Last week, the Cubs sent Cy Young runner-up Yu Darvish in addition to Victor Caratini– a quality backup who acted as Darvish’s personal catcher– to the Padres for one year of Zach Davies and 4 potential customers who are far away from reaching the majors. The next day, Cubs president of baseball operations Jed Hoyer made comments that indicated this was not the start of an extreme rebuild. I attempted to figure out their path forward here.
We can’t make certain at all what the remainder of the offseason holds for the Cubs, notably their core veteran gamers who aren’t under agreement too much longer. We can be sure they’ll at least listen to offers on basically any player. Hoyer said as much when inquired about All-Star catcher Willson Contreras.
Mentioning, Contreras is just 2 years from free company and has a great trade value. All-Stars Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo, Javier Baez and Craig Kimbrel are set to hit totally free firm after this season. Similar to Darvish, previous PERIOD champ Kyle Hendricks has 3 years of control left, but it’s an extremely budget friendly offer given his track record.
If the Cubs decide to keep wheeling and dealing this offseason, where might those names end up calling home? Let’s play matchmaker while also keeping in mind that this is absolutely speculative and for fun There’s also the really genuine possibility none gets traded before Opening Day2021 Please keep all this in mind.
Willson Contreras: Philadelphia Phillies
Hoyer said in his press conference that the Cubs seem like catcher is a strength on the group and that’s since of Contreras’ existence. He’s. There’s also no one left on the group with as much trade worth. The 28- year-old backstop has the ability to be among the best offensive catchers in baseball and has a rocket for an arm. Contreras also discovered how to frame at an above-average clip last season. He’s under team control for 2 more years and it’s possible his acquiring group could persuade him to sign an extension. If the Philliles lose out on retaining J.T. Realmuto, they are an exceptional landing spot. Regardless, anyone seeking capturing help ought to be interested.
Kris Bryant: Atlanta Braves
The most popular Bryant destinations in the trade report mill have been the Phillies (the Bryce Harper connection that people won’t let go) and the Nationals (general manager Mike Rizzo continues to shoot those down). Let’s go somewhere else in the NL East, though. We know the Braves do not mind using a star-caliber player for just one year. They did so with Josh Donaldson in 2019 and Marcell Ozuna last year. It’s possible they are prepared to choose Austin Riley at third and Cristian Pache every day in center, however that leaves an enigma in left field and we understand Bryant can play appropriate defense in the outfield along with 3rd. He’s a very good fit here. Plus, it appears like the Mets are strongly coming while none of the other groups in the East are in reconstruct mode. The Braves have the pieces to go get Bryant.
Anthony Rizzo: Toronto Blue Jays
Very first things first: I really do not believe Rizzo is going to be traded. We’re simply including him for the functions of this workout and by no means is it an impossibility.
The Blue Jays are coming off a season in which they actually broke through as a fun, up-and-coming team to view.
It’s time to take the next step forward and who much better to step in as a leader of the young position players who has been through all the postseason fights than Mr. Rizzo.
Baez only has one year left on his deal, plays a spectacular shortstop and might thrive somewhere in the 5-7 range in the Twins’ homer-heavy offense.
The Angels hit well last year and there’s reason to think that at least holds with the chance they get much better.
Craig Kimbrel: Chicago White Sox
It’s possible Kimbrel isn’t truly trade-able today and that particularly stays the case with reducers like Liam Hendriks, Brad Hand, Alex Colome and more available. There’s one year and $16 million left on Kimbrel’s offer in addition to a club option for 2022 that brings a $1 million buyout, which suggests it’s actually $17 million left in commitment from the club level.
His numbers with the Cubs are beyond unsightly, but 2020 supplied reasons to believe things have turned. If you just lop off his first four trips, Kimbrel’s last 14 looks were worth a 1.42 PERIOD and 0.87 WHIP with 26 strikeouts in 12 2/3 innings. He held players to a.098 average without enabling an extra-base hit. In September alone, he was absurd. He worked 7 1/3 innings, enabling absolutely no runs on simply three hits (all songs) while starting out13 He didn’t walk anybody.
If Kimbrel is dealt, and assuming the White Sox lose out on some of the bigger relief names discussed above, there’s a fit here on the South Side. You can bet brand-new manager Tony La Russa wants a bona fide, ninth-inning “closer” and Kimbrel looked so great down the stretch.