I wanted to do a deeper dive and analyze, with the Chicago Cubs now being tabbed as buyers at the trade deadline, precisely who the means we can expect to see leaving the organization for whomever the front office acquires. One name I keep circling back to is Yonathan Perlaza.
Currently, amid a breakout season, Perlaza is slashing .301/.398./.562 with 15 HR, 56 RBIs, 29 doubles, and a 138 wRC+ in just north of 300 ABs in Triple-A; you may be wondering why the Cubs haven’t called him up.
Given his ability to play right field and left field, in addition to second base, which he has moved away from this season, it appears the Cubs just aren’t committed to finding an everyday spot for him with Ian Happ, Mike Tauchman, and Seiya Suzuki in the outfield. Cody Bellinger switching back and forth from 1B and CF lately complicates the matter, and Christopher Morel is already a backup option when needed.
Complicating matters further is that Perlaza’s minor league free agent deal is expiring this year, and there’s a strong chance the Cubs will lose him anyway. Therefore, given his MLB readiness and inability to crack the main roster, it makes all the sense for him to be moved so the Cubs don’t waste the last six years of his career for nothing.
Think of it as the opposite of when the Cubs are in sell mode. As we’ve seen, they will sell off their pending free agents to at least walk away with something. This time, however, it’s more of a sell-off of pending free-agent minor leaguers because the Cubs are looking to buy. As common sense as that seems, this scenario fits the mold for a player like Perlaza explicitly, given that he can immediately be inserted onto a 40-man roster, get called up, and have his service time started.
Chicago Cubs: Who might be the best fit for Perlaza via trade?
Originally, the fit between the Rockies and the Cubs for Yonathan Perlaza felt like a great fit, but Cron has now been dealt to the Angels. Still on the board though, are the Washington Nationals, regarding third baseman Jeimer Candelario.
Regarding the Candelario mention, the Nationals make sense, with Corey Dickerson hitting the market as a left fielder this winter. Looking over the Pirates' needs, regarding David Bednar, the Pirates will lose Andrew Mccutcheon whether he’s traded at the deadline, or once the offseason hits as a pending free agent.
As it sits, Perlaza fits a lot of team molds as a player who looks to be ready for a call-up and can find room for an outfielder. With one day left until the trade deadline, expect rumors to swirl and more names to fly off the board. We hope the Cubs add, at least marginally. Bednar and Candelario are good fits for the Cubs as they look to make a playoff push for the first time since 2020.