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Cub Tracks digests the news

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Trade him, and him, and him, and other bullets

Chicago Cubs v Arizona Diamondbacks
will we still be friends after you’re traded?
Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Oh yeah! Happy Saturday! Let’s trade everyone! Buster Olney must be paid by the click, or he must have better stuff than I do. Holy Jon Heyman, Buster! I want what Buster’s smokin’. Bad craziness. And it’s driving a fake-news cycle.

Let’s hope that cycle runs out of gas quick. Its tires are already flat.

So much silly season, so early. Enjoy! As always * means autoplay on, or annoying ads, or both (directions to remove for Firefox and Chrome).

Cubs News and Notes:

“I answered a general question about whether we have untouchables. Like most every organization, we will listen to anything, but that’s just an operating philosophy.

“We are lucky to have some impact players and we are looking to add to them, not subtract.” — Theo Epstein.

  • Mark Feinsand (MLB.com*): These are each team’s top trade candidates. “Teams are more willing to trade than ever before, meaning we’ll see a number of moves in the weeks and months ahead.”
  • Evan Altman (Cubs Insider): Some agents believe Cubs won’t spend big, Scott Boras (maybe) not among them. “...this all seems to come down to the idea that Boras is protecting his client’s best interest by not publicly eliminating the Cubs from the conversation.”
  • Tony Andracki (NBC Sports Chicago*): 8 Cubs takeaways from MLB GM Meetings. “The areas we’re looking to address are our position group and the bullpen,” Epstein said.
  • Patrick Mooney (The Athletic {$}): Yu Darvish is in the middle of an uncertain next phase for the Cubs. “He’s in a good place mentally to go forward next year,” Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer said.
  • Bill Thompson (Wrigleyville-Baseball Prospectus): 2019 Player Profile: Jen-Ho Tseng. “Perhaps the time has come to move on from the soft-tossing right-hander?”
  • Sahadev Sharma (The Athletic {$}): Postcard from California: How much will David Ross and Willson Contreras factor into the 2019 Cubs season? “...all a media-driven non-story.” Brett Taylor expands. ic
  • Lauren Comitor (The Athletic {$}): Why the Cubs should work to be part of the solution to domestic violence — without Addison Russell. “The Cubs may be committed to rehabilitation, but you can’t try to solve the problems of someone who doesn’t believe he has any.”
  • Buster Olney (ESPN*): Cubs open to trading 3B Kris Bryant. Just wow.
  • Chris Cwik (Yahoo Sports): Cubs reportedly willing to trade Bryant, but there’s a pretty significant catch. “The only way it’s happening is if a team trades its entire franchise to the Cubs.”
  • Gordon Wittenmyer (Chicago Sun-Times* {$}): Staying power: Bryant remains at center of Cubs’ 2019 plans. “If Bryant were on another team we’d be trying hard to trade for him,” team president Theo Epstein said Friday. Paul Sullivan also has words to that effect.
  • Brendan Miller (Cubs Insider): Signing Bryce Harper would cost Cubs around $20M in penalties. “The real question becomes whether ownership wants to pay the surcharges and fees in addition to a payroll that’s already increased compared to recent seasons...”
  • Jim Callis (MLB.com*): Watch Cubs prospects in AFL action Saturday. SS Nico Hoerner, LHP Justin Steele, OF D.J. Wilson, 2B Trent Giambrone are all to participate Saturday night at 8 p.m. ET on the MLB Network.

Current 40-man roster, updated daily. Bryce Harper and Manny Machado are conspicuously absent.

Food for Thought: