Chicago Cubs Rumors: Marlins couldn’t pull off Wilson Contreras trade

(Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)
(Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images) /

Rather than sell low on Kris Bryant and Javier Baez and tear the roster down to the studs last winter, Chicago Cubs president Jed Hoyer took a wait-and-see approach, holding onto the core and, instead, trading ace right-hander Yu Darvish to the San Diego Padres.

That sent the signal the team was likely destined for a trade deadline selling spree. Instead, the Cubs have defied expectations and enter play Saturday nine games above .500 after an emotional win over the rival Cardinals on Friday afternoon in front of a packed Wrigley Field.

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Late in the contest, catcher Willson Contreras popped an opposite-field blast, giving his team some insurance after rallying from down 5-1 in the middle innings. But had trade talks between the Cubs and Miami Marlins gone differently last offseason, the Venezuelan backstop mightn’t have been a Cub at all this year.

We knew the Fish had their eye on Contreras last winter. We also knew the return would be centered around young players rather than established big leaguers. Now, the Miami Herald has the details of just what the Marlins offered Chicago in exchange for the two-time All-Star catcher.

Per this new report, Miami was going to send a catcher of their own, Jorge Alfaro, to the North Side, along with a pair of third-rounders in Peyton Burdick and Zach McCambley.

The inclusion of Alfaro makes a great deal of sense. We’ve seen the options behind Contreras on the depth chart this season and, well, suffice to say none of them are ready to be the guy behind the dish on a daily basis. Alfaro, who is under team control for several more seasons, could have been the bridge to a guy like Miguel Amaya down the road.

As for Burdick and McCambley, neither rank in the Marlins’ organization top 10 prospects, although in the latest list, Burdick comes close at #12 and has drawn rave reviews from talent evaluators for both his skills and makeup.

McCambley, a big spin-rate pitcher, is a starter – but could wind up as a bullpen guy, depending on how well his control develops in the Minors. All told, though, Burdick would’ve been the headliner here and it’s hard to justify trading Contreras, who’s shown noted improvements with the glove and continues to be a ‘plus’ at the dish for such a package.

Next. 2 Cubs who've justified team's faith & 1 who hasn't. dark

The looming departures of Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo and Javier Baez have most of our attentions right now, but Contreras isn’t far behind – set to hit free agency at the end of the 2022 campaign. This won’t be the last trade rumor we see regarding the fan favorite. But it’s certainly interesting to see these packages with so many potentially tradable assets on the roster right now.