Report: Cubs in trade talks for hot-hitting catcher
Jake Roth - USA Today Sports
The Chicago Cubs told veteran catcher Miguel Montero to hit the road last month after some selfish comments to reporters about Jake Arrieta's lackluster performance holding runners on base.
The team is young at the catching position, however, 25-year old Willson Contreras is a star in the making for the Cubs and they have rookie Victor Caratini as his backup.
However, Cubs management is still pondering making a move for a veteran backstop presence for the second half of the season and potential playoff run.
"Tigers, Cubs staying in contact regarding possible Alex Avila trade; Avila's .938 OPS this year is best of any MLB catcher," MLB.com Insider Jon Morosi posted on Tuesday.
Avila is batting .292 with 11 homers and 29 RBI with an impressive .420 on-base percentage this season. He also has some value at first base with 15 starts at the position this season. The 30-year old catcher is only owed $2 million for the 2017 season as he will test the free agent market after the season.
For his major league career, he has batted .244 with 84 homers and 322 RBI. He made the All-Star game back in 2011.
This trade might be a savvy move by the Cubs as he would mentor Contreras and keep him fresh for remaining few months of the season and then head to free agency. As it always does, it will depend on what type of prospects the Tigers will be asking for Avila. If the prospect cost is minimal, this trade could likely happen in the next two weeks.