Cubs Interested In Dansby Swanson

The Cubs are among the teams with interest in shortstop Dansby Swanson, according to Jon Morosi of MLB Network (Twitter link).  Chicago has been known to have interest in the free agent shortstop market, though Carlos Correa and Xander Bogaerts were the shortstops more linked to the Cubs.

Still, with so many other teams keen on landing a top-tier shortstop, it isn’t surprising that the Cubs have at least considered every member of the “big four” — Swanson, Bogaerts, Correa, and Trea Turner.  Bogaerts and Correa have stood out from the pack since the Cubs have reportedly had interest in Correa for years, while Bogaerts’ ties to Cubs president of baseball operations Jed Hoyer string back to Hoyer’s days in the Red Sox organization.

That said, Swanson naturally has plenty of appeal to any team looking for an upgrade at shortstop.  The former first overall pick is coming off the best of his seven MLB seasons, as Swanson had a career-high 6.4 fWAR over 696 plate appearances and the full 162 games with the Braves.  Swanson’s contributions came on both offense (.277/.329/.447 with 25 homers and 18 steals) and defense, with his first career Gold Glove and a range of above-average marks from public defensive metrics.

Swanson turns 29 in February, so he is still young enough to be a long-term piece for a Cubs team that might have a few too many roster holes to be a full-fledged contender in 2023, though it depends on how aggressive Chicago plans to be this winter.  Like Bogaerts and Turner, Swanson comes at the extra price of draft pick compensation, since all of these three shortstops rejected a qualifying offer (Correa was ineligible for a QO after receiving one last winter).  Swanson is the second-youngest of the big four shortstops, though he is generally seen as the member of the group who has the smallest price tag, comparatively speaking.  MLBTR projected him for a seven-year, $154MM deal, which still ranks fifth on our top 50 free agents list — Swanson was ranked behind only Aaron Judge and the other three shortstops.

It stands to reason that pretty much every team (i.e. the Phillies, Giants, Orioles, Padres, Red Sox) looking into any of the top shortstops might have some interest in other members of the group, a la the Cubs.  That said, the Braves have been the only team known to have a direct interest in Swanson himself, and if Swanson did sign elsewhere, Atlanta isn’t likely to look to Correa, Turner, or Bogaerts as a replacement.

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