Chicago Cubs president Theo Epstein said he wouldn’t be surprised if his club signs "a free agent or two" this winter to help fill out their rotation, reports Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times:
‘‘There are going to be a lot of teams looking at a pretty limited field,’’ Epstein said. ‘‘I don’t think there’s going to be great value to be had out there. But I think there’s some quality, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see us sign a free agent or two for our rotation.’’
While Epstein characterized the free agent market for starting pitching as "pretty limited," he did say that there are some "quality" arms to be found. He’s not sure the value these pitchers will represent, something that figures to go a long way in determining which pitcher(s) the Cubs sign.
Wittenmyer notes that Chicago will have to acquire at least two, and probably three, starting pitchers to "merely put a representative team on the field." Chicago got creative last winter, signing veteran Paul Maholm and trading for Travis Wood and Chris Volstad.
Wittenmyer says high-profile free agent arms such as Jake Peavy and Zack Greinke aren’t on the Cubs’ radar. He could, however, see the team target other free agent starters such as Shaun Marcum and Anibal Sanchez.