11/15 Cubs in meet & greet phase

Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer, the Cubs brain trust, are meeting with agents re: free agents and talking to teams about possible trades during the General Manager Meetings at the Pfister Hotel in Milwaukee this week. Right now, it’s the initial phase of conversations.

“We’re still very much in the information gathering mode on all of that stuff [re: free agents],” Hoyer said Tuesday. “We’re not really in a position to rule out much at this point. We’re going to listen on a lot of things and think about a lot of things. I’d be misleading if I started to dice up the free agent pool too much.”

Hoyer wouldn’t specify how much he has to work with as far as the team payroll is concerned, and would not comment on specific players. But they are meeting with lots of agents to lay the ground work as they try to fill some spots on the Cubs roster.

“Coming in late sometimes, a player looks at it like, ‘Where’s this team been? Maybe I was a second choice, third choice,'” Hoyer said. “I think expressing an interest is important. Coming out of the gate strong with an offer, a lot of times at this time of year, people are wary to accept anything because they want to see how the market develops. I think expressing interest early is very important.”

— Carrie Muskat

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