Cubs

Report: Cubs "will be among the teams interested" if Arizona Diamondbacks make OF David Peralta available

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USA Today

Report: Cubs "will be among the teams interested" if Arizona Diamondbacks make OF David Peralta available

The MLB trade deadline is quickly approaching, and it's looking more and more like the Cubs will be active up until then. 

On Saturday, Fox Sports reporter Ken Rosenthal talked about what teams can be expected to buy and sell leading up to the July 31 deadline. One of the teams he mentioned? The Cubs:

"The timing is significant. The Cubs will be among the teams that are interested if the DBacks sell and make Peralta available. Peralta is the type of professional hitter that the Cubs need. He would increase their outfield depth, bolster their lineup against right-handed pitching, and he has one year of control remaining after this one."

Peralta would be an intriguing fit in the Cubs' outfield. Despite being placed on the IL twice this season with shoulder issues, he's still managed to hit .289/.352/.476  with a .828 OPS and a 112 wRC+ in 73 games. That's marginally better production than what the Cubs are currently getting from their outfield, who are slashing .256/.343/.447 with a .789 OPS and a 105 wRC+ (15th in MLB) as a unit. Peralta's wRC+ would rank 3rd among Cubs' outfielders, only behind Kris Bryant and Jason Heyward, both of who are enjoying career years at the plate. 

Peralta's numbers against right-handed pitching alone look even better, as he's currently hitting .319/.379/.546 off righties; since breaking into the majors six years ago, he has a 132 wRC+ against them.  

For what it's worth, the Cubs haven't been terrible against right handers this year. As a team, they ended the first half slashing .258/.339/.458 with a .797 OPS and a 105 wRC+ (8th in MLB) off righties. In fact, among OF's who've had at least 200 AB's against right-handed hitters this season, Jason Heyward has the 9th-best wRC+ (131). Peralta has the 11th-best (129). 

His contact peripherals are also impressive. As it stands today, Peralta has an average exit velocity in the 70th percentile (90 mph) and a Hard Hit % in the 59th percentile (40.4). Statcast is, however, less bullish on Peralta's defense, as the outfielder comes in with below-average percentiles for Outs Above Average (40th) and Outfield Jump (29th). With that said, FanGraphs credits Peralta with 1.9 Defensive Runs Above Average, the first time in his career he's been rated as a plus defender on their site. 

He's currently on a one-year, $7 million deal, and is elligble for his 3rd year of arbitration when the season ends. 

Cubs Talk Podcast: Cubs remain quiet on the trade market

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USA TODAY

Cubs Talk Podcast: Cubs remain quiet on the trade market

The Cubs Talk podcast comes your way from Day 3 of the Winter Meetings in San Diego.

Former Cubs general manager Jim Hendry joins David Kaplan. They reminisce about the day Hendry signed Ted Lilly before undergoing a heart procedure (1:00) and he discusses his new role working in the Yankees front office (3:00).

Plus, Kap asks him how much pride does he have seeing two of his draft picks — Javy Baez and Willson Contreras — become all-stars (10:00) and Hendry discusses the biggest trade that almost happened and how it would have affected the 2008 season (11:40).

Tony Andracki joins Kap with the latest Cubs news... or lack thereof (20:00).

Listen to the full episode in the embedded player below:

Cubs Talk Podcast

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Expanded netting is coming to all 30 MLB ballparks, including Wrigley Field

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USA TODAY

Expanded netting is coming to all 30 MLB ballparks, including Wrigley Field

Protective netting at baseball stadiums has been a hot-button topic ever since a foul ball hit by Albert Almora struck a young fan at a Cubs-Astros game in late May.

Wednesday at the Winter Meetings, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred announced that all 30 teams will have extended netting in place in 2020. Eight teams, including the White Sox, already installed expanded netting in 2019. Everyone else will now have to follow suit.

The White Sox had the netting go all the way to the foul poles, but that isn’t a requirement. Seven of the 22 remaining teams will go to the foul poles.

This means Wrigley Field is getting extending netting in 2020. It isn’t clear how the extended netting will be implemented at Wrigley Field, but it is coming to the stadium on the North Side.

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