The best known (and from what some say, sexiest) baseball exec comes to Chicago… the best player in baseball, their rival's star, goes on the market… and the first Cubs move of the hot-stove season is…
Rebuilding: not always sexy.
But it does portend something exciting:
Anyway, David DeJesus, just recently of the Oakland A's and longtime Royals outfielder. Think of him like a younger, more sabermetrically appealing Marlon Byrd. Less power, walks more, more patient at the plate (DeJesus vs. Byrd), probably better in the field. Byrd was signed for three years at five million per; DeJesus gets two years at five million per with an option. Sports Illustrated's Jon Heyman is a fan:
Fox Sports's Jon Morosi points out that it's the second time Epstein went after DeJesus. The risk? DeJesus missed much of 2010 with a thumb injury and wasn't very good last year, though during the second half of the season he put up numbers closer to his career marks (.270 BA, .342 OBP, .438 SLG). Due credit to The Hardball Times's Jeffrey Gross for calling it:
If the Cubs want to go outside the organization, Grady Sizemore on a one-year incentive-laden deal could make a lot of sense, as could a low-cost one- or two-year deal for David DeJesus as a stopgap until [Brett] Jackson arrives.
So the Epstein era begins not with a bang, but with a well-regarded veteran signed at an agreeable price for a short contract.
Photograph: vebirk (CC by 2.0)