These are some of the possibilities.
Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo, Javier Báez and Craig Kimbrel all make up extremely interesting trade targets. Let’s find them some potential landing sites.
MLB.com’s analysts came up with six competing teams that could make a big splash by trading for one or more of Cub’s big names and creating a deal for each of those teams.
Here are the trade proposals. (All of the above statistics began on Friday.)
El Mago makes As̵
7;s shortstop problem go away
Why it could work: A needs a shortstop more than anyone. Their offensive production from the shortstop position is the second worst of any team (only the Pirates have gotten smaller) and by far the worst of any playoff contender. Oaklands wRC + at shortstop is only 61 … 100 is league average. Offseason acquisition Elvis Andrus, who briefly started 82 of A’s 89 games, just hasn’t been the answer.
So it’s time for a new trade. Báez is a boom-or-bust hitter – high home runs, high strikes – but he has been more boom than bust this season (21 homers, 107 wRC +). His power struggle would go a long way for the A’s who have only gotten it two home runs from their shortstops all year, tied to the fewest of any team. Báez is also a defender with a highlight roll; Andrus has been below average.
The Cubs would get a quality prospect in Davidson – the 23-year-old switch-hitter was A’s first-round draft pick in 2019, having power potential, above-average speed, a strong arm and good athletics. Add an exciting view view in Criswell, a hard thrower flashing plus secondary seats with a slider and change, and maybe you have a deal.
Who says no: More likely Cubs. They probably will not get everything they want for Báez. Javy is a fan favorite in Chicago, and at his best he’s a superstar shortstop, but he’s a hire and you can see the risk in going out and shopping for him and his Major League-high 112 strikeouts and hack-at -all-access on the plate. Davidson and Criswell are the top-10 prospects for the A’s, but they are not ranked in MLB’s Top 100 overall, so they may not be able to pry El Mago away from Chicago.
Fighting forces’ pen to playoff push
Why it could work: Giants have arrived ahead of schedule and are in a good position for a playoff berth (84.2% odds by season per FanGraphs), but are trying to keep the talented Dodgers and Padres out to win the NL West and avoid a winner -take- all wild card game. The motivation should be there to act, and while the San Francisco bullpen has not exactly been an issue (3.31 ERA, tied for second place in the MLB), it is also low on firepower (22.9% K-rate, 25th). Kimbrel has been sensational this season and would not only give the Giants a shutdown closer, but also free submarine-like Tyler Rogers and left-leaning Jake McGee to strike more at high-ranking places earlier in the game.
The bonus with Kimbrel is that he is not a pure hire. The 33-year-old has a $ 16 million club opportunity in 2022 so the Giants could have him for two playoffs and after seasons. Still, it may be difficult for Chicago to land the kind of prospects they gave up (Gleyber Torres) to acquire Aroldis Chapman in 2016. With that said, 19-year-old Harrison has an arrow up next to his name as a choice of the third round in 2020 has knocked out 76 in 46 2/3 innings this year in Class A. Castro (3.22 ERA in Triple-A) was able to provide instant bullpen support, and Davis (currently on the injured list) has torn Triple up -A few cups of coffee in MLB.
Who says no? Probably the Cubs. While Chicago no doubt prefers to move the rest of Kimbrel’s contract, it could also pick up his option and then trade with him this winter. With less sense of urgency, the Cubs might be holding out for a more elite prospect or one ready for the big leagues.
‘Welcome to the Mets.’ Really this time?
Why it could work: Back in January, amid swirling rumors that he was on the verge of being treated, Bryant received a text from an area code in Connecticut with the cryptic “Welcome to the Mets” message. It turned out to be baloney, of course, but the Mets and Cubs actually discussed Bryant quite a bit, and there’s no reason why they shouldn’t discuss him now.
Despite major difficulties on the injury front, the Mets have had one of the most reliable pitching staffs in baseball this season. It is the crime that surprisingly holds this club back from being truly World Series caliber. The Mets have an average of only 3.6 runs per game. Match – second worst in the entire MLB, going into Friday before an impressive display against the Pirates. It goes without saying that Bryant is the type of bat that is capable of bringing everything up. It will be interesting to see how quickly third baseman JD Davis can round back to form on his expected return from a hand sprain early in the second half, but Bryant also has the versatility to expand the field and spell Pete Alonso at the start when needed .
