Offseason Questions: Do Cubs Move A Shortstop?
Starlin Castro is coming off a bounce-back, All-Star campaign at age 24. We just told you that Castro is probably the best offensive shortstop in the game this side of 30.
You would think the future of the Cubs’ shortstop position would be a no-brainer proposition. Javy Baez, who many had viewed as the best option at the position, was already moved off the position this summer.
That move would appear to speak volumes; done deal, right?
Yet, with the Cubs acquiring top prospect Addison Russell this summer, we have to visit the very real questions that will be posed this offseason. Russell could be a special enough talent to make the Cubs think really hard about the future of the position; it is unanimous across the game that he is the best shortstop the Cubs possess.
But will the Cubs move someone from their talented inventory of the game’s most prime position this offseason?
Say they strike out on a free agent such as Jon Lester. Do they then turn to the trade market, dealing from the “currency” to cash in on an arm?
The Mets, Mariners, Marlins, and Nationals have been mentioned as teams who have shortstop needs and a suprlus of pitching. I heard just the other day that the Mets will be calling the Cubs as soon as the phone lines are open.
Will the Cubs listen?
Of course they will, but would they really consider moving Castro if a team makes a strong offer? My gut and hunch, based on a consensus of information, leads me to say no. Keep in mind, by the way, that Baez is way un-moveable on many levels right now and Russell is still not deemed MLB-ready.
I am starting to lose a grip on my fantasy of Russell, Baez and Castro all playing on the same diamond. There doesn’t appear to be much of chance any of the three will be moved to third base either. The Cubs want to see Kris Bryant succeed there, and it appears the organization truly views the middle as the only option for the talented trio, for now.
Someone may get moved soon, just don’t be quick to bet on the veteran.
Castro is developing into a perennial All-Star and the Cubs know what they have with him. He has also responded to recent challenges by improving his game, which was evident both on and off the field . Castro made 15 errors this season and cut down on the mental mistakes many will continue to lament.
Some in the industry still question whether Castro could ultimately bring the Cubs the type of pitcher they would require in return, yet I would argue he has re-established his value as a gifted young hitter, playing a primo position in an offensively-challenged climate.
Someone will pay for that dearly.
It may not shock anyone if the Cubs ended up cashing in on Castro’s bounce-back in value. However, it may surprise some to find out that the Cubs would find it difficult to let him get away. I’m told they like him. They really do.
The Mets are on line 4, Jed.