Chicago Cubs: A deal not to be passed up
Say it isn’t so. We, as the collective ownership at Cubbies Crib, did not necessarily wish to trade Contreras. Heck, ‘Willy’ is my current favorite player across baseball, and the notion to even think about letting him go was a difficult one.
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Starting with the significant aspect for Contreras, he is set to cost the Cubs $4.5 million this season. Pennies on the dollar for a guy who had a career year in 2019. Not only that, but Contreras is under team control through the 2022 season. At 27 years old, he is in the prime of his career.
The Cubs made sure to limit Contreras’ innings in 2019 as a way to keep him rested and healthy. He caught 298 fewer innings this past season than in 2018. It worked as he hit a career-high 24 home runs, posting career high’s in both wRC+ and overall offensive WAR as a result.
While Contreras did spend time on the injured list, it was a much-needed bounce-back season for the star and one he can build on moving forward. The White Sox last season ensured a majority of the catching duties went to James McCann. McCann was decent enough slashing .273/.328/.460 with a slightly above-average 109 wRC+; however, he is 29 years old.
So, the question remains: who did the Cubs receive in return? Well, in my mind, they were undoubtedly not rolled over by any means. Coming back to Chicago are three of the White Sox’ top ten prospects and another guy who ranked overall in their top 25. Let’s dive right into it.