The Chicago Cubs have seemingly been making at least one big move each offseason the past few years. They continued that trend on Wednesday by acquiring closer Wade Davis from the Kansas City Royals in exchange for outfielder Jorge Soler.
The Cubs had a really good closer with Aroldis Chapman last season and that’s maybe the one reason that they won the world series. However, with Chapman now gone then the Cubs badly needed a new closer. That is why the team decided to trade for Wade Davis from the Royals. Davis has been one of the best closers in the game the past few seasons as proven by his remarkable ERA since 2014. He clearly has the production to be considered the top closer in the MLB as he had a 1.00 ERA in 2014, a 0.94 ERA in 2015, and a 1.87 ERA in 2016. Davis doesn’t have the power arm that Chapman does obviously, yet Davis just is a veteran closer that finds a way to get the job done. He also was a key part of the Royals 2015 world series championship and the Cubs are going to be a playoff time as well in 2017. Chicago is hoping that he’ll show up and play really well in the postseason just like he did with Kansas City in 2015. The Cubs traded away Jorge Soler who is a really talented 24-year old outfielder. However, the Cubs have such a stacked roster especially in the outfield that they wouldn’t have been able to provide him quality playing time anyway. It makes sense to get rid of Soler and give him an opportunity for more playing time with the Royals, although he is still really talented and he could turn out to be a very good MLB player. Overall, the Cubs have probably the most complete roster in the MLB and don’t be surprised if they are playing for a world series title once again in 2017. They will need Davis to be the player that he was with the Royals and if he can be that type of player then this team will be hard to beat.
This move was probably a really tough decision for the Royals considering how great Wade Davis has been for their team for the past few years. However, Kansas City is looking for younger and cheaper players which is why they wanted Soler. He is under contract for the next 4 years for Kansas City at an extremely cheap price. Soler will only be making $3 million next season for the Royals which is a bargain considering how talented he is. The Royals badly needed a starting right fielder and Soler will certainly fill that need. Soler has shown tremendous power in limited playing time so far in his career. He hit 12 home runs in just 227 at-bats with the Cubs last season, but he does have a tendency to strike out a lot. He won’t bring much speed to the Royals as he only has 4 career stolen bases, although he does bring a solid arm and defensive skills to right field for the Royals. Soler is ready to contribute to Kansas City immediately, yet he still has a lot of room for improvement. We’ll see if Soler can turn into a really good player by putting his talent together, but he certainly makes the Royals outfield appear excellent for 2017. Losing Davis means the Royals bullpen will obviously be weaker than last season. However, the team still has Kelvin Herrera and Joakim Soria as solid late inning options in the Royals bullpen. This trade accomplishes Kansas City’s goal of getting some more young and cheap talent so that they can compete for many years. It was a tough trade to make, but it was a good trade since they are getting some young talent while also staying competitive.