Which Cubs players are untouchable in trades?
|Thursday, July 26, 2018, 9:15 AM- -|
While we were sitting around the CubsHQ.com lunch room eating finger sandwiches and sipping mint iced teas, a discussion broke out regarding who, if anyone, on the Cubs was untouchable as trade bait.
As you can imagine names were tossed about by everyone, each having their favorites and voicing their reasons why, but in the end, it was determined that the only true list should come from the one guy who is rarely wrong, and so here I go.
In order of who is most untouchable to who is least untouchable.
Jon Lester – Every team needs an ace and Lester is the Cubs ace unquestionably.
Willson Contreras – Breakout superstar in the making. Catchers are hard to find.
Kris Bryant – When he is healthy he is one of the best in baseball.
Albert Almora. Jr. – On his way to being one of the all time best CF in Cubs history.
Anthony Rizzo – The engine that drives this train and the heart of the team.
Javier Baez – The most gifted athlete on the team.
Addison Russell – Will win multiple gold gloves and All-Star invites as a Cub.
The above seven guys are without question the best of the best on this team. Short of working a trade for Max Scherzer that might include one of the above I cannot imagine anyone in baseball today that would warrant trading these guys.
Losing one of these guys would mean that a scramble would have to take place to fill their position and good teams do not break up core players. See your very own Chicago Blackhawks as an example. Yes, they traded some fan favorites, but Toews, Kane, Seabrook, Keith, etc are all still there. Same thing here.
The next group is a bit trickier because they include fan favorites, but they aren’t an indispensable piece of this team. They are important pieces and for sure you better get something really good in return, like Chris Archer, for example.
By position for this group.
Pitchers – Adbert Alzolay, Carl Edwards, Jr., and Kyle Hendricks. Young, controllable, and the next level best the Cubs have right now. All critical to maintaining a level of goodness to the franchise that Theo and Jed are looking to do.
Position Players – David Bote, Ian Happ, and Kyle Schwarber. Of these guys, Happ is the most important as he is likely the heir apparent to Ben Zobrist. If the rumors are true a couple of names on this list might be going to Tampa for Archer, or somewhere else for another pitcher.
All strong franchises try to hold onto as many key people as they can, especially once they get to the level the Cubs are at right now. While building to this, teams will sometimes trade away someone they love to make themselves better at another position. The Cubs are past that right now and holding onto the top list is vital and holding onto the next level list is hopeful. A big difference.
Look, anything can happen. We are not privy to medicals, or in-house issues that can cause changes to the Cubs list. From 20,000 feet away, the list looks like this, from 90 feet away, possibly a different story.
5 ½ days to go before we see if I was right or wrong. I know you will be happy to let me know either way.