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Rumor: Cubs’ Kris Bryant, Craig Kimbrel almost certainly getting traded

Cubs, Kris Bryant, Craig Kimbrel

The Chicago Cubs already began selling by dealing Joc Pederson to the Atlanta Braves, and they have more moves to make ahead of the MLB trade deadline. According to ESPN’s Jeff Passan, Kris Bryant “is almost certain to get dealt” and “is as good as gone.” Closer Craig Kimbrel is also likely going to be moved thanks to his bounce-back dominance this season.

There have been Bryant trade rumblings for a while now as he gets set to hit free agency. The versatile star and the Cubs both got off to hot starts this season, but a huge slump in June has marred his season a bit. Meanwhile, Chicago has fallen down the standings after sitting atop the NL Central not too long ago.

The New York Mets are a popular trade suitor for Bryant. The Washington Nationals have also recently been linked to the former MVP. There will surely be other teams involved.

As for Kimbrel, he boasts a 0.53 ERA with 58 strikeouts in just 33 2/3 innings pitched as the Cubs closer this season. After some early struggles with the club when he was first acquired in 2019, he started to find his groove at the end of last season and has carried over that form to 2021. Passan even suggests the future Hall of Famer could fetch even more than Bryant. Kimbrel has a club option for $16 million in 2022, so a deal for him wouldn’t necessarily be a rental.

Chicago could also look to make trades involving Anthony Rizzo and Javier Baez, but the current belief is that’s less likely. The Cubs are exploring possible extensions with those players, though it does feel like a long shot that anything will get done.