Those Pete Alonso-to-the-Cubs rumors aren't going to stop anytime soon

With no extension talks between the Mets and their star first baseman, expect a lot of speculation connecting Alonso to Chicago over the course of the season and into next offseason.

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Mets president of baseball operations David Stearns said this week it's likely first baseman Pete Alonso will hit free agency at season's end, with Alonso echoing that sentiment, saying the two sides have not discussed any sort of long-term extension to this point.

Alonso also made it clear he loves playing in New York and sees himself as 'a lifelong Met' - but, as we all know, that doesn't always translate to a guy spending his career in one spot. Just ask Anthony Rizzo, who was this generation's 'Mr. Cub' before he was traded to the Yankees as part of the 2021 trade deadline fire sale led by Jed Hoyer.

"I love it here. I definitely have envisioned being a lifelong Met — that is something that I have definitely thought about. I love New York, it’s a special place for my family and I definitely thought about the idea and would welcome the idea, but I can’t predict the future. I just want to focus on the season."

Pete Alonso, via NY Post

The Mets were among baseball's biggest disappointments in 2023, going from preseason World Series favorites to a 75-87 fourth-place team that sold off many of its biggest names midseason. There's still a lot of talent on the roster, to be sure, but New York faces an uphill battle in a loaded NL East.

Cubs could pursue Mets slugger Pete Alonso in a deadline trade - or look to sign him in free agency next offseason

It's certainly not out of the realm of possibility the Mets end up as sellers come July again this season - and given the questions the Cubs have themselves at first base, we could see Alonso connected to Chicago as a trade target. Even if that doesn't happen though, it's hard to envision a scenario (outside of a Michael Busch breakout campaign) that would sideline the Cubs in the Alonso free agent sweepstakes next winter.

The Cubs haven't had a 30-homer performance from a player since 2019. Now, we can debate back and forth all day about whether or not that's something a team needs to be a legitimate contender, but Alonso is one of the best run-producers in the game - plain and simple. Since he broke into the big leagues, nobody has gone yard more than the three-time All-Star and former Rookie of the Year.

Chicago has plenty to do in the roster-building department this spring as it is, so even looking ahead to this summer or next winter when Alonso will likely be available yet again is probably getting ahead of ourselves. But the fit is there and it seems pretty likely that this will be a storyline to watch over the course of the 2024 season.