The latest Kris Bryant rumors connect the Cubs slugger to the Boston Red Sox.
I know, it’s hot stove season – but for Cubs fans, it’s more like Kris Bryant rumors season. We’ve already seen the former National League MVP connected to multiple teams, namely the Washington Nationals, in recent weeks. If early indications are any sign, things aren’t slowing down, either.
According to the Chicago Tribune, the Cubs talked about a potential Kris Bryant trade with the Boston Red Sox this summer. That seems like an odd fit given Boston finished dead-last in the AL East at 24-36, but the club cleared a ton of payroll early in the year in the trade that sent former MVP Mookie Betts and left-hander David Price to the Los Angeles Dodgers.
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Even then, bringing Bryant in with just a year (and at that point, some change) left on his deal seems curious to me. The Red Sox must have envisioned signing Bryant long-term because bringing him in to close out 2020 and spend just one more year calling Fenway Park home makes very little sense otherwise.
I’m not sure what a return in such a deal could have looked like. Boston’s farm system leaves plenty to be desired – but perhaps there is a guy or two Theo Epstein or Jed Hoyer had their eye on.
Or perhaps there is no fire where there’s smoke. While that Tribune report connects Boston to Bryant, a Boston Sports Journal piece directly contradicts it, saying that no serious discussions ever took place between the Red Sox and Cubs and a deal taking shape this winter is “highly unlikely.”
So what do we make from all these Kris Bryant rumors? The Chicago Cubs are going to trade a guy who helped end a century-plus long drought, won Rookie of the Year and followed it up with MVP and is one of the most accomplished players in recent memory.
Why? It’s all about the dollars in the team offices at Gallagher Way right now. Cubs owner Tom Ricketts has made it clear – the recent landmark designation of Wrigley Field and the subsequent federal tax credits, which could provide north of $100 million, will not shore up the baseball operations budget.
What to do? Sell off everything that’s not bolted to the floor. Make no mistake: trading Bryant is just the beginning of what’s going to take place this offseason on the North Side.