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BCB After Dark: Nothing free about a free agent

The late-night/early-morning spot for Cubs fans asks which free agent shortstop the Cubs should sign.

Chicago White Sox v Minnesota Twins Photo by David Berding/Getty Images

It’s another evening here at BCB After Dark: the grooviest get-together for night owls, early-risers, new parents and Cubs fans abroad. It’s been a long day of baseball today and none of it involved the Cubs. So come on in and relax. Listen to music and talk baseball. There’s no cover charge. We still have a few good tables available. There’s a two-drink minimum, but you need to bring your own beverage. It can be hot or cold. Just like jazz.

BCB After Dark is the place for you to talk baseball, music, movies, or anything else you need to get off your chest, as long as it is within the rules of the site. The late-nighters are encouraged to get the party started, but everyone else is invited to join in as you wake up the next morning and into the afternoon.

I’m cheering for the Mariners this postseason. I’ve got a brother-in-law who is a big Mariners fan and that’s as good a reason as any to pick a team in the playoffs. But I have to admit I’m not really invested emotionally in how far Seattle goes this year. I’m just not going to have the emotional highs or lows that I would if I were cheering for the Cubs.

That’s why I can say that Astros’ walk-off win over the Mariners today was incredible baseball. If you want to make someone a baseball fan, have them watch that game.

Last night I asked you what your favorite memory of the 2022 Cubs was. The winner, with 26 percent of the vote, was the win over Cincinnati in the “Field of Dreams” game. In second place was Christopher Morel’s first MLB home run in his first MLB game. That got 22 percent.

On Tuesday night/Wednesday morning, I don’t do a movie essay, although you can go back and read yesterday’s thoughts on Here Comes Mr. Jordan. Tomorrow I promise to take a look at the re-make, Heaven Can Wait. We’ll see what my word is worth then.

But I always have time for some jazz, so those of you who skip the music can do so now. You won’t hurt my feelings.

I guess we are close enough to Halloween now that we can start playing Halloween music. I know a lot of houses in my neighborhood are decorated already and have been for about two weeks.

So here is something that isn’t a traditional Halloween song. Those of you who want to get in the spirit of the season can and those of you who just want to listen to jazz can just take it as another jazz tune. It’s “Ghost,” written and performed by saxophonist Joshua Redman and featured on his 2009 album Compass. There are no words or anything, but the song certainly has a haunting feel to it.

So with Redman on tenor sax, Larry Grenadier on bass and Brian Blade on drums, here’s “Ghost.”

Welcome back to everyone who skips the music.

I’ve asked this question before and I hate to repeat myself, but it is going to be the biggest question that faces the Cubs through the rest of the calendar year. So I guess we can discuss it again in the light of more information.

It seems the Cubs are going to spend this winter. Of course, team president Jed Hoyer keeps repeating “intelligent spending,” but owner Tom Ricketts said in a letter to the fans today that the Cubs will be “active in free agency” and that Jed will have the “necessary resources available to substantially supplement our roster.” And Tom outranks Jed.

All indications are that the Cubs are going to go after one of the four elite shortstops on the market: Xander Bogaerts, Carlos Correa, Dansby Swanson or Trea Turner. That would allow them to move Nico Hoerner to second base and Nick Madrigal to . . . somewhere else. Maybe the bench. Maybe another team.

I could go over the relative strengths and weaknesses of the four players, but I’d really rather you did that in the comments. I was surprised to find that if you go by Baseball-reference’s version of WAR, that Swanson was tied with Bogaerts for the most value over the past season with 5.7. (Correa was at 5.4 and Turner 4.9, in case you were wondering.)

Now I don’t believe that bWAR is the be-all and end-all of statistics. Those numbers are just a guide. They’re not proof of anything. But that’s why we’re here. Throw out your best argument.

They are all very good players. Most of us would be happy with any of the four. I know I would. But tonight you have to make a choice. Today’s question is: which one of those four shortstops do you most want the Cubs to sign?


Which free agent shortstop do you most want the Cubs to sign?

This poll is closed

  • 14%
    Xander Bogaerts
    (41 votes)
  • 21%
    Carlos Correa
    (60 votes)
  • 14%
    Dansby Swanson
    (40 votes)
  • 50%
    Trea Turner
    (144 votes)
285 votes total Vote Now

Thank you again so much for stopping by. I hope you’ve been able to relax and have a little fun. Please recycle any bottles or cans you may have brought. Get home safely. Tip the waitstaff. And join us again tomorrow night for another edition of BCB After Dark.