Chicago Cubs rumors: Xander Bogaerts is team’s “top priority”
SAN DIEGO — While there have been other free agent shortstops linked to the Chicago Cubs throughout the offseason, one MLB insider is saying that Xander Bogaerts is now the “top priority” for the franchise as MLB Winter Meetings kick off here in San Diego.
Chicago Cubs rumors: Xander Bogaerts now the shortstop of interest
According to MLB insider Bob Nightengale, Xander Bogaerts has moved to the top of the free agent shortstop list for the Chicago Cubs, with Nightengale calling Bogaerts the “top priority” for the Cubs as the franchise looks to once again get back to relevancy in the National League.
The 30-year-old Bogaerts has played his entire 10-year MLB career with the Boston Red Sox, but last week it appeared that the shortstop’s relationship with the Red Sox was ending before reports came back that that report was incorrect. Bogaerts has been called a top priority for the Red Sox as well, but there has reportedly been little movement toward a long-term deal to keep Bogaerts in Fenway.
Bogaerts is one of four free agent shortstops who are being courted by a number of MLB teams, joining Carlos Correa, Dansby Swanson, and Trea Turner in that group. Turner and the Cubs were reported to have “mutual interest” in each other before the 2022 season even ended, while Swanson and Correa have both also been linked to the Cubs in rumors this offseason.
The Cubs will have plenty of competition with not only Bogaerts, but all of the other shortstops at the top of this free agent class as well. According to projections from MLBTradeRumors.com, Correa and Turner are expected to draw the highest contracts this offseason, with Swanson and Bogaerts coming in at a lower level (MLBTR predicts a seven-year, $189 million deal for Bogaerts, which would push him into his age-37 season).
Earlier in the offseason, Bogaerts opted out of the remaining three years and $60 million on his contract with the Red Sox, kicking off the hopes of the Cubs and other teams to land him.