Throughout the day on Thursday, there were reports that the Chicago Cubs were closing in on a contract with free agent starting pitcher Edwin Jackson. Given the new definitions that were given to the word “close” in regards to recent Cubs’ rumors, there is always reason for skepticism when it comes to potential Cubs’ moves. There is no need for skepticism as the Cubs and Jackson have indeed agreed to a four year, $52 million contract on Thursday.
The $52 million that the Cubs are committing to Jackson has left some Cubs’ fans up in arms. While certainly that may be more than Jackson’s actual value, the fact remains that is what the market is for free agent starting pitchers this winter. Also, when you look at the lack of the starting pitchers the Cubs have in their entire organization; the move gives the team some stability. Jackson will not be traded. If the Cubs were interested in Jackson only to trade him, then the team would not have signed the veteran starting pitcher to a lucrative multi-year contract. The addition of Jackson will make for a much easier transition for the Cubs’ starting rotation if and when the team trades starting pitcher Matt Garza. Jackson figures to be an effective starting pitcher for the Cubs through the 2016 season.
On Wednesday, I examined why the Cubs would be interested in signing Jackson.