Jed Hoyer on Cubs' offseason: 'The goal is to construct a team that has a chance to make the playoffs'


(670 The Score) President of baseball operations Jed Hoyer knows his Cubs’ championship chances are mighty small in 2022 as it sits early this offseason, but his current goal is focused on a step or two before that lofty ambition.

After an ugly 71-91 season in 2021 that saw the Cubs trade their veteran core ahead of the deadline as they prioritized their long-term future, Hoyer hopes to thread the needle this winter to put the club in position to compete at a higher level next season -- and see what happens from there.

“We just saw sort of the value of getting in the tournament,” Hoyer said on the Bernstein & Rahimi Show on Wednesday. “I think Atlanta was widely thought to be the lowest odds, probably the worst odds of any team in the National League that made the playoffs and they just won the World Series. So I think the goal has to be to get in the tournament. I think that’s the goal every single year. I think we have to try to build a team that can be competitive and can do that. Now, the honest question is are we at a place like the Dodgers might be right now where I think they’re fine-tuning a World Series roster? You know, we’re probably not there right now. I think that’s the goal, to be there in time and get back to that place we were in ’15, ’16, ’17. But as far as how we construct this team and as we look at free agency, certainly the goal is to construct a team that has a chance to make the playoffs. And that’s what we’re going to do.”

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It’s no secret what it’s going to take for the Cubs to compete in 2022 – better pitching. Chicago’s 4.87 ERA in 2021 ranked 13th of the 15 teams in the National League, and Hoyer has mentioned on a number of occasions the team needs to add more velocity to its soft-tossing staff.

“We still need a bunch more innings,” Hoyer said. “That’s something we’ll be really focused on as we go through the rest of this offseason.

“I’ve said this quite a bit – we have resources to spend this winter. We certainly will spend this winter. But we want to do it in the most intelligent fashion possible. Free agency presents itself with a lot of opportunity to bring in talent. It also presents tremendous risk when you’re talking about really long deals, when you’re talking about players on the wrong side of the aging curve. That’s why free agency does present risk. Our goal is certainly to be competitive next year to try to do everything we can to get into the tournament, but we do want to spend intelligently.”