Cubs Fans… We Need To Talk

Baseball is back after a 99 day lockout and fans are now salivating on the potential moves their respected teams could make. This is probably one of the funniest times of the year for fans…if your team is spending money. 

The Cubs started their pre-lockout offseason off with a bang. Signing veteran catcher Yan Gomes to a 2 year deal ($12 million), along with picking up Wade Miley from waivers (1 year $10 million) and beating the pre-lockout deadline with a 3 year deal ($71 million)  of All-Star Pitcher Marcus Stroman. Cubs fans were ecstatic about the signing and along with the Carlos Correa rumors fans were on cloud 9. For the first time in 4 years, the Cubs have enough payroll flexibility to spend significantly.  

When the lockout ended after 99 days, Cubs fans were wanting more. Would we sign Carlos Correa? Nick Castellanos? Bring back Anthony Rizzo or Kris Bryant?  Well then this happened..

The Cubs went out and signed Andrelton Simmons on an one year deal ($4 million). The thoughts of Correa then began to fade. Although there were reports that Correa could still be in play. Fans began to split into two sides. The angry crowd at not signing a potential generation talent after not even offering Bryce Harper, Manny Machado, or even team controlled Kris Bryant (yes I am saying he wasn’t offered a deal) deals. 

Then there was the other side of the crowd. The crowd that was more incline to be ok to go with a full rebuild. A full rebuild that we were told was not coming. 

In reference to the Cubs’ previous rebuild, Ricketts also wrote: “You believed in our plan to win and trusted us to deliver on our commitment to play championship baseball in the greatest ballpark in America. We did, and I assure you, we will do it again soon."

Yet I am constanly seeing people on twitter saying that the Cubs are 2-3 years away so why spend the money? 

So lets have a heart to heart here. The Cubs play in the 3rd largest market in the United States. They currently have a net worth of $3.36 billion. The Ricketts family spent over 100% of their budget rebuilding Wrigley Field and buying property around the area. Now they want to buy English Football Club Chelsea for a whopping $4 Billion. 

The Cubs owners have the money to spend. Their previous excuses were that they were broke due to the pandemic (where their team value actual went up) or the Luxury Tax. Well the new CBA raised the levels to $230 million for the first level. Something the Cubs currently stand, even after all those moves, about 125 Million dollars below (counting estimated arbitration). 

Baseball Reference

My point being why should the Cubs continue to tear down the team and do rebuilds. As stated before the Cubs are a big market team and with the new CBA, big market teams cannot be in the top 10 draft lottery consecutive years. Why not spend that extra money for generation talent and compete? Why do we have to settle for, well lets just rebuild and spend money when we are close? 

A team like the Cubs should be spending yearly and competing yearly. Remember when they were owned by the Tribune company? How fans cried, “I wish they would spend!” I was one of them and don’t get me wrong, the Ricketts spent after the first rebuild in 2012. However after 2018 they decided to stop spending due to the Luxury tax in a window. Well the Cubs have an estimated payroll of $110 million in 2023 and $72 million in 2024 with arb estimates. What is their excuse now? 

We as fans should not settle for the wait and see approach, especially with a team that makes hand over fist money like the Chicago Cubs. It’s time to start acting like the Big Market Club they are. It’s time to start acting like the Dodgers and Yankees. They have the assets and there is no reason for them not to. 

The Cubs may not win a World Series this year. However as Theo Epstein said, “Make the playoffs and anything can happen.” So why not compete every year and still fill in your team with homegrown talent? Why is it ok for the Dodgers, but not for us? These are some questions we need to ask ourselves Cubs fans. 

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