Jed Hoyer more or less admitted the other day that he was working to add a lefty reliever, and that market has been cut in half over the last few hours. Salary expectations have dropped precipitously as well, so it looks like the timing is right for the Cubs to make their move.
Will Smith agreed to a one-year deal with the Rangers that guarantees him just $1.5 million and could jump to $2.5 million with incentives. Not long after, the Rockies announced a one-year deal with Brad Hand worth $2 million. While neither was expected to command as much as Andrew Chafin or Matt Moore, I don’t think anyone had them getting four times less.
Given the latest deals and the fact that we’re more than a week into spring games now, you have to think Mike Minor and Zack Britton are looking at something in that same range. Britton had reportedly been seeking around $9 million in AAV, which is even more out of the question now than it was back in January. The combination of poor performance and spotty health means he’ll probably need to accept a low salary with incentives.
This is me taking yet another whack at a horse that keeled over a long time ago, but I’d be surprised at this point if the Cubs don’t sign Britton. Or perhaps I should echo Hoyer by saying I “wouldn’t be shocked” if Britton showed up in camp.