It was rumored that the Chicago Cubs were in serious pursuit of starting pitcher John Lackey and that rumor came true on Friday as the Cubs signed Lackey to a 2-year/$32 million deal. Lackey is 37 years old, so it was obvious that he was going to get a sh0rt-term deal in free agency. The Cubs were looking to add a 3rd starter to their rotation behind Jon Lester and Jake Arrieta and Lackey was the perfect fit. Lackey was teammates in Boston with Lester in Boston from 2010-2013, so Lester was probably a big reason that Lackey chose to sign with the Cubs. I really like this deal for Chicago because it is obvious that Lackey can still pitch effectively as he went 13-10 with the best ERA of his career at 2.77 with St. Louis last season. Lackey isn’t the most flashy starting pitcher out there, but he has certainly been very consistent throughout his 12 MLB seasons as he has a 3.92 career ERA. Lackey will bring a solid veteran presence to a young Cubs team and his 2 world series titles that he has won in his career shows that he can help make a team a world series contender. That is exactly what Chicago is with Lackey now and he might just turn them from a NLCS participant into a world series winner.
Grade: A – Lackey is just a short-term solution for the Cubs at age 37 years old, but he certainly makes the Cubs rotation even better. Even though the Cubs are giving him $16 million per year he isn’t much of a risky signing since he has been a consistent pitcher throughout his MLB career. If he can play like he did for the Cardinals last season then this would be a tremendous signing for the Cubs.