Cubs: Ranking the team’s least likely big-name trade candidates

Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports /
1 of 3
Chicago Cubs / Anthony Rizzo
(Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) /

The Cubs will look different next year, but I don’t expect trades for these three.

This is the first offseason where I can genuinely believe the Chicago Cubs will undergo a badly-needed transformation since the team turned the corner a half-decade ago. New president of baseball operations Jed Hoyer will, right away, have a chance to leave his mark on the club and I doubt he’ll waste any time getting to work.

The team has several notable non-tender candidates and, on that Dec. 2 date, the first dominos will fall for Chicago. But looking past that, we’ve already heard plenty of Kris Bryant trade rumors, reports connecting Kyle Schwarber to potential suitors and speculated about the perfect fit for Willson Contreras.

But there are three guys I have a hard time seeing the Cubs trade, regardless of how big of a roster  shake-up is needed. Let’s get started with the obvious in first baseman Anthony Rizzo.

Rizzo, 31, is coming off a fairly pedestrian offensive year in which he batted .222/.342/.414 – still good for a 103 OPS+ in a season where bats seemed to struggle more than usual in general. But he’s been as consistent as they come for years now – and also brought home his fourth Gold Glove Award for his work at first base. 

Chicago picked up his $16.5 million team option for 2021; hopefully, Hoyer uses that time to work out a long-term extension with his club’s unofficial captain. It’s hard to imagine the Cubs picked up that option only to turn around and trade him given his standing both in the clubhouse and with the community, at large.