According to Gordon Wittenmyer, the Cubs are seriously interested in Jason Heyward, and could use the money saved by signing John Lackey to make it a reality.
"After landing starter John Lackey for a fraction of the dollars and years that went to top-name free agent pitchers, the Cubs are focusing the money they saved on trying to get top free agent outfielder Jason Heyward, sources say.
And getting Heyward -- or a Plan B option such as free agent Alex Gordon or Carlos Gomez (in a trade) -- could, in turn make a trade of right fielder Jorge Soler the next domino to fall in the off-season plans."
While Wittenmyer notes that signing Heyward could lead to a trade of Soler, Patrick Mooney of CSN Chicago reported a slightly different view of how the Cubs offseason could progress.
"The Cubs have envisioned Jason Heyward batting leadoff and playing center at Wrigley Field, according to a source familiar with the team's thinking"
Signing Heyward would likely make the Cubs the runaway favorite for the NL Central crown, as they won 97 games last year. If they could sign him to a deal, that would give Chicago an outfield of Kyle Schwarber in left, Heyward in center, and Soler in right.
In 2015, the Cubs posted the fourth highest offensive fWAR in baseball, and adding Heyward to their already potent lineup could give them the best offense in the National League.
Nothing appears imminent on the Heyward front, but the Cubs are undoubtedly a team to watch as his market becomes clearer.