Hoyer insists Cubs plan to compete after dealing Darvish

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Jed Hoyer insists this time will not be like 2011 for the Chicago Cubs.

The group’s new president of baseball operations stated Wednesday that Chicago plans to retool moderately than convey out the wrecking ball the way in which it did 9 years in the past.

Nonetheless, this one will depart a mark.

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In his first main deal since changing good friend Theo Epstein, Hoyer despatched NL Cy Younger Award runner-up Yu Darvish and catcher Victor Caratini to the San Diego Padres for pitcher Zach Davies and 4 younger minor leaguers Tuesday evening.

On deck: Willson Contreras? Perhaps Kris Bryant, Javier Báez or Anthony Rizzo?

Nothing is off the desk, although Hoyer was adamant: The Cubs aren’t following the 2011 plan. That was the yr they employed Epstein and Hoyer, and the pair set the long-suffering franchise on a championship course by overhauling the farm system and revamping the entrance workplace. Alongside the way in which, Cubs followers endured a painful rebuild that included a 101-loss 2012 season.

“I am not going to run the identical playbook that we ran in 2011 and 2012,” stated Hoyer, who was promoted from basic supervisor when Epstein resigned in November. “I believe that might be silly. That playbook’s been copied so many instances, it does not work anymore.”

He stated he is attempting to maintain “one eye on the long run” whereas remaining aggressive within the NL Central. The Cubs gained the World Collection in 2016, ending a drought that dated to 1908, however they have not superior within the postseason because the 2017 group misplaced within the NL Championship Collection.

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Nonetheless led by the 2016 core of Rizzo, Bryant, Baez and others, Chicago gained the division in a pandemic-shortened 2020 season however was swept by Miami within the first spherical of the playoffs.

“We all know that we’re coming to the tip of this group of gamers — a wildly profitable, franchise-changing run with this group of gamers,” Hoyer stated. “As we come to the tip of that, it is actually essential to consider the long run.”

He cited the New York Yankees and Boston Crimson Sox as groups that benefited not too long ago from “a small reset.” And he stated the Cubs do not wish to fall off the way in which the San Francisco Giants, Philadelphia Phillies and Detroit Tigers over the previous decade.

The Cubs additionally wished so as to add to their minor league system, and the commerce with San Diego was a starting.

Davies, who was 7-4 with a 2.73 ERA in 12 begins, considerably offsets the lack of Darvish. The 27-year-old right-hander can turn into a free agent after subsequent season.

The 4 prospects the Cubs acquired — infielders Reginald Preciado, 17, and Yeison Santana, 20; and outfielders Owen Caissie, 18, and Ismael Mena, 18 — are seemingly years away from the majors. None had been among the many most prized in San Diego’s deep system. However Hoyer stated they’ll enhance Chicago’s.

“In a contracting monetary market … I do really feel like by definition persons are going to carry on tighter to these close-to-the-big-leagues prospects as a result of these are low cost, they’re proficient,” Hoyer stated. “As you in the reduction of cash, these guys turn into extra essential.”

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The Cubs declined veteran left-hander Jon Lester’s possibility for 2021 in October, permitting the five-time All-Star to turn into a free agent, they usually let outfielders Kyle Schwarber and Albert Almora Jr. go on Dec. 2.

The Darvish commerce is by far Hoyer’s greatest transfer, however extra main choices loom.

Bryant, Báez and Rizzo can turn into free brokers after subsequent season. Hoyer stated the Cubs have made “extremely aggressive” affords for contract extensions and can proceed to attempt to attain agreements with them.

“We’ve not gotten extensions, and in consequence, there are contractual realities to how lengthy we management a few of these gamers,” Hoyer stated. “I believe we might be silly to not hold that in thoughts as we transfer ahead.”

One other potential commerce goal may very well be Contreras. Hoyer referred to as reviews that the Cubs are procuring the two-time All-Star catcher “fictional.”

The Cubs have holes to deal with of their rotation behind Kyle Hendricks and Davies, with Lester, Jose Quintana and Tyler Chatwood gone to free company. Darvish had three years and $59 million left on the $126 million, six-year deal he signed with the Cubs earlier than the 2018 season.

“We all know we now have so as to add gamers via free company and we’ll be trying to try this,” Hoyer stated.

Roster points aren’t all of the Cubs have to deal with. There’s additionally a gap for a basic supervisor.

Hoyer stated that job most likely will not be stuffed till the summer season, when he hopes to have the ability to conduct interviews in particular person moderately than by Zoom. He stated the following GM will “undoubtedly” come from outdoors the group.

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“I really feel prefer it’s actually essential for me to spend time with the person who we will rent, to have the ability to have a number of dinners collectively, to fulfill their household,” Hoyer stated.

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