Chicago Cubs: Four free agent options to strengthen the starting rotation

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - SEPTEMBER 13: Alec Mills #30 of the Chicago Cubs celebrates with teammates after throwing a no-hitter to beat the Milwaukee Brewers 12-0 at Miller Park on September 13, 2020 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - SEPTEMBER 13: Alec Mills #30 of the Chicago Cubs celebrates with teammates after throwing a no-hitter to beat the Milwaukee Brewers 12-0 at Miller Park on September 13, 2020 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /
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Anthony DeSclafani
(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /

The Chicago Cubs are familiar with Anthony DeSclafani with his time in Cincinnati.

As previously mentioned, there are a number of low-cost free agents the Chicago Cubs could target, like Mike Minor who finished with a strong second-half to 2020, Drew Smyly who made just five starts last season but struck out nearly 38% of hitters, or even someone like Rick Porcello who hasn’t walked more than 6% of hitters in a season since his rookie campaign in 2009.

But what about Anthony DeSclafani, the 30-year-old right-handed pitcher who has spent the last six seasons in the NL Central with the Cincinnati Reds?

MLBTradeRumors.com predicts a one-year/$4 million deal for DeSclafani in free agency, a great price if he can regain his 2019 form.

In 31 starts back in 2019, DeSclafani finished 9-9 with a 3.89 ERA, a career-low 1.20 WHIP, and a career-high 24% strikeout rate. He’s also consistently produced low walk totals and respectable ground ball numbers across his career, including 7% and 43% marks in 2019, respectively.

If the Cubs think they can get that version of DeSclafani, his familiarity pitching in the NL Central and low price tag are positive bonuses. Injuries severely limited his time on the mound in 2020 and could explain his ugly numbers, but as with most things we’ve seen in 2020, we can probably overlook those numbers for the time being.

Next. Three trade destinations for Kris Bryant. dark

Whichever way the Chicago Cubs go to solidify their starting rotation, there are plenty of noteworthy options.