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emilio bonifacio cubsEmilio Bonifacio is a fun, useful, valuable player. He can play three dozen different positions, hits well enough in a utility role to have value to any team, doesn’t make a whole lot in the way of salary, and isn’t locked into an onerous long-term contract beyond this year. The only “problem,” such as it is one, is that the team he plays for right now is not competitive. So that value is, in effect, going to waste.

If only there were some way to transfer that value to a team that is in competition for a playoff spot. Like, a transfer that captures the value, and brings it back in a different form to the Cubs. Like a swap of some sorts. An exchange. A barter.

A TRADE! Hey, that’s the word.

And, what do you know, there is a strong expectation that, today, after being held out yesterday in anticipation of a trade, Bonifacio is likely to be dealt today. There is never a guarantee, obviously, but the Cubs are being pretty open and transparent on this one. Assuming a reasonable offer comes along by 3pm CT, they’ll make a trade (and they may have already received several reasonable offers, and are merely waiting things out to see if someone blinks or to choose the best one).

Rather than write 15 posts on the subject throughout the morning, I thought it worth just getting his story started early in one place, and then updating from there.

The first “update” below isn’t actually an “update,” since I’m publishing it in tandem with the original publication of this post. But it’s a useful organizational tool, so you’ll just have to suspend disbelief for a few minutes, and then after that, you can convince yourself it was actually an update.

UPDATE (8:01am CT): Mark Gonzales writes that scouting sources tell him the Giants or Royals remain the likely bets to acquire Bonifacio. There have been rumors inculpating and exculpating each team over the last 24 hours, but, given their needs – and Gonzales’s report – I don’t think you can rule them out. Interestingly, last night we had the okey-doke of Dan Uggla being released by the Giants, and then “oh wait no!” reports coming out that the Giants actually haven’t made that move quite yet. It feels like there could be a relationship there (if the Giants released Uggla, who has been terrible, they would lose leverage in trade negotiations involving a potential second baseman), but keep in mind: there are other infielders out there on the market.

For what it’s worth, it did seem like the Royals and Giants were the most frequently mentioned teams on Bonifacio last night. The Orioles, Mariners, and Reds have also been mentioned.

UPDATE 2 (10:40am CT): For now, Bonifacio remains a Cub, and is still with the team, preparing as usual for today’s game.

UPDATE 3 (10:41am CT): That said, Joel Sherman is still hearing that the Cubs expect to find a partner when it’s all said and done:

The Pirates are a new addition to that list. Not sure I quite see the strong need on their part, but I guess a bench upgrade is a bench upgrade.

UPDATE 4 (11:56am CT): Jayson Stark says there’s a lot of action on Bonifacio, with a number of teams in:

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