The Chicago Cubs are rebuilding. People don’t want to say it but they are clearly rebuilding. They might make some big trades that suggest it going forward but for now, they are trying to field a team for the 2022 season. The idea of rebuilding and fielding a team can also go hand in hand. That is proven by the signing of Clint Frazier via free agency.
The Chicago Cubs no longer have Javier Baez, Anthony Rizzo, or Kris Bryant. They are led now by Willson Contreras (who only has one year left on his deal so you never know), Ian Happ, Jason Heyward, Frank Schwindel, and Patrick Wisdom. It isn’t a group that is exactly going to bring you to the promised land.
Adding Clint Frazier is one of those “low-risk/high-reward” type deals. If he doesn’t work out, they only promised him one year so he could just be gone after that. If he does work out, then the Cubs might have something good on the cheap and they can figure out how to work him in. He is just 27 years old so there is plenty left in the tank if the Cubs can unlock it.
The Yankees acquired Frazier from Cleveland in 2016 in exchange for Andrew Miller. You may remember that Miller and Cleveland went all the way to the World Series and lost to the Chicago Cubs in seven games. The Cubs acquired Aroldis Chapman from the New York Yankees just six days prior to the Miller trade.
The Chicago Cubs may or may not get something good out of Clint Frazier.
Frazier has had a tough five years in the Yankees organization. He was never given the best chance as he has only played in 228 games over those five years. Of course, part of it is the fact that Frazier didn’t earn it. If there is any team in the league where you need to earn your playing time, it is the New York Yankees. A change of scenery might be great for him.
2021 was a disaster. He had a -1.4 WAR which is absolutely dreadful. The Yankees are literally getting better by not having him on the team. He slashed .186/.317/.317 for an OPS of .633 with five home runs, 15 RBIs, and 20 runs scored.
The Cubs shouldn’t be relying on him to come in and help them win games right away. However, they can bring him in to see if they can unlock that first-round talent that he once displayed before his time with the New York Yankees. This could either be a diamond in the rough or just a low-risk move that doesn’t work out.