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There are so many Chicago Cubs rumors to report in this post that you are hereby forewarned about the semi-stream of consciousness that will follow.

ESPNChicago’s Bruce Levine recently held a chat, which produced a whole lot of Chicago Cubs rumor nuggety goodness. Here’s the transcript of the chat, and here is a selection of the highlights from CCO. On to the rumors:

The Cubs are still very interested in swapping Milton Bradley with Pat Burrell, but thereafter, hope to spin Burrell off to another team. Such a move would seem designed to minimize the cost associated with dumping Bradley, and would allow the Cubs to go after the guy they want in the outfield. Also possible, according to me: the Cubs will fill the outfield internally, so they can use the saved money to go after a second baseman like Chone Figgins.

Speaking of second base, Levine suggested the Cubs could go after Orlando Hudson (which they should have done last year), or could go after Orlando Cabrera to play short, and move Ryan Theriot to second. The Cubs love people named Orlando, apparently.

The Cubs are unsure of what to do with outfielder Reed Johnson. They want him back, but don’t want his back back. Apparently Reed has a degenerative back condition that will continue to be an issue. Mike Cameron may be the backup plan in the outfield as a part-timer or starter.

Speaking of center field, the Cubs have discussed juicing douche Rick Ankiel, who was utterly terrible this year. He does play excellent defense – though can you imagine if his dramatic wall faceplant from earlier this year had occurred at Wrigley? Additionally, the Cubs are unlikely to pursue a deal for center fielder Vernon Wells unless the Blue Jays eat far more than half of his remaining deal.

Finally, the Cubs are expected to approach Derrek Lee and Ted Lilly about contract extensions this year, as both are free agents after 2010. Derrek Lee was a stud this year and all, but he isn’t getting any younger. Can you imagine if the Cubs somehow went after Adrian Gonzalez – who is on the block – and found somewhere to stash him for this year, allowing him to take over as the full time first baseman in 2011? That… well, that would be swell. Too swell, in fact. So I’ll stop dreaming.

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