Chicago Cubs: 3 potential outside-the-box trade partners for Kris Bryant

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Chicago Cubs
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Chicago Cubs: Toronto Blue Jays

The Toronto Blue Jays appear to be close to serious contention, having made the expanded playoffs this past year and loaded with lots of young talent. If they want to make a move that could help them compete with the big boys in the AL East, perhaps they could consider a trade for Bryant. They could use an upgrade at third base, as Travis Shaw, after appearing on the verge of stardom 2-3 years ago in Milwaukee, has come back to earth considerably.

The Blue Jays have a top-five farm system, so there’s a lot of potential talent there for other teams to look at. Because they have so much to offer, perhaps they would be a potential suitor for a bigger third base name like Nolan Arenado. However, if a team such as the Dodgers, who also have a good farm system, were to get Arenado instead, the Blue Jays could look to the Cubs and Bryant as a consolation prize.

The problem with a potential deal with the Blue Jays, from the Cubs’ perspective, is that they have no obvious third base prospect to replace Bryant; only one of their top 30 MLB Pipeline prospects (Kevin Smith at #19) profiles as a third baseman, and that hasn’t been his primary position. That’s not necessarily a deal-breaker, however, as the Cubs could look elsewhere.

Nate Pearson is the Blue Jays’ prize pitching prospect, but they won’t be parting with him for Bryant. Instead, perhaps Simeon Woods Richardson and/or Alek Manoah could be involved if it’s pitching the Cubs are after; both project to be impactful major league starters. Of their top ten prospects according to Bleacher Report, six of them are either shortstops or catchers, positions the Cubs are currently strong at.