Today, the Cubs DNA team takes an early look at some of the impending decisions the front office will have to make. There are some players about to hit free agency that will be missed, but it may make sense to let them go. The rotation has a lot of impending turnover, with Lester, Chatwood, and Quintana all possibly becoming free agents. Time for a board room meeting. Here's each player who could hit free agency this year:
Jon Lester: Club option: $25m or $10m buyout
Staci: I think you buy him out and re-sign him to a cheap deal--think what the Yankees did with CC Sabathia. That way you not only keep his arm around, but his veteran leadership too.
Tina: Can we get him on the cheap? I'd love to see him retired in a Cubs uniform.
Pronk: $25m is just too much after a subpar season. That buyout will be a payroll hit too. If he can come back on a cheap deal to be the 5th starter, I'm game.
Steven: I love Jon and everything he did as a Cub but if he makes over $5m on a 1-year deal then the Cubs over paid. He has been trending down the last few years and I think it's time to give some of the prospects a chance to start.
Caleb: Pick up his option
Tyler Chatwood: Free Agent
Staci: I love Chatty, but unless he's willing to re-sign for cheap and go back to a swingman role, I think it's time for him to move on.
Tina: I'm with Staci, sign him on the cheap and keep him as a swingman. I loved what he did earlier in the season and think his story here is not done.
Pronk: I've seen enough. I wish him well, but am ready for a change of scenery.
Steven: I'm glad Chatwood improved compared to his start but the Cubs should move on.
Jose Quintana: Free Agent
Staci: I've always been a big fan of Q, but he's never really clicked in Chicago like they needed him to. My bet is that he moves on.
Tina: Q was solid, but I'm good with him moving on if he can get a better deal elsewhere
Pronk: It's really tough to tell what kind of deal he'll command after a injury hampered 2020. When he came back, he seemed to have enough to be productive. If his price tag is somewhere in the $8m AAV 2-3 year, $12-$20 range, I'm considering it. But if someone wants to throw 4 or more years and over $30 million at him, I'm out.
Steven: I think the Cubs should move on. Q never lived up to what he showed he was capable of when he pitched for the White Sox.
Anthony Rizzo: Club Option: $16.5m or $2m buyout
Staci: DON'T EVEN PUT THIS IN YO MOUTH.
Tina: CUB 4 LIFE, WHY IS THIS AN OPTION
Pronk: Club Option Baby.!
Steven: SIGN HIM FOR LIFE!
Caleb: Pick up his option
Jason Kipnis: Free Agent
Staci: Kip was fun! That said, it depends on the deal and whether we think we still need all those lefty bats. (I think what happens with guys like Schwarber might help determine this, too.) He clearly likes being on the team, so I think he re-signs for a cheap deal.
Tina: I'd re-sign him as a good bench bat and cheerleader. He clearly loves being a Cub.
Pronk: He made $1m in 2020. With Hoerner's struggles, and Kipnis's productive season, I bring him back. Maybe see what other options there are out there, because his 2020 might have been capturing lightning in a bottle.
Steven: Kipnis showed enough where I would be okay with him signing a cheap-bench role. Also it's cool that he is a Chicago guy (amazing we never heard about that during this season).
Caleb: Bring him back, another minor league deal
Billy Hamilton: Free Agent
Staci: He's definitely the best Speedy we've had! Let's bring him back!
Tina: Bring him back, I don't want him terrorizing us on another team.
Pronk: I want him back on a cheap deal. At age 30, he may slow down, but his defense and speed was a game changer. Particularly with Almora's struggles.
Steven: An elite defender and one of the fastest guys in baseball. If he is okay with a bench spot then bring him back.
Caleb: Bring him back on a minor league deal
Cameron Maybin: Free Agent
Staci: We have enough OF guys like Maybin... I think he moves on.
Tina: I like him as a person, but he wasn't impressive enough to want me to keep him. Won't miss him if he gets a better deal elsewhere.
Pronk: Pass. He didn't produce enough for me to want him back, even though he could be cheap OF depth.
Steven: I like Cameron a lot but I think he can get a starting role somewhere in baseball so the Cubs should move on.
Caleb: Bring him back
Daniel Descalso: Club Option: $3.5 or $1m buyout
Staci: See ya!
Tina: Smell ya later #notmyStepdaddy
Pronk: (chanting) BUYOUT! BUYOUT!
Steven: I mean is there really a discussion to be had? Buyout.