The Chicago Cubs made a number of upgrades this offseason as they continue to remain active in the MLB market. The team acquired stars in Ben Zobrist and Jason Heyward while trading away Starlin Castro. However, they are not planning on stopping there just yet. With Zobrist taking over the infield and Heyward being inserted into the outfield, the Cubs are trying to figure out what to do with both Javier Baez and Jorge Soler as trade talk circles both players.
According to the Chicago Sun-Times, the Cubs are still actively listening to offers for both Baez and Soler after making the deals for Zobrist and Heyward official. With their position players set, the Cubs are looking for another pitching arm to round out their offseason and the belief is that either Baez or Soler can bring them that.
The Sun-Times follows up that report saying a deal for Soler seems like the most likely option for the Cubs as interest is high in the outfielder. The San Diego Padres have eyed a deal involving Tyson Ross while the Cleveland Indians could offer up Carlos Carrasco. The Cubs have also eyed trade deals for Julio Teheran, but it is unlikely the Atlanta Braves are looking to shop him at this time. Teheran would be a nice option to put against aging pitchers like Jake Arrieta and John Lackey.
According to ESPN.com, the Cubs should shop Soler to the Braves, but not for a pitcher. David Schoenfield reports that the Cubs should eye Ender Inciarte in the deal to help their win-now mentality. As of right now, the Cubs are aiming to move Jason Heyward over to center field, but the team would be better if they kept him in right. Inciarte is a true center-fielder that would pair well with Heyward while Soler is the young talent the Atlanta Braves keep looking for.
Team president Theo Epstein knows that the Cubs have committed a lot to money which is why trades will be how they get another pitching arm. The team has shown interest in Ross and Carrasco before and could easily do so again. They might have to wait for the market to develop a little more, but Epstein stresses that he likes the freedom the team has created for themselves this offseason.
"We've committed a lot of resources this offseason, mainly money," Epstein said, via ESPN.com. "As a result, we haven't touched our base of young players outside of Starlin Castro. That allows us, whether it's this winter or the trade deadline or next offseason, to be a threat to make significant trades that can help the ballclub moving forward. It doesn't necessarily have to happen the next couple of months. Let's go play."