For our Cubs weekly update, with the start of a new week, it is time to take a look back at the week that was for Chicago Cubs baseball. Brace yourselves, Cubs fans. This was a week that we won’t soon forget.
Normally this update is filled with events from the games from the previous week, but this update will be a bit different. One Cubs player did have a historic game to wrap up the week, but that was not the biggest story of the week.
General Manager Jed Hoyer was faced with a difficult task this week as he had to decide what to do with the core of the Chicago Cubs. Hoyer and the Cubs have made some attempts to extend some of these players, but it became apparent that no deals were imminent.
Instead of trying to work out some extensions or try to play the season out, Hoyer made a bold decision and went with it. In the end, the roster was completely broken apart, and three of the biggest names in Cubs’ history are gone.
Hoyer began the fire sale at the All-Star Break, sending Joc Pederson to the Atlanta Braves. Things were slow until about 16 hours before the Trade Deadline, and that is when the fire sale began.
Anthony Rizzo was the first to go, traded to the New York Yankees in a stunning move. Rizzo is beloved by Cubs fans, and this was a move that won’t sit well with many fans of the Cubs.
Next to go was Javier Baez, as he was sent to the New York Mets to play with his friend Francisco Lindor. Just minutes before the Trade Deadline passed, Kris Bryant was sent to the San Francisco Giants.
Rizzo, Bryant, Baez were all gone in a span of less than 24 hours. All three players played a key role in winning the 2016 World Series but will now be chasing a ring with another team.
Ryan Tepera, Jake Marisnick, Craig Kimbrel, Trevor Williams, and Andrew Chafin were also sent packing, leaving the roster completely decimated. It’s hard to imagine one team completely tearing down their team in this way again, but Hoyer was applauded by other executives across baseball for his work.
Baez, Bryant, and Rizzo all started off strong with their new teams, hitting a home run in their first game. Things are going to be different around Wrigley Field for the next few years, but those three players will all be legends in Chicago forever.
Nice Deal with White Sox
The Cubs and White Sox have a long history of making deals together, and the Cubs have gotten the short end of these deals lately. A trade for Jose Quintana helped land the Cubs the World Series in 2016, but it also set the White Sox up for the next decade.
This time around, Jed Hoyer appeared to get the upper hand in a deal that sent Kimbrel to the South Side. Nick Madrigal was the big piece of the puzzle that came back in that trade, and he should be at the top of the Cubs lineup for the next five years.
The Cubs were able to land some other top prospects in these other deals, but getting Madrigal was a nice move.
Ortega Taking Advantage
With that many players being traded away, the Cubs now clearly have some holes in the lineup. This is a chance for some role players or younger players to step into the lineup and show the front office that they should be a part of the future.
Rafael Ortega is a player that has been getting plenty of starts for the past few months, but he is now the new leadoff hitter for the Cubs. Ortega broke out in a big way on Sunday, blasting three home runs in a loss to the Washington Nationals.