Chicago Cubs 2016 NL Central Championship Gear

Sometimes I come across a rumor from the far reaches of the ‘net that emanates from sources I don’t know. That is not to say it might not have a nugget of truth – I simply can’t vouch for it. But I figure you are all big boys and girls, and can decide for yourselves how much stock to place in the rumor based on its source and its internal credibility.

A Cubs blog called Hot Stove Cubbies has served up an extremely juicy rumor about the Cubs shopping Kosuke Fukudome. The writer claims that the source of the rumor is “a source close to the Cubs organization [who] has helped…break stories for the past 4 years…and I trust him/her very much.”

I don’t know how you can trust someone who won’t tell you their true gender, but whatever.

I kid, I kid. On to the rumor:

It is rumored that Fukudome is on the trading block and being “known to be available” by Jim Hendry with the emergence of Tyler Colvin. I have heard that the Astros, Dbacks, Giants, Mets, and White Sox all have some interest in Fukudome, but probably would expect the Cubs to pay a “good portion” of his contract.

My thoughts?

Unless one of those teams is prepared to take on all of Fukudome’s contract (two remaining years and $24 million), trading him seems like a risk the Cubs would not be willing to take. Tyler Colvin has had a swell Spring and all, but pinning the team’s hopes on him and Xavier Nady’s recovery is a stretch – even considering all of Fukudome’s foibles.

Further, the list of teams doesn’t make any sense. The Astros literally do not have a spot for Fukudome, and their payroll is maxed. The Diamondbacks have an outfield of Connor Jackson, Chris Young, and Justin Upton – in what universe is Fukudome an upgrade over any of those guys?

I suppose it’s possible that the teams might have interest in Fukudome as a fourth outfielder, assuming the Cubs eat a bunch of his contract, but in that case, why in the world would the Cubs do it unless they were receiving a premium player or two in return? And if that were the case, why would the other team send a premium player or two to the Cubs for a fourth outfielder?

As presented, this rumor just doesn’t make sense. Would the Cubs consider moving an outfielder given Colvin’s emergence? Sure. It’s more likely that the Cubs would move Xavier Nady once he shows he’s healthy, and once Colvin shows he can be an effective Major Leaguer – neither is a sure bet.

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