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Trading the Core

Cubs DNA team looks at an uncomfortable situation: trading from the core. Here's a look at the situations and rumors surrounding Schwarber, Willson, Bryant, Heyward and others.

Out of Schwarber, Bryant, and Willson, which one is at risk of regression and at likely peak trade value at this current moment?

Brooke: This is a tough question, I think that Schwarber could regress but I don't think he's at peak trade value. I guess Contreras or KB is at peak trade value.

Matt: I think Schwarber is the most at-risk for regression but even at peak value I don't think he brings back much. Slugging outfielders aren't exactly rare that'ss why I think Contreras makes the most sense IF they trade someone.

Pronk: Schwarber. He's had extended slumps before, and I worry about it going forward.

Staci: Willson is clearly at peak value. He's a two-time All-Star who shows signs of being an elite offensive player. Sell an AL team that he could be even more valuable logging some games as a DH to help with his injury issues and he'll fetch the best value.

Steven: Schwarber. If anything were to happen to the bat he loses all value.

In terms of the future and factoring in Caratini, does Willson Contreras have more value on the Cubs roster or as a trade return?

Brooke: Caratini had negative WAR in 2017 and 2018 and then put together a decent year in 2019, and suddenly people want him as the Cubs starting catcher? I. DON'T. GET. IT.

Matt: I don't want to trade him just to make a move, but if you can get a stud CF or 2B then I consider it. You have a strong replacement on the roster and could potentially fill Willson's bat in the lineup with one that would be on the field more.

Pronk: As a trade return. Especially since you could get a decent defender for cheap.

Staci: As a trade return, sadly. He has a replacement percolating in the minors, and getting a return for him in a trade could help do away with "the window" and keep the Cubs consistently competitive.

Steven: On the roster. He has the potential to be an MVP. Great arm, an above-average bat that is hard to find at the position. He is working on his pitch framing and the numbers show he is getting better in that area.

Assuming you can only keep one to play LF, would you rather trade Schwarber and sign Castellanos, or keep Schwarber and let Castellanos walk?

Brooke: Castellanos walks just over 6% of the time, and I really think that the Cubs need to get back to being patient at the plate. Schwarber is my pick for sure.

Matt: Schwarber. I loved the addition of Nick and think he'd be a great full-time addition, but the excitement of the playoff run is over. I think he's still a strong but not elite bat going forward.

Pronk: I'd rather keep Schwarber over Castellanos long term. For 2020 alone, it's Castellanos

Staci: I'm keeping Schwarbs. I believe in his second-half success more than I believe in what Castellanos did, and he's a better defender.

Steven: Keep Schwarber. Younger, cheaper, a better defender. I do love Castellanos but if the budget is tight again then I'm keeping Schwarber.

Kris Bryant wins his arb case and will hit free agency a year early. Does he make sense to trade then?

Brooke: I guess the Cubs have to decide what do they want their IF to look like for the next 5-7 years. Are they extending Baez and making him the heart of the infield? Are they extending Rizzo for the rest of his 30s? Or are they going to get someone new to anchor the Cubs for the next 7 years and that spot more than likely is third base? Are Cubs in Win now mode or Win in 2022 mode?

Matt: I think you have to consider it. We obviously have no insider info regarding KB, but it just feels different with him. Maybe it's recency bias, maybe its the frustration with the arbitration case even happening, but it feels like he has one foot out the door. Problem is that more superstar trades don't end well for the team trading away the star. Le sigh.

Pronk: Yeah, then it might make sense to have a Yankees in 2016 retooling year. Not sure it'd make sense to go all-in on 2020 without future plans.

Staci: Only if you're signing a legitimate replacement for his offensive production.

Steven: Are the Cubs signing Rendon then? If not then I'm not trading Bryant.

Kris Bryant loses his arb case and will be with the cubs 2 years. Does he make sense to trade then?

Brooke: I'd stick with KB.

Matt: I'd prefer he stay with the Cubs, but if they were overwhelmed then I might be okay with trading him.

Pronk: I'd listen to overwhelming offers.

Staci: I'd have to be bowled over.

Steven: No. Unless I'm sending him to Anaheim for Trout.


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