Cubs Rumors: Anthony Rizzo re-signs with Yankees on multi-year deal

Championship Series - Houston Astros v New York Yankees - Game Four
Championship Series - Houston Astros v New York Yankees - Game Four / Elsa/GettyImages

It felt almost like a foregone conclusion, but according to Ken Rosenthal, longtime Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo is returning to the Yankees on a multi-year deal after turning down New York's qualifying offer earlier this week.

A reunion with Chicago always seemed like a long shot, but now the Cubs will officially look to shore up a position that was woefully unproductive in 2022, with the Frank Schwindel experiment going off the rails after a surprising second-half breakout the year prior. Slugging prospect Matt Mervis will likely get a look in the spring and the Cubs are also reportedly interested in the likes of Trey Mancini, Josh Bell and Jose Abreu.

Cubs never really had a chance to bring back Anthony Rizzo

The deal, reportedly a two-year pact worth somewhere in the $17 million range annually, also contains an option for a third year - which would take Rizzo through his age 36 season. Despite a major drop in batting average this year, Rizzo still managed an .817 OPS and 131 OPS+, due largely to his 32 home runs, tying a career-best mark he reached on three separate occasions with the Cubs.

Of course, Rizzo left a lasting legacy on the North Side of Chicago - going from the young buck on a rebuilding team to an unofficial captain and one of the most popular players in franchise history. The image of his outstretched mitt closing around a throw from Kris Bryant in Cleveland six years ago is one that will live on in Cubs fans' memories forever.

Next. 3 early suitors for Willson Contreras in free agency. dark

But, regardless of that legacy, it always felt likely Rizzo would return to the Bronx this winter. How things ended between the two sides in Chicago always, at least to me, made a reunion feel awfully unlikely - and now, it's a done deal. Rizzo will return to the Yankees and look to erase a World Series drought that dates back to 2009.