Kris Bryant has continued to express openness to a contract extension with the Cubs, but he reiterated today there’s not yet been any discussion between his representatives and the organization (via Patrick Mooney of the Athletic). The 29-year-old isn’t ruling out the possibility of a long-term deal coming together eventually, even though he’s currently on track to reach free agency after the season. “I’m not looking at it as my last year (as a Cub),” Bryant said (via Mooney). “Who knows what year it could be? I could have 10 more years here. Who knows? I could come back as a coach. I could live in Chicago. I don’t know.” Regardless of what happens after 2021, it’s clear Bryant will open the season with the Cubs after an offseason of trade rumors didn’t result in a deal.
Elsewhere in the game’s central divisions:
- Jake Odorizzi is moving on from the Twins after a three-year run in Minnesota, but the right-hander said during yesterday’s Astros introduction that the Twin Cities “hold a special place” in his heart and left the door open for a return down the road (link via the Minneapolis Star-Tribune’s Phil Miller). “I loved my time in Minnesota,” said Odorizzi, whose two-year deal with the Astros became official this week. “Maybe there’s a time to circle back after this stint [in Houston] is done.” Odorizzi noted that he originally hoped a new deal would come together, but he saw the writing on the wall when the Twins inked fellow free agent J.A. Happ to a one-year, $8MM deal earlier in the winter.
- A few teams have announced their intention to start out with a six-man rotation. That doesn’t seem to be on the table for the Reds, who are going to open the season with a five-man starting staff, manager David Bell said (via MLB.com’s Mark Sheldon). Luis Castillo, Sonny Gray and Tyler Mahle are obvious locks, while Bell suggested Wade Miley is likely to get a shot at a rebound season as a starter. That leaves Michael Lorenzen, Tejay Antone, Jeff Hoffman and José De León in a battle for the final job. The pitchers who don’t earn the season-opening rotation spot figure to start off as multi-inning relief options.
- Reliever Anthony Gose is impressing the Indians as a non-roster invitee, writes Zack Meisel of the Athletic. Continuing to throw in the upper-90’s and now incorporating a slider, Gose has struck out four without issuing a walk through his first three Cactus League innings. The former outfielder has attracted the attention of a few teams since moving to the mound in 2017 but has yet to get back to the big leagues as a pitcher. Continued strike-throwing is the key for Gose, who walked an untenable 21.5% of opposing hitters during his most recent minor league action in 2019.
Keep an eye on Tejay Antone this year for the Reds. He’s got some serious stuff
Agreed. Good movement, good control. I’m holding out hope that DeLeon finds his groove too, when he’s on he’s highly impressive.. would be a nice redemption arc as well, he’s run a gauntlet.
When he was a dodgers prospect, his slider? was nasty.
I always thought Edwin Jackson, Jose De Leon, and Nathan Eovaldi would have made awesome relievers.
The next Eric Gagne’s. In my mind.
Hopefully De Leon puts it all together and sticks in the rotation though. He’s fun to watch.
Thank you Johnny Superscout
thekid9, grow up!
Thank YOU, immature jerkoff
Yes…Antone is a player.
Bryant: “I could live in Chicago”.
There you have it Cubs fans. You haven’t lost Bryant, he could still live in Chicago
Who wouldn’t want to live in Chicago during the off-season? November to February is the best time of the year in the Windy City!
Yeah and play for the White Sox lol
Dumpster Divin Theo
Our future RF?
I could be wrong but after all the trade noise surrounding Bryant and the fact they haven’t even approached him with an extension I highly doubt a team that’s cutting payroll will commit to Bryant. I don’t even know what he’s worth right now to be honest. He’s got potential he was a stud coming up from the minors and his first couple seasons but he doesn’t seem like that same player as of late. Unfortunately for him I think his fate is sealed in Chicago. I think if he finishes the year a Cub it’ll be his last. If they’d gotten an offer of value for Bryant he’d already be elsewhere
Cubs are not likely to offer Bryant the $250+ million he’s going to be seeking. He’s just trying to say the right things
Ain’t nobody gonna be offering Bryant that money unless becomes the player he was pre-marriage
Are you insinuating that getting married brought his game down?
