The Chicago Cubs have reportedly submitted a bid for free-agent first baseman Albert Pujols, according to St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
While the Cubs had previously been rumored to be interested in Pujols, along with fellow slugging free-agent first baseman Prince Fielder, until now it had only been reported that the St. Louis Cardinals and the Miami Marlins had made offers to the 31-year-old. According to the Post-Dispatch, Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein met with Pujols’ agent, Dan Lozano, on Monday, and the paper was able to confirm that the team made a “qualifying bid,” for the longtime St. Louis Cardinals first baseman.
Since Epstein took over baseball operations for the Cubs this fall, the team has made their intentions clear that they wish to rebuild the Cubs in the hopes of bringing an elusive World Series title to Wrigley Field. Last season Carlos Pena served as the club’s first baseman and hit .225/.357/.462 for Chicago with 28 home runs and 80 RBIs. Pena is now himself a free agent, however Pujols and Fielder are viewed as potentially significant upgrades. Pujols hit .299/.366/.541 with 37 home runs and 99 RBI for the Cardinals last season. The three-time Most Valuable Player has a career 162 game average of .328/.420/.617 with 42 home runs and 126 RBI.