11/4 Extra bases – UPDATED

* To no one’s surprise, the Cubs did not make qualifying offers to their four free agents Monday. Now, the team has to decide whether to try to re-sign Scott Baker, Kevin Gregg, Matt Guerrier and Dioner Navarro.

Baker, 32, spent all of the 2013 season rehabbing from Tommy John surgery, but when he signed a one-year, $5.5 million deal with the Cubs last November, the team held a news conference at Wrigley Field and made it clear the right-hander was the type of pitcher they’d like to have in the rotation.

Guerrier, 35, was acquired from the Dodgers in the Carlos Marmol deal, and the right-hander’s season ended Aug. 8 after 15 games with Chicago because of right elbow soreness. He could sign a Minor League deal, and compete for a spot in the bullpen.

Gregg, 35, saved the Cubs, who were scrambling to find a closer when Marmol struggled and Kyuji Fujikawa was injured. Gregg posted his third season of at least 30 saves, yet the year ended on an ugly note after some miscommunication about the right-hander’s role and the Cubs’ desire to look at Pedro Strop in the closer role.

Navarro, 29, was probably the only backup catcher to hit fourth in the Major Leagues. He batted .300 with a career-high 13 home runs, and filled the No. 4 spot in the batting order after Alfonso Soriano was traded. Navarro accepted his role but may try to lobby for more playing time. The Cubs are commited to Welington Castillo as their regular catcher.

* Junior Lake hit a game-winning RBI single in the 10th Sunday night to lift Estrellas to victory in Winter League play in the Dominican Republic.

* If you missed Jorge Soler, Albert Almora and Kris Bryant on Saturday in the Arizona Fall League Fall Stars Game, you can watch them on Tuesday night when the Mesa Solar Sox’s game will be broadcast on MLB Network at 7 p.m. MT/Arizona time. On Monday, the Solar Sox play host to Salt River at HoHoKam Stadium.

* Several Minor League players will be the first to work out at the Cubs’ new Spring Training facility in Mesa this week. The players were invited to take part in the sessions, conducted by strength and conditioning coach Doug Jarrow.

* Congrats to David DeJesus, who signed a two-year contract with the Rays with an option for a third year on Monday.

– Carrie Muskat

1 Comment

Carrie, who do you think would be next in line for the back up catcher spot should the Cubs go with an internal option? From the looks of the AAA and AA rosters catching appears to be a weak link in the system. I am hoping the Cubs are still looking into bringing Navarro back. Maybe if Samardzija is traded he will bring back a top notch catching prospect as a safety net for Castillo?

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