The Cubs continue to focus on pitching, signing right handed pitcher Edwin Jackson Wednesday to a four year contract worth $52 million. The 29-year-old will continue his celebrations when he marries Erika Zanders tomorrow. According to reports, General Manager Jed Hoyer and Manager Dale Sveum went to talk to the free agent in California at the same time the team was trying to lure Anabal Sanchez. Sanchez ended up staying with the Detroit Tigers.
Over the last 10 years, Jackson has played with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Tampa Bay, Rays, Detroit Tigers, Arizona Diamondbacks, the Chicago White Sox, St. Louis Cardinals and most recently the Washington Nationals. He has made at least 31 starts in the last six seasons, recording double digits in wins in each of the last five seasons, according to a Cubs press release.
According to Carrie Muskat, Cubs beat reporter, Hoyer and Sveum went to talk to Jackson while Executive Chairman Tom Ricketts and President of Baseball Operations Theo Epstein went to talk to Sanchez. Both pitchers fit the vision the Cubs have for the future and both were seen as pitchers who the team could build around. As we now know, someone leaked information about the meeting with Sanchez, however, the meeting with Jackson was kept secret.
Having played for the White Sox in 2010-2011, Jackson already is familiar with Chicago, and he already has a friend on the Cubs in Matt Garza. The two played tighter for Tampa Bay in 2008.
According to Muskat, the signing of Jackson, who will wear number 36, completes the 40 man roster, but it also costs the Cubs a draft pick because he did not become available until after the Nationals declined to make him a qualifying offer to stay there.
Also according to Muskat, the Cubs’ starting rotation now includes Jackson, Garza, Scott Baker, Scott Feldman, Jeff Samardzija, Travis wood and Arodys Vizcaino. Vizcaino is recuperating from Tommy John surgery, so may be a question mark as a starter, at least at the beginning of the season.