Game should have improved. current wife looks lot better than 1st (Boras).
Yes I am. He was skyrocketing to stardom and then..
2013 College POY
2014 Minor League POY
2016 NL MVP & WS Champ
2017-today, lost his power, swing, etc
Did he marry Mia Hamm? Seems like I’ve seen this movie before…
He put up similar numbers in 2019 as he did in 2016 and 2017.
Possibly the most ridiculous fan theory I’ve ever read
Well that sure is a convincing argument. It’s definitely the wife’s fault…you’ve made in clear. Couldn’t be any other reason involved like injuries, pandemics, normal extended cold streaks, etc. Yup, it’s obviously the wife’s fault.
All these other athletes in MLB, the NFL, and the NBA that struggle for a year or two must be in the same boat, huh? And then if they return to their previous form, it must mean they’ve gotten divorced, right?
Belurda that’s what I see too. Had he not done all that early in his career he would have been nontendered with schwarber but I think they are hoping for a rebound and a return of some value. I’m not saying he’s no good that’s overstating it but he’s not getting a long term lucrative deal without a monster 2021
The broads weaken the knees.
JD Martinez didn’t get the money he wanted either. Bryant is one of the most consistent hitters in MLB, save last year. If he wants to stay in Chicago he will. Might have to settle for a 5-125 but so what. Cubs would be foolish to prioritize any present Cub over Bryant. I hope they can come together on a deal.
5 years and $125 million for Kris Bryant???? Not even the Cubs are willing to do that for Kris Bryant at this point. He and his agent, Scott Boras, gambled on breaking the bank and they lost. They lost big!! Kris Bryant can’t stay healthy for two months why you inking him for 5 years. It is funny to see how his tone has completely changed. A couple of years ago, he had a vision of the day he broke the bank and signed elsewhere. He saw all the Cub fans ripping management apart for letting him go. Now, he is begging the Cubs through the media to offer him a deal. The Cubs will have no part of it ….. Why? Because if they offer him a deal …. He will take it!!! Beggars Cannot Be Choosy.
KB may have thought the way you describe, but what he’s said in public and to reporters has stayed pretty consistent.
1984: It’s not that hard to say the right thing. Doing the right thing is hard. This is true in pretty much all aspects of life. No, I didn’t get this from a fortune cookie. Sometimes the simplest thought is the right thought.
Bryant will never be re-signed as long as the Ricketts family owns the team. I still can’t figure out why they don’t sell and take their BILLION dollar profits if the Cubs (and the baseball business altogether) are causing such a financial hardship for them….even before the pandemic. Something just doesn’t add up here
Financial hardship? Bro? You seen the real estate around Wrigley lately? They own all of it. Bars, Restaurants, Hotels ….. They have literally turned the Cubs and Wrigley Field into Elvis and Graceland. They got slowed by the pandemic but …….
Pete no way Bryant is worth that right now. I’m not saying he couldn’t have a big 2021 but there’s a reason he was shopped and they couldn’t find a decent return to move him. What I saw from him his first year or two that would be worth that kind of money but nobody is going to gamble that kind of money on a return to form if he doesn’t mash this year. At one point Bryant was worth half someone’s farm system but things change.
If Bryant wanted his first team to consider extending him he had to pick a different agent. This was well known decades ago. Yes he’s posturing, saying the right things. Cubs should have traded him after his MVP season really…..
The Cubs offered him a $200 million extension in 2016/17 i believe and he rejected it. Filed a grievance over his service time instead of signing a contract that would have made service time manipulation moot. As was said Bryant/Boras bet on themselves and lost. Even if Bryant hits 60 HR’s, drives in 150, wins a gold glove and the NL MVP he is done in Wrigley after this season.
I think if he hits 60hrs he’ll be gone but only because the Cubs are tightening the payroll. I don’t think there is a bunch of ill will between the two. I mean it’s no secret the Cubs shopped Bryant and he isn’t crying. He definitely messed up not taking that extension but I don’t think that’ll be the reason he doesn’t resign. They just moved Darvish on what was essentially a salary dump. The Cubs opened the war chest trying to build a dynasty but after 2016 it never really happened like many thought it would. A number of bad deals has the Cubs trying to retool. I think if he kills it this year and if he doesn’t someone else will offer him a little more to try to rebuild his value and he’ll go where the money is the highest at that point
What happened to Kris Bryant already having one foot out the door because of the service time thing?
