Tuesday, October 7, 2008

What Happens To The Starting Rotation?

The 2008 Chicago Cubs starting rotation was at or near the top of the league all year long. If there is one area of the Cubs that needs the least tinkering. Dempster is a free agent, Harden has an option the Cubs could pick up, Marquis is in his walk year and Zambrano and Lilly seem to be no brainers.

Although Dempster seemed to have crumbled in the bright spotlight of the postseason, his value this year was undeniable. Much will depend on what the terms are of resigning him. If other options are available the Cubs need to look at them, but barring any outrageous hard line negotiations, I think he deserves to be resigned and will be a valuable asset to the team.

Harden has ace like stuff but his durability has to be a concern. I can't see how his option can be picked up when the Cubs can and should make a run at Sabathia. As valuable as Harden can be, do we really want to be holding our breath when his next start will be?

Marquis may have been more effective than any other fifth starter in baseball, but if trading him can improve the team elsewhere, Marshall seems more than ready to fill that role.

The following is a list of the potential free agent starting pitchers available this off season...

Kris Benson PHI
A.J. Burnett TOR (may opt out)
Paul Byrd BOS
Ryan Dempster CHC
Jon Garland LAA
Tom Glavine ATL
Mike Hampton * ATL
Rich Harden * CHC
Orlando Hernandez NYM
Jason Jennings TEX
Randy Johnson ARZ
John Lackey * LAA
Esteban Loaiza CHW
Braden Looper STL
Derek Lowe LAD
Pedro Martinez NYM
Mike Mussina NYY
Jamie Moyer PHI
Mark Mulder * STL
Carl Pavano NYY
Brad Penny * LAD
Odalis Perez WAS
Oliver Perez NYM
Andy Pettitte NYY
Mark Prior SD
Horacio Ramirez CHW
C.C. Sabathia MIL
Ben Sheets MIL
John Smoltz * ATL
Julian Tavarez ATL
Steve Trachsel BAL
Brett Tomko SD
Claudio Vargas MIL
Randy Wolf HOU

So share your thoughts folks and we will discuss the bullpen next.

No comments: