Chicago Cubs: No, not Ben Zobrist but Tony Kemp
One of the first deals made on deadline day was Martin Maldonado for Tony Kemp. On the surface, this doesn’t look like much. A light-hitting, defensive catcher that only played four games for the Cubs. And a utilityman who didn’t have a spot in the Houston Astros outfield, batting just .227.
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But what might be one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. The Astros acquired Maldonado last season and felt good enough to bring him in again.
He was a ‘flip’ piece for the Cubs front office, and they turned him around and got Kemp who they have control of through 2023. Plus with Ben Zobrist unlikely to be back until September, and his contract is up this year? This is a plus move by the front office.
The last deal was in my mind the best, as they traded for Nicholas Castellanos from the Detroit Tigers. He is, by all means, a rental as he is a free agent at the end of this season.
I don’t see the Cubs signing him, as his defense is quite weak. But wasn’t brought here for his glove, he was brought here for his bat. While having a bit of a down year, he’s still a .272 career hitter and currently leads the league in doubles.
The Cubs traded away two top-30 prospects, which doesn’t mean the same as it used to. Prospects Adam Richan and Alex Lange went to the Tigers, helping bolster the future Tigers pitching staff. They were A+ and Double-A, respectively. So they likely wouldn’t break the Cubs roster anytime soon.