Cubs, Yankees could get together on a Willson Contreras trade

(Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)
(Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images) /

The Yankees are looking at catchers. Will the Cubs dangle Willson Contreras?

Most of the focus has been centered around the Cubs players entering their final year of team control: Kris Bryant, Javier Baez, Anthony Rizzo and Kyle Schwarber. Meanwhile, two-time All-Star catcher Willson Contreras has seemingly fallen to the back burner in people’s minds as they ponder how Theo Epstein will reshape the roster this offseason.

Contreras, 28, slashed .243/.356/.407 this season, good for a 109 wRC+. His defensive metrics were notably improved – to the point the Venezuelan backstop netted the first Gold Glove nomination of his career. His pitch framing was on a whole different level – and it definitely didn’t go unnoticed.

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So why are we talking about the Chicago catcher? He hasn’t specifically come up in any rumors here so far. But we have heard about the New York Yankees reportedly listening on their own catcher, Gary Sanchez, and having interest in longtime St. Louis icon Yadier Molina. What’s that tell us? The Yankees are looking to make a change behind the dish. Contreras could be the answer.

Molina has been connected to not only the Yankees, but also the Mets and Redbirds. Both New York clubs are looking to upgrade at catcher and Molina is one of the best to ever do it. But with free agent J.T. Realmuto lurking in the waters, it’s plausible a team like the Mets go that direction under new owner Steve Cohen.

But say the competition to make a change behind the plate increases. Where else could a team like the Yankees turn to replace the sputtering Gary Sanchez? The Chicago Cubs and Willson Contreras.

Given his improvements defensively, Contreras has made himself infinitely more valuable not only as a member of the Cubs roster, but as a potential trade chip. He’d almost instantly make the Yankees better on both sides of the ball – and slot in perfectly in an already-loaded lineup.

Freeman, Abreu led at the plate while the Cubs squandered. dark. Next

We know Chicago needs to start looking toward the future. The window for this core is open only to the point that that it allows a slight breeze to waft through the room and make you think there’s still a chance for one more ring. But in all reality, it’s time for change – and a trade of Willson Contreras in exchange for young, controllable talent could be a big first step.