Chicago Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer knows the team has to reshape the pitching staff and the depth at the position throughout the organization, so he's not willing to write off any possible options -- which means even Ryan Dempster could come back at the right price. The veteran pitcher put the Cubs in a very tough position at the trade deadline and killed a potential deal to the Atlanta Braves with his indecision about waiving his no-trade clause, but when Hoyer was asked by Chicago Tribune reporters about whether Dempster could make his way back to the north side of Chicago, he didn't say no:
"A lot of players will end up expressing interest," Hoyer said. "Certainly [Dempster] pitched well here for a long time. Obviously there's a mutual respect."
"That was an interesting week in the history of the Cubs and in the life of Ryan Dempster for sure. But no hard feelings at all. That wouldn't preclude us from bringing him back."
The Cubs need starting pitching at the major league level, but they also need more prospects at the minor league level that fit their vision of building a sustainable roster for the future. That means price will be a major factor with any acquisition, and Hoyer did note the team would be interested in anyone from a minor league free agent to a veteran one-year "rental" with an expiring deal.
It should be a very interesting offseason for the Cubs.