ESPN MLB writer Jeff Passan recently released an article titled “MLB trade deadline - Who could rock the next 10 days? Plus biggest stars available and teams looking to add” ahead of baseball's busiest transaction period. He had plenty to say about the Cubs and their potential transactions, but the most notable takeaway was that Kris Bryant is "as good as gone".
This assertion doesn't come as a surprise considering the countless trade rumors that have surrounded the Cubs as of late, including increased rumblings about potential moves over a weekend period. The stove has been fairly warm recently, but one wouldn't call it "hot" just yet due to a lack of concrete trade partners or proposals. Now, Passan has turned up the temperature a bit with this article as he fully expects Bryant to be traded along with Cubs closer Craig Kimbrel.
Passan lists the Mets and Phillies as ideal fits for Bryant because both teams lack production from the third base position and various outfield spots. He also added that Kris Bryant’s defensive versatility makes him an intriguing option to almost all teams that are looking to buy at the deadline.
Passan did not mention what a return for Kris Bryant would look like, but he asserted that the package for Kimbrel would likely not be as substantial as what the Cubs paid for Aroldis Chapman back in 2016. That blip may be an indicator that the Cubs will not receive a team's top-three prospect in return for Bryant alone as well. There is still a lot that needs to play out over the next ten days before the trade deadline, but key players departing the Cubs is inevitable.