And for the Cubs, this returns exceeds the Mets’ no. 8, 9 and 11 views per. MLB pipeline the value of the draft compensation they receive if / when Bryant signs elsewhere.
Who says no? Probably the Mets. Bryant will have about $ 6 million left on his salary by 2021 at the time of the trade deadline. And while the Mets may add that to their numbers while staying below the luxury tax limit, they may want to make several moves that complicate the equation. For the Cubs to swallow any salary would require more in the view area from the Mets. In general, it can be difficult for the trade value and nominal value to match with rental position players.
The Yankees are going after that Cubs land controllable slugger
Why it could work: The Yankees desperately need a left-handed bat, so adding Rizzo to the lineup will help balance a very right-handed group. As a bonus, Rizzo also brings better defense at first base. The New York bullpen has been solid, but GM Brian Cashman knows there is no such thing as having too much pitching, so Chafin would add more depth to the formidable group.
For the Cubs, Voit would be the Rizzo replacement the club should always look for this season, giving them control of the 30-year-old slugger through 2024. Peraza is a tool-free 21-year-old shortstop who can do a little bit of everything. Although the Cubs have two shortstops among their Top 5 prospects (Cristian Hernandez and Ed Howard), Peraza – who plays at Double-A – is closer to being ready for big leagues than any of them.
Who says no? The kids. Voits club control is appealing, but he profiles himself as a future DH who is not yet officially a lock to getting to the National League full time. Given Rizzo’s importance to fans, the Cubs will hope to get more in return for him, while Chafin may be a much in demand arm in a bullfighting market.
Cubs deals with one very well-known enemy
Why it could work: Let’s have some intradivision fun!
There is no love lost on the diamond between the Brewers and the Cubs, but maybe they can see eye to eye on the trading block. Milwaukee is as pitching dependent as any division leader, but the pitching staff – led by the big three of Corbin Burnes, Freddy Peralta and Brandon Woodruff in front and the two-headed monster of Josh Hader and Devin Williams in the back – have proven to be championship caliber. The crew could run on these arms through October (a la 2019 nationals) if its offense just throws in a little more; Brewers owns a National League-worst .220 team running on average as former leaders like Christian Yelich and Keston Hiura search for answers. Bryant obviously represents a huge upgrade over Luis Urías in the hot corner, and given Jackie Bradley Jr.’s offensive fights, the breweries would also benefit from rotating his bat in the outfield.
Meanwhile, the Cubs appear to have a quick “reload” instead of a complete 2012-style demolition. Ashby just got his first taste of the big ones (albeit a bitter one), and his large number of strikes in minors could help address the sharp lack of swing-and-miss in Chicago’s future rotation plans. Quero can be a promising captive prospect if the kids also choose to treat other Venezuelan Willson Contreras.
Who says no? The Cubs, who are likely to have to pay some of Bryant’s remaining 2021 salary to convince a team to trade for him months before hitting free agency. Paying out of pocket to send him to a tough division competitor would probably be too much for Wrigley, who was true to his stomach.
The Blue Jays add a proven closer
Why it could work: The Blue Jays are in third place in AL East behind the Red Sox and Rays and have one of the most dynamic baseball offenses. The Jays’ 112 wRC + ranks second in the Majors just behind the Astros. Hitting has not been a problem, but driving prevention has been, especially in the late innings. The team signed Kirby Yates in the offseason, but he ended up needing Tommy John Surgery before the season even began. The team has had seven different pitchers that have registered at least one save, with Jordan Romano leading the way with six. There is no doubt that a safer option at the end of games would put the team in a better place and allow them to use Romano, who has been good, with a 1.76 ERA, in other high voltage situations.
Plus, Kimbrel has a club opportunity in 2022, when the young team is likely to be competitive again. That means he could finish the win after the season for Vlad Jr. and the company for two years in a row.
Who says no? Probably the Cubs who might want more of an MLB-ready prospect, or even try to ask for one of Toronto’s players who has already reached the level of Alek Manoah. Until we know if the Cubs could make these trades with a view to 2022 or 2024, it’s hard to know if they would take a clearly rebuilding trade package like the one above with two prospects if ETAs are 2023.