It has been a turbulent season for the Chicago Cubs.
After starting the year hot, the team collapsed, and at the trade deadline, countless star players were dealt to contending teams.
The Cubs have a very different look today compared to that of a week ago.
Many fans are upset with Chicago’s higher-ups and feel that the deadline sell was a huge mistake.
But truthfully, it was the best possible outcome.
Summarizing The Cubs’ Year
Entering the year, the organization had a massive dilemma on its hands, as much of the team’s core was set to hit free agency after the 2021 season.
President Jed Hoyer had a big decision to make regarding the future.
Essentially, Hoyer had to figure out whether it was worth keeping the core intact for one last title run in 2021, or whether it made more sense to trade the core away and get back an excess of young talent for the future.
Ultimately, Hoyer and the Cubs decided to enter the 2021 season with the core intact.
And for a little while, it looked like the team was going to hang around in the playoff picture.
The Cubs were 42-33 on June 24.
Then an 11-game losing streak ensued.
And as odd as it sounds, that losing steak was arguably the best thing that could have happened to Chicago.
The skid solidified the Cubs as sellers, and for anybody with an eye on the future, that was a big relief.
Let’s get into the rationale.
Why The Fire Sale Was The Right Call
Anthony Rizzo, Kris Bryant, Javier Baez, and Craig Kimbrel were the biggest names on the move for the Cubs.
As far as the identity of the club goes, those were arguably Chicago’s four most important players.
It’s understandable that fans are upset.
But the team essentially had two options:
- Option A: risk losing those players for nothing in free agency
- Option B: flip those players into as much value as possible at the deadline
If the Cubs hadn’t gone on that aforementioned 11-game losing streak, they probably would have kept the core intact for a playoff run.
And if that playoff run resulted in anything short of a World Series title, then keeping the core around would have been a massive mistake, because the organization would be looking at “Option A” with no World Series title to show for it.
The Cubs did the right thing, and as a result, they have an incredibly bright future ahead.
Further, there seems to be a belief that the Cubs are going to have a chance at re-signing some of the players they just traded away.
#Cubs' David Ross on Anthony Rizzo, Javier Baez and Kris Bryant: "There's definitely opportunity to get some of those guys back."
— 670 The Score (@670TheScore) August 3, 2021
Looking At The Prospect Haul
The Cubs received a full list of exciting prospects/players at the deadline.
In alphabetical order, they are: Kevin Alcantara, Bryce Ball, Alexander Canario, Pete Crow-Armstrong, Greg Deichmann, Anderson Espinoza, Codi Heuer, Bailey Horn, Caleb Killian and Nick Madrigal.
There is a ton of superstar potential in there.
The White Sox paid a massive price for Craig Kimbrel: second baseman Nick Madrigal and reliever Codi Heuer, sources tell ESPN.
When I said at the top of the show that Cubs had the chance to remake themselves for the next five years in the next two hours, this is what I meant.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) July 30, 2021
Crow-Armstrong and Madrigal are arguably the two biggest names to know.
Crow-Armstrong has the upside to eventually develop into an elite hitter at the MLB level.
Right now, he is batting .417 with a 1.063 OPS over 32 plate appearances at the Single-A level.
As for Madrigal, he’s hardly a prospect anymore, because he’s producing at the big-league level instead.
Over 83 MLB games, the youngster is batting .317 with a .764 OPS.
He is going to miss the rest of the 2021 season due to a hamstring injury, but this guy is going to become a household name for Cubs fans very, very soon.NEXT: 3 Players For Cubs Fans To Be Excited About After Fire Sale