Ever since Bryce Harper named his dog "Wrigley," rumors have been flying around the North side of Chicago about the superstar possibly signing with the Cubs. Recently, reports surfaced that Theo Epstein asked Harper to hold off on signing while Epstein tries to clear cap space. Even so, signing Harper is not a feasible, nor really beneficial, option for the Cubs. Here are three reasons why Harper to the Cubs is nonsensical.
3. The Cubs Outfield is Already Overflowing
With talented players such as Albert Almora Jr., Kyle Schwarber, Ian Happ, Ben Zobrist, Jason Heyward, and occasionally Kris Bryant or Willson Contreras in left field, the Cubs' outfield is already overflowing. The Cubs are still high on the upside of many of these younger, cheaper players and would likely prefer to bet on the talent already in house as opposed to dishing out one of the biggest contracts ever.
2. The Cubs Are Still a Great Team
In a year in which the offense "broke," the starting pitching faltered, and the Cubs were forced to play an absurd 40 games in 41 days to finish the season, the Cubs still won 95 games. The biggest effect of signing Harper would likely be trading some key players from last year. This might actually make the Cubs a worse team due to the amount of talent they would have to give away.
1. The Cubs Don't Have the Money
Last year, the Cubs were big spenders in free agency, dishing out $185 million to Brandon Morrow, Tyler Chatwood, and Yu Darvish. Two of those pitchers were hurt the majority of the year, and Chatwood forgot what a strike is. The Cubs are likely unwilling to spend big on another marquee free agent after signing so many busts recently. Currently, the Cubs owe $224,467,000 in 2019, just under the second luxury tax threshold of $226,000,000.
Throughout the entire offseason the Cubs have preached patience, reasoning that the biggest improvements would come from within. Signing Harper to a massive contract goes against everything that the Cubs have said so far, so why should fans expect anything different? Losing out on Harper may not be the worst thing for the Cubs, as they will be able to retain, and further develop, their young, talented, core.