Since last year ended it has been made clear that a formidable, left-handed hitting, right fielder was the Cubs number one priority (for the second year in a row btw). Seeing Joe Torre not make a pitching change for Fukudome was pretty much embarassing.
That said, and Raul Ibanez being signed, it appears that the Cubs are left with the following options (in alphabetical order):
Bobby Abreu http://www.baseball-reference.com/a/abreubo01.shtml
Milton Bradley http://www.baseball-reference.com/b/bradlmi01.shtml
Adam Dunn http://www.baseball-reference.com/d/dunnad01.shtml
Jeremy Hermida http://www.baseball-reference.com/h/hermije01.shtml
I have been bouncing between the four baseball reference pages for a while. All have pros and cons. And I know that people may be outraged to hear this because we have seen him play poor defense his whole career, but it seems evident to me that Adam Dunn would clearly be the best choice. Milton Bradley was a DH a lot and his D isnt much better. Abreu is a one time gold glover but is getting up there in age. Hermida seems to be good defensively but his offensive numbers don't come anywhere close to the other three (Especially Dunn). I feel the Cubs are still in a win now state of mind and that, to me, takes Hermida out of consideration.
Abreu had good offensive numbers last year and has for a while but we cannot forget that he is playing half his games in Yankee Stadium with a short right field porch and playing all his games with A-Rod behind him. He will be looking for a rather large multiyear deal despite the fact he will be turning 35 next season. No thank you.
Bradley had the best year of his career last year. Signing people coming off their best year is usually asking for disappointment (I don't see Soriano going 40-40 anytime soon). He also has a very tough time staying healthy. He's played 125 games or more twice in his 9 seasons. He also seems to be somewhat of a behavioral wild card. God forbid he game in and slumped in the first month. If we thought Jacque Jones reacted poorly to heckling just wait.
Then there is Dunn. Poor defense aside he is one of the best power hitters in the game the last 5 years. He has average more than 40 HR and 100 RBI in that span. "But he strikes out ll the time!" you say. Yes but, and I almost couldn't believe it either, he led the NL in walks last year. Despite BA consistently around .240 he still has OBP around .380 every year. Also, he is only 29. With pitching as good as we have I would sacrifice the D for a 40 HR and 100 RBI. Also, the way he hits in wrigley it could be 50 and 120.
I know this is a long post but this is undoubtedly the most important spot to fill for the Cubs this offseason. Tell me what you think. Where I'm wrong. Candidates I'm missing. Anything. Now that Peavy isn't coming, and a leadoff hitter doesn't seem to be either, I think this is the splash the Cubs need to make. Thoughts?