The Cubs "have a renewed interest" in reuniting with free-agent right-hander Jake Arrieta, according to Bruce Levine of CBS Chicago.
Levine reports that the clubs showing the most interest in the 31-year-old are the Cubs and the division-rival Cardinals.
Teams like the Brewers, Twins, Blue Jays, Rockies, Rangers, Phillies and Nationals have been tied to Arrieta at some point this offseason, but Chicago and St. Louis appear to be the frontrunners to land the former National League Cy Young Award winner.
Arrieta went 14-10 with a 3.53 ERA in 30 starts for the Cubs last season and is 88-56 with a 3.57 ERA in 197 appearances (191 starts) across his eight-year career. The veteran hurler was one of the best pitchers in the NL during his Cubs tenure, going 68-31 with a 2.73 ERA in 128 starts over parts of five seasons with the club.
Arrieta, a client of Scott Boras, is reportedly seeking a contract of more than $200 million.
Levine also notes the Cubs have "stayed in touch" with right-handers Yu Darvish and Alex Cobb, though the former is receiving a ton of interest from a number of other clubs and the latter may now be out of the team's price range.
Per Levine, Cobb's asking price was around $14 million or $15 million annually in mid-December, but that number has increased by around $3 million.