Everyone knows what’s going on. What this year was always likely to be and what it has now become. That includes the players, themselves, who know they are on a team heading toward another sell-off.
But, even after going through it last year, that doesn’t mean so many of those same emotions aren’t going to bubble up again.
Last year, it was so hard to see all of Javy Báez, Anthony Rizzo, and Kris Bryant sent out after so many years as a core part of the Cubs fan experience. This year, maybe there’s only one “core” guy being sent out, but I’m not sure it’s going to be any less emotional.
Here’s Willson Contreras, after last night’s win, talking about how things have been the last few days. It is rough, rough, rough. You can see Contreras just trying to hold it together:
“I wish this day never came,” Contreras said, per the Sun-Times. “But it’s about business. I understand that, I respect that. And I love my team. I love my teammates most, and I don’t want to get too attached with them because you never know what’s going to happen next week, or this week even in San Francisco. It’s been a tough couple of days for me ….
“I’m trying just to appreciate everything that Wrigley Field is, and thinking about all the memories that I have here since 2016, [in the organization] from 2009 till now. It’s probably — I don’t know — but probably my last home stand with the fans this year. It’s tough for me. It’s really tough.”
That is perhaps the most plain I’ve seen Willson Contreras put it throughout this rumor cycle, knowing that this is probably his last set of games at Wrigley Field. The fans showed him love last night, and they’ll do it again today if given the opportunity.
We don’t know precisely what’s going to happen this Trade Deadline, or what will happen after the season when Contreras reaches free agency. I, too, will just try to take in what there is to take for the next week, and then I’ll react how I react. Judging by my reaction to watching Willson’s comments in that video, I’ll probably react with a great deal of sadness.