again. He just turned 27-years-old and there is no way anyone can tell me signing a guy with Correa’s talent doesn’t fit into a team’s plan.

We discussed our preferred free agent targets for the Cubs and White Sox on the latest episode of the Pinwheels and Ivy Podcast, plus some other goofy shit. Make sure to check it out and subscribe to our YouTube channel.

We stream live every Wednesday night, so join us when you can. And let us know, who’s your top free agent target this offseason?

Aldo Soto
“Sports are dumb and so much fun at the same time.” A lead writer at Sports Mockery for over five years.

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