Given the freeze that’s settled over the sport with the ongoing MLB lockout, it’s hard for anyone to have a good idea what their favorite team will look like come Opening Day. There is still a plethora of impact free agents available and the trade market never really got rolling prior to the lockout. The Chicago Cubs are certainly no exception to this feeling of uncertainty – for multiple reasons.
Jed Hoyer shocked a lot of folks with the Marcus Stroman signing – and the team is reportedly among the frontrunners for Carlos Correa. But regardless of whether or not Chicago pulls off that signing, there’s a decent chance Hoyer looks to capitalize at the trade deadline if the team isn’t in the driver’s seat in the National League Central.
Here are three Chicago Cubs players who could be on the move prior to the trade deadline – perhaps even before the team reports to spring training in Arizona.
3 Chicago Cubs who could be traded before the deadline: #3: Willson Contreras
Let’s just get this obvious one out of the way. With no extension talks taking shape prior to the lockout, Willson Contreras may very well have already played his last game on the North Side. The two-time All-Star backstop is heading into his final year of control and has been long rumored as a potential trade piece.
Given the weakness of the catcher’s market – paired with the signing of Yan Gomes – Chicago is well set up to move the fan favorite sooner rather than later. Contreras is coming off a 4.1 bWAR season in which he batted .237/.340/.438 and threw out a below-average 21 percent of base stealers.
Watching Contreras get sent packing would be another tough blow for Cubs fans, but given his reported irritation with the organization and his contract status, there’s no one more likely to be dealt on this roster than him.