Bryant got no time to pack his bags, his foots outside the door
He’s got a date, he can’t be late, for the high hopes hailla ball, uh uh, uh uh, yeah!
This comment is on time. Love it.
He was shooting for the stars. Tryin to make a livin
Really wonder what happned to Bryant. He was arguably top 10 hitter in baseball from 2015-2017. Was 9th in wOBA, 12th in wRC+ and OPS, was one of just 3 players with an fWAR above 20 in those 3 seasons. He was trending upward too. He put up his best wOBA, walk rate, strikeout rate and OPS during that year. He hasn’t really had a bad full season yet, but he went from an elite hitter to just decent in just a few seasons.
His worst full-season OPS+ has been 121. He’s probably still a very good player.
I still think he’s good, just not very good. There’s a big difference between a guy who consistently puts up a 140-ish OPS+/wRC+ and a 120-ish OPs+/wRC+ guy.
Mlb1225. You are spot on. He has declined a good deal. The 120ish is still what is attributed to a ‘good’ player. The big question is how bad is that shoulder. He’s been hurt 2 out of the last 3 seasons. He’s exiting his prime very shortly and I’d stay as far as possible away from signing him.
I still think he’s good, just not very good.
He’s gone from a HOF level to an AS level. Folks seem to forget that he had an OPS of .903 in 2019, and was an AS.
I remember hearing the same thing about another 3B, about 10 years back. A high-level performer whose OPS took a hit due to injuries. The RS signed him, the injuries healed, and he continued on his HOF career. And about ten years before that, the RS acquired another 3B, coming off a down year, due to injuries, and still managed to perform at an AS-level.
Don’t underestimate the impact of injuries.
I really don’t see a significant decline, if we accept the short 2020 as injury driven, as seems to be the case. At peak he was a 140 OPS+ hitter, and as recently as 2019 he was a 130 OPS+ hitter. Lower, but statistically insignificant. His decline is more noticeable on the WAR side, and that’s partially injury related and how the Cubs have deployed him. Hitting wise, his skills are within his established range.
I think this simply comes down to expectations. Fans were expecting him to get better from his peak, even though there was no reason to believe that.
I don’t see a $200M deal for him, but a return to health and this hitting form and he can expect a George Springer-type deal.
He remains very good.
He also has had consistent nagging injuries since 2017, hopefully he stays healthy this year and gets back to his MVP form.
Injuries and probably better scouting reports on what he can’t hit. It’s just another tale people need to remember when they try to claim that a player will only get better because he’s still so young. Some players peak very early.
‘Better scouting reports’ happen in your first year. Not after 3,000 PAs. I had the same argument ten years ago with RS fans. Someone posted that his bad results the previous year in Seattle, was the result of the fact that he couldn’t hit a curve ball.
I was like, he had 12 years of a 105 OPS+, and now suddenly, the league discovered he couldn’t hit a curve?
More than likely, 2020 was an injury-filled, short year aberration.
Bryant will have a great year where ever he is in 2021 because it’s his contract year. Bryant has played a lot in the last 2 years when he was not 100 present, he was trying to help the Cubs.
Not if opponents continue to pitch him low and away. He cannot hit pitches low and away. Slider anyone?
That’s why it’s so hard to make the HOF…..you have to be great for a long time. Hopefully he gets himself healthy and back on track.
Didn’t you hear? Belurda has all the answers regarding his struggles…
Odo signs what could be a 3 year deal and refers to it as a “stint” before it’s even begun. I like the sentiment towards my favorite team though…
humphrey x boegarts
“I really didn’t want to sign with Astros, but they were the only team that made a decent offer”
They have played in the ALCS 4 straight years, why wouldn’t he want to join one of the best teams in all MLB? Despite all the haters.
Because those fans seem to think Houston and Boston were the only teams doing it. Imagine being that gullible.
