'Tis the Season: Tigers and Blue Jays Trying to Leverage Kris Bryant's Knee Issue Against the Cubs

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‘Tis the Season: Tigers and Blue Jays Trying to Leverage Kris Bryant’s Knee Issue Against the Cubs

Chicago Cubs

If a team is in the market for a particular type of player, and then suffers an injury on that side of the ball just days before the Trade Deadline – now the only Trade Deadline – you can be sure that other teams will turn the screws as tightly as they can.

It’s going to happen to the Brewers, who’ve lost two starting pitchers to oblique injuries in the past week, and it could happen to the Cubs if they suffered an injury in the bullpen or on the positional side.

That said, this really comes off as a little desperate:

To be sure, if the Cubs *did* lose Bryant for a significant period of time, they would be all the more interested in adding to their depth. But the difference in urgency would not necessarily push them into a totally different stratosphere of prospect, especially when you consider the fact that their playoff chances would necessarily be damped by the loss of Bryant. Nick Castellanos? Eric Sogard? Guys you want on the roster, sure. “Replacements” for a long-term Bryant injury? Lulz. No.

That is to say, even if Bryant were seriously injured, the impetus to pay more for these guys wouldn’t necessarily be there.

Most importantly, for what we know right now, Bryant is *not* seriously injured. As he explained it after yesterday’s departure, he had some soreness from a while ago, and tweaked his knee hitting in the cage before the game (a game in which he homered). Treatment after the game made a big difference. He expects to play tomorrow.

Should Bryant’s knee be on the Cubs’ radar as they search for additional bench/lineup options? Of course. But is that really all that different now than it was two or three days ago? Probably not. Heck, the Cubs may already have been fully aware of some lingering soreness in Bryant’s knee, and this was all factored in.

Which would mean rumors like the one from Morosi are entirely about trade partners trying to leverage a (probably non-) injury into a greater sense of urgency. I don’t think it would work in this case, because if Bryant isn’t hurt, then no urgent push. If Bryant is only barely hurt, Cubs can threaten to wait it out. If Bryant is seriously hurt, Cubs might be even less inclined to spend major prospect capital.

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Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.