Possible free agent targets for the Cubs

Possible free agent targets for the Cubs
November 1, 2013, 8:00 pm
Tony Andracki

It's officially the offseason for Major League Baseball and there's already been a flurry of news since the World Series ended Wednesday night.

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Free agency is heating up, but just how invested will the Cubs be in the market?

With the organization waiting for the Wrigley Field renovation project to get rolling and coming off a 96-loss season, Theo Epstein's front office doesn't figure to make a huge splash this winter.

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In rumors, the Cubs have already been linked to high-profile free agents like Red Sox outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury (a former Epstein draft pick), Reds outfielder Shin-Soo Choo and Japanese pitching import Masahiro Tanaka (who has yet to be posted). But they may be more likely to fill holes with minor pieces, such as improving the bullpen with guys like Jesse Crain or Edward Mujica or taking flyers on players coming off injury like outfielder Grady Sizemore or former White Sox starting pitcher Gavin Floyd.

Hardball Talk compiled a list of the Top 150 free agents and the Cubs have just three players on the list -- Scott Baker (No. 44), Dioner Navarro (67) and Kevin Gregg (104). Ellsbury, Tanaka and Choo are at the top of the list, below only Robinson Cano of the Yankees.

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There's plenty of bullpen help to be had at a decent price, with names like Joba Chamberlain, Eric O'Flaherty, J.P. Howell and Jose Veras on the list. Other than that, the only true hole the Cubs have to fill is backup catcher with no prospects on the horizon and assuming Navarro priced himself out of Chicago with his solid 2013 season.