A perfect marriage. A has-been team paying for a has-been player.
Due to a bum shoulder or whatever Bryant has lost his power. I think you’ll see a good average and high OBP from him this year but little else.
The ship sailed on whatever huge extension he thought he was getting.
After this year he’ll be 3 seasons removed from a season that justified it.
A Top 10 MVP finish-type season would certainly through a wrinkle into his negotiations
Bryant sounding desperate.
After virtually stealing 17.8 MM from the Twins in 2020 and delivering just 13.2 innings of work for that contract, it would seem that in deference to Odorzzi’s feelings about Minnesota (“Twin Cities “hold a special place” in his heart and left the door open for a return down the road . I loved my time in Minnesota.”) he could have returned there by communicating a willingness to accept a team friendly, short term contract. Since that did not take place, the Twins found it necessary to move on in a different direction. It would seem that: love, loyalty and guilt are always secondary to the all mighty dollar in today’s professional sports world.
Well Odo didn’t steal 17.8 million because they only played a 1/3 of a season. So he only “stole” a third of that money.
Twins probably didn’t want him on a multi year deal. With Balazovic and Duran about ready. Can’t say I blame them. I’m sure Odo was looking for 3/45ish to start the offseason. The 3/30 that he signed for is palatable but they made their choice to go ST w/ Happ before Odo’s price had dropped.
The Twinkies went with Happ when Odorizzi failed to come forward with a reasonable, team friendly contract despite his love of Minnesota and his rip of of the team’s $17.8MM based on his shortchange of performance to the 2020 team.
The Twins limited him in FA after an all-star year by offering the QO. He took it because teams weren’t going to give up the pick for him. They wanted him back and they set the price. Wake up dude. Twins got off easy and now have signed sh@# Happ and Shoemaker. Ugh!
Ah dude! isn’t that the way it works,,,,,the employer sets the price and the employee can either agree or not and move on? maybe you need to wake up dude!
Yep let’s sign a lefty when we are competing with a team that kills lefty’s.
That’s not Odorizzi’s fault. Last I remember, contracts are agreed upon by both parties. For the amount of revenue the sport gets, I have no problem with any player trying to maximize the few times in their life they can secure millions on an open market. In reality, roughly 8-10 years pass of team friendly control between the time a player begins pro ball and is eligible for free agency. Players should never be obligated to leave millions on the table.
They could if they had a conscience and some degree of guilt.
It wasn’t a negotiation. The Qualifying offer is a set price. Don’t offer it if then. Twins only paid 1/3rd of it.
That’s the way the system works dude!
If the players union wants that changed, they will have the chance pretty soon with the next negotiation!
well, at least, angels won’t be in bryant!
One can never fully understand just how much shoulder, hand and wrist injuries have hampered Bryant. Any one of those three is enough to compromise what was once a pretty sweet swing.
Best guess here is that Bryant starts the year as a Cub and they move on from him via a trade sometime before the July 31st trade deadline. There aren’t a lot of contenders actively looking for a 3B. However, Bryant’s versatility (Add 1B, OF or DH if it’s an AL team) should make him attractive to some team.
The biggest problem is, exactly how many MLB teams are actually trying to contend for a WS title? Teams just looking to make the playoffs aren’t gonna give up much of a prospect(s) for a two-month rental.
Maybe the Yankees? Their OF corps has looked like a M*A*S*H unit the last few years, only sans the laugh track.
The Yankees have zero payroll flexibility as they’re managing to the luxury tax, and any they have will go toward pitching.
Any trade partner for the Cubs would be a team not near the luxury tax and in contention for a postseason spot. That’ll unfold over the next few months.
I don’t believe Bryant will be traded because the Cubs will be in contention themselves.
Bryant has declined for the last 3 years. His best season in there was a 15% to 20% decline from 2015 to 2027 production. That’s the BEST season in 3 years. He was hurt the other 2. He is now either an injury risk or damaged goods. Buyer beware. In the very last part of his prime age wise and maybe already out of his prime due to the bad shoulder. He’s a declining player that at most is about 80% of his peak , might have a good year followed by an awful one, followed by a decent one. Issue is he wants to be paid like the 2015-2017 player and he’s well off that with injuries now being a recurring issue and 1st FA season is the wrong side of 30.
