The Chicago Cubs have formally announced their trade of catcher Geovany Soto to the Texas Rangers for pitching prospect Jake Brigham. The deal has the Cubs sending cash to the Rangers, which was both known and expected.
But an additional wrinkle revealed today has the Cubs also getting back either a PTBNL or cash considerations. This could mean a variety of things. It’s possible that both the PTBNL and the cash considerations coming to the Cubs are tied to how many games Geovany Soto starts for the Rangers over the rest of this season (i.e., the Rangers may have told the Cubs they were trading for a back-up for Mike Napoli (less value), but the Cubs might want protection if the Rangers are actually picking themselves up a starters, so they can re-allocate Napoli (more value)).
Alternatively/additionally, the Cubs could simply have built themselves a hedge that, if the PTBNL(s) they’re looking at doesn’t perform well over the next month or two, the Cubs can just get some cash back.
Either way, the PTBNL is bound not to be anyone of great consequence if there is a cash equivalent already on the table.