Cubs NEW YORK, NEW YORK – AUGUST 10: Joey Votto #19 of the Cincinnati Reds. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
After signing Dansby Swanson and Trey Mancini to free agent contracts this offseason, how do the Chicago Cubs stack up against the rest of the NL Central?
The NL Central sent just one team to the postseason in 2022. But after seeing some of the offseason moves unfold, the chances are good that the division may actually put two teams in the playoffs next year.
One of the more active clubs this offseason has been the Chicago Cubs. After missing out on some highly-touted shortstops, the Cubbies were able to land former Atlanta Braves infielder Dansby Swanson.
Chicago then took the opportunity to ink former Baltimore Orioles’ star Trey Mancini to a two-year contract. The slugger is coming off a season in which he mashed 18 home runs and posted an OPS+ of 113.
The Cubs won just 74 games in 2022, but after adding both Swanson and Mancini, it would seem that the North Siders have their sights set on competing for a division crown in 2023. How does the rest of the NL Central look after the Chicago Cubs’ most recent additions?
5. NL Central Power Rankings: Cincinnati Reds
Oh my. The Cincinnati Reds, after “aligning their payroll to their resources”, ended their 2022 season with 100 losses. Ouch! Unfortunately, things don’t look much better for former NL MVP Joey Votto and his Cincinnati teammates.
Reds manager David Bell is being asked to do the impossible if Cincinnati’s front office and ownership expect little more than 60 wins in 2023. The Reds do have electric prospect Elly De La Cruz rocketing up through the farm system, but other than adding Wil Meyers and Curt Casali, Cincinnati has done little to improve their roster heading into next season.