Chicago Cubs: Four possible trades within the National League Central

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Chicago Cubs
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Chicago Cubs: This guy could also help in center field

The Pirates won 69 games last year and will be lucky to win that number in 2020. That being said, they have some very interesting pieces at the top of their payroll sheet who won’t be around by the time Pittsburgh experiences any kind of revitalization on the field. Chris Archer and Starling Marte, both 31 and signed for two more years, represent assets other teams might desire and a way to shed even more payroll from a team that is going absolutely nowhere.

Archer, the one time Cub farmhand who has teased more potential than actual realization of said potential during his career, could finally find some of that potential on in Chicago. Of course, that being said, he wasn’t very good in 2019, as his nine losses and 5.19 ERA attest. In addition, he also dealt with a shoulder injury in August. Archer is anything but a sure thing, but at two years and $20 million, isn’t he worth as much of a shot as Tyler Chatwood?

Marte is an unnecessary commodity for the Pirates as well given the fact that he’s making $24 million over the next two seasons and they’ll stink. However, he could be very valuable for Chicago, slotted in the same place Cain would be- at leadoff and in centerfield. With similar numbers as Cain with a bit more pop (and a working knowledge of the National League Central and its field/pitchers already) this makes the same kind of sense. A career .341 OBP guy, Marte also put up an impressive .503 slugging percentage in 2019 that would certainly play in Wrigley Field.

Granted the addition of these two former All-Stars would be a bit more costly than the Cubs would go for at the moment, but perhaps with some clarity on the Kris Bryant front, deals can start to be made to free up capital for 2020 acquisitions. If the Cubs are serious about contending for Ross in his first year, this deal wouldn’t take more than a couple young prospects as the salary savings alone would be a welcome thing along the Allegheny.