Chicago Cubs Rumors: Three players that could be traded

Chicago Cubs v Toronto Blue Jays
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Christopher Morel, Ian Happ
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Three players the Chicago Cubs could trade: Ian Happ

Ian Happ is entering his final season with the Chicago Cubs before reaching free agency next offseason. Happ had a breakout season with the Cubs in 2022 as he earned National League All-Star and National League Gold Glove honors for the first time in his career. Offensively, Happ posted a wRC+ of 120 in 641 plate appearances last season while posting a slash line of .271/.342/.440/.781.

For the Cubs, the question will be whether or not they feel Happ's 2022 production is sustainable. Happ did drop his strikeout percentage by 6%, down to 23.2% from 29.2% in 2021, but his BABIP of .336 last season did indicate that they may have been some amount of luck involved with his offensive performance.

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What is important to emphasize is that the Cubs would not be moving Happ for the mere purpose of not wanting to risk losing him for nothing at the end of the 2023 season. The Cubs are expected to return to contention in 2023 and there is a case to be made that keeping Happ helps the team achieve that success. However, if the Cubs have an opportunity to trade for a potential top-of-the-rotation starting pitcher that is under team control for multiple seasons, Happ is likely going to be one of the first pieces involved in the trade.