Man, Jim Bowden ponders trade deadline possibilities and hot stove wheeling and dealing the same way I run a franchise on MLB The Show. No holds barred, anything goes. To say he didn’t disappoint in his latest piece is putting it mildly because there are some possibilities here that will undoubtedly make Chicago Cubs fans pull out their hair.
That’s not to say they’re all far-fetched, because there’s not. Some actually just reiterate reports we’ve heard for weeks on-end now. But without further ado, let’s just dive right in and talk through some of these scenarios Bowden speculated on in The Athletic (subscription required):
Chicago Cubs Rumors: A return to Boston for Craig Kimbrel and Anthony Rizzo
The Red Sox have surprised the baseball world, entering play Wednesday 19 games above .500 and in first place in the American League East. Manager Alex Cora has returned from his one-year suspension to emerge as a potential AL Manager of the Year finalist, but his team likely needs reinforcements if it’s to hold off the likes of Tampa Bay, Toronto and New York.
Enter Bowden’s first potential trade deadline move – one he described as a ‘dream’ scenario for the Red Sox: Chicago sending not only Craig Kimbrel to Boston, but also including Anthony Rizzo, in a homecoming of sorts for the two players.
Of course, the Sox initially drafted Rizzo in the sixth round way back in 2007. That started the career-long relationship between the three-time All-Star and Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer that wound up with his arrival in the Windy City and a World Series championship. Boston has a glaring need at first and Rizzo brings not only Gold Glove-caliber defense, but a winning pedigree and postseason experience.
Kimbrel spent from 2016 to 2018 with the Red Sox, playing a key role in the team’s 2018 World Series title, notching 42 saves before foraying into free agency, where he wound up signing with the Cubs halfway through the 2019 campaign. Adding a future Hall of Fame closer certainly improves Boston’s chances come October – and there’s familiarity on both sides of the equation.