(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Judging from this year the Cubs were a good but not great team. For them to compete with teams like St. Louis, Philadelphia, and the Dodgers, they need to upgrade their roster.
I am the first to complain about the large contracts the Cubs have.
Unless they can trade away Soriano's or Zambrano's contract this offseason or the Rickett family increases the payroll substantially, they are probably going to be conservative (for a big market team) again this offseason.
Here are some moves that I think would help the team in 2010.
1. Sign Chone Figgins or trade Milton Bradley and one of the starters for Carl Crawford. Both of these guys would add speed and better offensive production.
2. Sign Jose Valverde. The guy knows how to close out games. This way Carlos Marmol can stay where he is best, the eighth inning.
3. Trade/Release Milton Bradley at any cost. Even if the team can't get Crawford or Figgins, Adam Dunn is an upgrade from Bradley.
4. Re-sign Mark DeRosa or trade for the Royals Mark Teahen. If there's one thing this season showed me it's that the Cubs with all of their aging veterans need depth and versatility. Both of these guys add that.
5. Trade for an ace. This might not be realistic but if the Cubs can package Zambrano or even Randy Wells (I know there will be hate mail), and get a Roy Halladay, I say do it.
Otherwise if they can pry away someone young like Chad Billingsley from the Dodgers with a package of talent, that might work too. He's only 25 and has shown that he's got the stuff to lead a rotation.