Coming off a season with five starts at the major-league level, Alex Cobb made 29 starts spanning a career-high 179.1 innings. His 3.66 ERA looks nice, but a 4.16 FIP and 4.24 xFIP suggest it should have been half a run higher. Cobb's BABIP was a little low and his left-on-base percentage a little high, but not egregiously so. The key with Cobb is strikeouts. To maintain a mid-3.00s ERA, he needs to miss more bats, as a 17.3 percent strikeout rate won't get it done. It's a small sample, but if he can sustain what he did to close the season, Cobb's whiffs will climb. Specifically, in his last seven outings, he recorded a 2.81 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 38 strikeouts and eight walks in 38.1 innings. In those efforts, he drastically altered his pitch mix, throwing more curves while barely using his changeup. Cobb's low strikeouts should keep his price down. It's worth paying to see if his last seven games were indicative of the future.
The Cubs are interested in signing Cobb, per a source, Bruce Levine of CBS Chicago reports. The Cobb-to-the-Cubs rumor has been out there for a few months, and with the Winter Meetings opening up Monday, Chicago will look to lock up the right-hander before any other suitors pop up.
Cobb did not accept Tampa Bay's qualifying offer, and will officially hit the free-agent market, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports. Cobb will look for a multi-year deal on the open market this winter after declining the $17.4 million offer, which comes on the heels of earning just $12.2 million combined during the last three years with the Rays. The 30-year-old started 29 games this past season, and recorded a 3.66 ERA and 1.22 WHIP, with a 128:44 K:BB over the course of 179.1 innings. Wherever he winds up, Cobb will be a key cog in that organization's rotation.
Cobb will receive a qualifying offer from the Rays, Jon Heyman of FanRagSports.com reports. Cobb finished the year with a 3.66 ERA over 179.1 innings pitched, seemingly deserving of the $17.4 million offer. The Rays will expect the 30-year-old to be a key contributor in their starting rotation if he chooses to accept the offer.
Cobb will have his final start of the season skipped, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports. Cobb was scheduled to take on the Yankees on Thursday, but manager Kevin Cash has decided to shut down the 29-year-old during the final week of the season to ensure that he closes out the year with a clean bill of health. In his first full season back following Tommy John surgery, Cobb posted a solid 3.66 ERA (4.15 FIP) over 179.1 innings, which was the biggest workload of his career. Jacob Faria will now start Thursday's game in his place.
Cobb is likely to skip his last scheduled start of the season this coming Thursday, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports. Cobb has fired a career-high 179.1 innings this season in what is his first full campaign since Tommy John surgery. The 29-year-old right hander has provided mostly encouraging results, posting a 12-10 record, 3.66 ERA and 1.22 WHIP. Cobb played the 2017 campaign on a one-year, $4.2 million contract, so it remains to be seen if he's tossed his last game in a Rays uniform.