Cheap Cubs beg us to make fun of them more with Cody Bellinger-inspired nickname

The Cubs made it too easy for fans to make fun of them.

Sep 15, 2023; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Chicago Cubs center fielder Cody Bellinger (24) gets ready for
Sep 15, 2023; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Chicago Cubs center fielder Cody Bellinger (24) gets ready for / Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Cubs looked like early winners of the offseason as they managed to steal Craig Counsell away from their division rivals in Milwaukee and give him a record-setting contract to be their new manager. Upgrading from David Ross, a decent manager to Counsell, one of the game's best, is a big deal. Unfortunately, the Cubs have done little to get excited about since.

There's nothing wrong with the moves they've made. Hector Neris should be a solid addition to Chicago's bullpen, and they got him at a good price. Shota Imanaga can be a solid mid-rotation arm and is another player they got at good value. The Michael Busch trade gave them a solid prospect with tons of team control and promise.

The problem has more to do with the moves the Cubs didn't make. Despite being linked to just about every big-name free agent and trade candidate imaginable, the best player the Cubs have signed is probably Neris. The most expensive player was Imanaga who got a guaranteed sum of $53 million. Not nothing, but not exactly breaking the bank.

The move that would break the bank would be Chicago re-signing Cody Bellinger, their best position player from last season. Bellinger finished in the top 10 in NL MVP voting, reviving his career in the Windy City. What he's gotten from the Cubs following that season is nothing but crickets. The two sides have not engaged in serious contract talks and who knows if it'll ever happen. Chicago's cheapness is what makes their latest post on Twitter just that much funnier.

New Cubs nickname gives glimpse into their offseason

As Bellinger continues to twiddle his thumbs in free agency, the Cubs are out here coining the nickname "Nickel & Dimes" for their middle infield consisting of Nico Hoerner and Dansby Swanson. Irony at its finest.

As of February 20, the Cubs rank 11th in the majors in estimated luxury tax payroll and have roughly $41 million in CBT room to spend according to Spotrac. Rather than spending more of the money they certainly have, the Cubs have been searching for bargains, as evidenced by their two minor league signings of David Peralta and Dom Smith on Monday. Again, those aren't bad moves, but they don't make the team much better.

The Cubs have more than enough wiggle room to get something done with Bellinger before coming close to hitting the first luxury tax threshold, yet they've shown absolutely no urgency in doing so. The Cubs won 83 games last season with Bellinger (and Marcus Stroman) playing a huge role. Even with the nice moves they've made this offseason, their roster, on paper, looks worse than last year's team. That, combined with teams like the Reds and Cardinals improving, spells trouble for Chicago.

Until the Cubs stop nickeling and diming, they're going to be perceived as pretenders rather than the contenders they had hoped to be. This team needs Bellinger. Cubs fans know it, Cubs players know it, and hopefully, the Cubs front office knows it too. Until that move happens, fans will continue to make fun of the Cubs, especially when they come up with nicknames like that.