Rizzo fires back at Kris Bryant trade rumors

Jeff Curry- USA Today Sports

Jeff Curry- USA Today Sports

As part of their early offseason discussions, according to sources, the Cubs have indicated to other teams they are willing to discuss trade proposals for nearly all of the players on their roster and those sources say that includes Bryant, who struggled in 2018, batting.272 with 13 homers in 102 games. Per ESPN's Buster Olney, that includes 2015 MVP third baseman Kris Bryant.

But it's possible that the Cubs will trade him, perhaps as soon as this winter.

"As I said, like most teams, we will listen to anything from other clubs".

Untouchables? "It's semantics", said Theo Epstein, who is not shopping either Rizzo or Bryant in trade talks. "I think it sends the wrong message", Epstein said. "I mean, there would be guys that, given what we're trying to accomplish, it would be virtually impossible to envision a deal that would make sense to move them". Normally a 25-30 a year homerun hitter Bryant managed only 13 homers, along with a career-worst.272 average.

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And nobody is more important to that than Bryant, the best overall hitter on the roster - who was hampered and idled for lengthy stretches last season by left shoulder soreness. Bryant made almost $11 million last season and is likely to keep earning more as he nears free agency following the 2021 season.

We've seen it all already this winter.

Bryant is under team control through 2021, so trading him seems unlikely while those years of team control also make him an appealing trade target. For starters, the Cubs have tried and failed multiple times to re-sign Bryant long-term.

What is sure to be an interesting winter for the Chicago Cubs just got a bit more interesting less than two weeks before Thanksgiving.

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