Brandon Webb “remains the Cubs’ No. 1 target”

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After signing first baseman Carlos Pena to a one-year, $10 million deal the Cubs have turned their attention to the rotation.

Craig reported earlier that Matt Garza could be a possibility, but Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune writes that Brandon Webb “remains their No. 1 target.”

Webb hasn’t pitched since Opening Day of 2009 because of a shoulder injury that eventually required surgery and Sullivan notes that “the Cubs still have to check out his medical records” before making an offer to the former Cy Young winner.

Earlier this week the Nationals were also said to be heavily pursuing Webb and according to Sullivan the Cubs are merely “one of the top two or three teams” in the mix for the 31-year-old right-hander.

Michael Kopech has opted out of the 2020 season

Kopech has opted out
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Michael Kopech has opted out of the 2020 season. The White Sox starter informed the team of his decision today, and the team issued a press release to that affect a few minutes ago.

The statement from general manager Rick Hahn. said “we recognize that reaching this decision is incredibly difficult for any competitive athlete, and our organization is understanding and supportive. We will work with Michael to assure his development continues throughout 2020, and we look forward to welcoming him back into our clubhouse for the 2021 season.”

Kopech, 24, has only four big league starts under his belt, all coming in late August and early September of 2018, but after a strong spring training he was likely to make Chicago’s rotation at some point in the 2020 season after sitting out all of 2019 following Tommy John surgery. Kopech was among the players sent to Chicago from the Red Sox in the Chris Sale trade back in December 2016. Others involved in the deal included Yoán Moncada, Victor Diaz, and Luis Alexander Basabe.

Now, however, Kopech has opted out.