Chicago Cubs: These moves prevented team from adding Bryce Harper

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Chicago Cubs: José Quintana trade starts a domino effect

Like Heyward, the Cubs may not have had as much playoff success in recent memory without José Quintana. The left-hander provided the Cubs’ starting rotation with the boost it needed following a disappointing first half two years ago.

The Cubs were victims of the dreaded World Series hangover in 2017, holding a 43-45 record at the All-Star Break. Two days after the Midsummer Classic, the Cubs acquired Quintana in a rare crosstown trade with the Chicago White Sox.

Quintana provided the Cubs’ starting rotation with the boost that it needed following a disappointing first half. His 3.74 ERA in 14 starts does not jump off of the page, but it certainly was an upgrade over the rotation’s 4.66 ERA and 1.366 WHIP in 473 innings pre-All-Star Break.

With the left-hander in the fold, the Cubs’ rotation delivered a 3.36 ERA and 1.151 WHIP in 415 1/3 innings post-break. Quintana also went toe-to-toe with Max Scherzer and Clayton Kershaw in two of his postseason starts.

Who knows how the Cubs would have fared in 2017 without Quintana. Baseball teams are bigger than one single player, but Quintana was an integral piece. However, the package surrendered by the Cubs to acquire him looks worse and worse by the day.