If it feels like Bryant’s name has appeared on every trade-candidate list for the past couple years, it’s because it has. The 2016 NL MVP has been rumored to be dealt for a couple years, but nearly half of the executives polled believe this is the summer that the Cubs will finally move Bryant, who is in his contract year.
“The Cubs aren’t scared to make big moves,” one NL executive said. “I think they will look to make sure they get value for him before he hits free agency.”
That Bryant is off to a hot start is only fueling the fire when it comes to a potential trade. Chicago off-loaded salary this winter with the trade of Yu Darvish to the Padres and the decision to non-tender Kyle Schwarber, and even if the Cubs are on the fringe of the postseason race, the likelihood of adding salary before the Deadline seems remote.
Given the Cubs’ slow start and salary restraints, an AL executive believes Chicago could be active beyond Bryant between now and July 30, continuing to remake the roster with an eye toward 2022 and beyond.
Following the Cubs' doubleheader sweep of the Dodgers on Tuesday, Bryant led the Majors in doubles (12) and trailed only Ronald Acuña Jr. among the NL leaders in home runs (9), slugging percentage (.699) and OPS (1.102). Bryant's 1.8 fWAR entering Tuesday was also second to only Acuña in the NL.
The 29-year-old’s injury history -- he missed a total of 101 games between 2018-20 -- was cited by two execs as a reason for the Cubs to take advantage of Bryant’s solid start, moving the versatile slugger sooner rather than later.
“His production has been good so far, and he seems healthy,” a second NL exec said. “The Cubs are going to look to move him ASAP.”
ASAP, they say, for the 5th year in a row
They also entertain the Dodgers trading Seager bc they’re totally still a winning team without the starting SS. Baseball really has lost it’s gd mind