For quality players with a track record like Bryant, prime doesn’t end at age 30. So many “experts” are infatuated with up and coming, under age 25 stars, but look at the teams that win WS titles. They are a mix of young and veteran players, home grown and FA’s. There’s too much hyperbole out there. And what’s the futuristic reference to the year 2027? A typo I assume…
Based on their offseason moves of shedding players who have underperformed to their contracts and can be moved or were non-tendered, the voice of ownership appears to have taken a bigger role this year with the Cubs. Could be why Theo decided to leave when he did. I would bet ownership makes Bryant a significant offer before July and if he rejects it, then they may move him.
Which teams are going with a six man rotation?
Odorizzi already chomping at the bit to move back to Minneapolis. No surprise there if you are familiar w the city. On the contrary no one ever says “can’t wait to return to Philadelphia; I want to retire there”
MSP = Ever been there in January and February?
WINTER = October – March
Spring = April & May
Summer = June, July, August
Fall = September
Based on 45 years of experience….
Always thought Miley would do well after an opener who’s a hard throwing righty. Lorenzen fits that mold. Let him go once through lineup and then bring in Miley. Then Antone can have that last starter spot.
Great idea. Lorenzen could bat once before they remove him, then Miley wouldn’t need to hit for a few innings. For home games they could put the pitcher’s spot higher in the batting order for Lorenzen after he throws the top half of the first couple of innings.
I figured Miley would be the opener. If you can get 3 innings and 60 pitches out of him that’s a win. You can use Lorenzen, Antone or DeLeon as the bulk guy to get back on schedule. You squeeze all the juice out of Miley in his walk year and you can get good innings for either of the three bulk relievers you could use to push them toward being in the rotation.
That’s not a bad idea either running an opener in front of Miley but could he give you 4 good innings if necessary?
Gotta pull for a guy like Gose. Hope he can harness that control.
Bryant was hit in the face with a pitch and shoulder injury was more severe than they let on. If he is fully healed .280 35 hrs 100 runs scored and 100 rbis are headed his way
Hit in the face with a pitch and a shoulder injury …… this is why this guy can no longer hit pitches low and away …. hence batting average under .200 …. opposing pitchers know this ….. deadened baseball and weak Cub lineup = .210 batting average with 13 hr and 49 rbi. 92 total games played.
Bryant, Baez, and Rizzo all get 5 years 100 million? Might not be a bad deal for them, and easier to trade someone with those deals also if needed.
Being that Bryant is at 19.5 mil this year via arbitration, 20 mil a year for the next 5 wouldn’t be a raise, just an extension. I think given a good first half, Bryant will want at least $25 mil a year and then we’ll see what Cubs ownership does.
20 mil a year each for Baez and Rizzo is a little low as well. Something around $23 mil a year is likely what they’ll be looking to get in extension. Cubs can afford it with their current payroll level and looking at other contracts coming off the books next year and some young cheaper talent coming up to the ML club.
As a Tiger fan I have some issues with Anthony Gose from his days as a Tiger OF’er….but I will say I’m rooting for him to make it as a reliever. What a great story. The guy is trying. I’d love to see him make it back to the bigs as a pitcher.
Kris Bryant – 10 more years as a Cub?! Wow, I’m sure HE can envision that and it’s no wonder they haven’t started negotiations. Imagine the 39 -year-old Bryant? Yikes……
I can see the headline now:
BRANT TO RETIRE, BECOME COACH!”
details in the Athletic!
Wouldn’t it be unlikely for the Cubs to give Bryant (or their other pending free agents)
Big new money would raise
the AAV on their contracts…..
I think the. Cubs owe Jeffries a chance after last year on a one year nothing promised he did a good job him and Stroup can help this bull pen with the young guns.
They need to focus on Rizzo and Baez. I think KB leaves. Sure he wants to stay but Boras will demand 400mil. Bryant will probably get 200+ mil 220-230. Too bad the reports of him being offered 10/200 were fake reports.