Willson Contreras Writes About His Time with the Cubs, and About His Decision to Join the Cardinals

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Willson Contreras Writes About His Time with the Cubs, and About His Decision to Join the Cardinals

Chicago Cubs

Oh boy. I should have known this kind of thing was coming. But given the many fake-out farewells over the past year, and then the immediacy of dreading seeing him in a Cardinals uniform, I kinda forgot that there was probably a true “Farewell” coming from Willson Contreras.

I guess it’s time to grab a hanky and read Contreras’s article just released at The Players’ Tribune:

The article is a thorough and touching note of affection for his time with the Cubs, and for his time ahead with the Cardinals. Contreras knows he is following Yadi Molina, which excites him, even if he knows replacing Molina is, in his words, impossible. I’m sure that is exciting for him, and for as much as Cubs fans have a complicated relationship with the memory of Yadi Molina, I’m happy that Contreras sees it as special.

But that stuff will probably interest you less than what Contreras had to say about the Cubs, and then about the process of joining his new team. Here’s what Contreras had to say about the Cubs:

All I’ve known in baseball since I was a teenager has been the Chicago Cubs.

The Cubs’ baseball academy in Venezuela was a five-minute drive from my house in Puerto Cabello. I was only 16 when I signed with Chicago. Then, within a year, I’m on a plane to the U.S. I was barely old enough to drive a car. I didn’t know any English. All I knew was baseball. And the Cubs.

That was my world.

And I couldn’t be more grateful that that’s how things went for me, either. I’ve been so lucky to have been a part of the Cubs family for the past 13 years. It’s been an incredible ride! I mean, winning a World Series right off the bat? In my rookie season? It doesn’t get much better. And it’s an experience I’ll never forget as long as I live.

But nothing lasts forever, right?

I know I’ve given my all to the Cubs over the years. I did everything I could to help make the team better. I played through injuries. Left it all out there on the field. I’m proud of what I’ve contributed.

So I have no regrets about turning the page. I worked extremely hard for many years to get to this place, to be in this position. It’s something I’ve dreamed about — building a career that would allow me to get to where I am right now. And I’m moving on knowing I did all I could for my team.

That all sounds right to me. Contreras earned this opportunity, and the opportunity to be EXCITED about choosing his future. I may not like having to watch him in a Cardinals uniform, but he provided me a heckuva lot of joy over the past several years. He did do all he could for the team.

You can and should read his piece for the process of choosing the Cardinals, and where things go from here for him. If nothing else, it’ll provide a more complete picture on how it is that Contreras wound up with our most hated rival. In some ways, it softens things. In other ways, it makes me a little excited for him to still be part of the rivalry, even on the other side. Maybe I can be OK cheering against him, actually, and I think maybe that’s exactly how he’d want it. Dude just really wants the Cardinals to win now. I don’t want that. So here we are.

All love to Willson Contreras on his future (generally speaking), and for his time with the Cubs. It’s been a great ride.

Ah, wait. There’s a video, too:

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.