With Yu Darvish signing, National League tilts in Cubs' favor

In Hindsight Rangers Should Have Gotten More for Darvish Tom Dorsa Feb 12 2018 Offseason Opinions & Predictions Texas Rangers Transactions

On Saturday, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported that the Cubs and Darvish came to an agreement on a six-year, $126 million contract.

This certainly applies to Darvish, who has struck out 1,021 batters in 832 innings in a six-year span that also saw him sit out 2015 after Tommy John surgery.

Bringing back Yu Darvish would have allowed the Los Angeles Dodgers to keep together one of the most terrifying rotations in baseball for 2018 and beyond, but Darvish has instead signed with another National League contender.

Across the months of the regular season, perhaps having Darvish ups the Cubs' win total by just a handful of games, but he will also help in a couple of ways that Chicago sorely needs: bullpen usage and walk rate.

Still, with their still-getting-better nucleus of position-player stars, and a starting rotation that now includes Gerrit Cole, in addition to Dallas Keuchel, Justin Verlander, and Lance McCullers, the Astros should run away with the AL West again.

Which team will end up with the former Chicago Cubs starter? Adding Darvish to the mix makes an already contending Cubs team even more formidable. He went 2-2 in four postseason games, including two starts in the World Series. In nine starts with Los Angeles, Darvish was 4-3 with a 3.44 ERA. He did fashion a 42-15 pitching record with a 2.69 ERA. "It's a great day for the Cubs organization to welcome a pitcher of this caliber".

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The Cubs have moved on from Arrieta now that they have Darvish, eliminating one of the right-hander's options.

If Arrieta's market continues to sink, maybe something in the range of a three-year, $80M deal could work with the Phillies. With all due respect to Mike Montgomery, previously projected to be in the rotation before the Darvish acquisition, that seems to be a fair number.

Jose Quintana should feel more comfortable as a Cub heading into spring training after last summer's trade from the White Sox. It may turn out to be that the leadoff spot is a shared arrangement that involves Schwarber, Albert Almora Jr. and Ben Zobrist, depending on the matchups. The Twins were pretty quickly taken off the list, but it was rumored that the remaining three teams besides the Cubs, were in it until the end. Sometimes, the best-laid plans find a way to go astray.

The Cardinals, who just a few seasons ago were 100-game winners but have since failed to make the playoffs in consecutive years, will have the return of young phenom Alex Reyes to their staff, but they can no longer count on the once-steady Adam Wainwright to anchor their rotation. Both shut the Cubs down in the National League Championship Series (NLCS) last season.

Lorenzo Cain signed for eight figures when he agreed to a five-year, $80 million contract with the Milwaukee Brewers.

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