Giancarlo Stanton is the hottest name in baseball so far this offseason, as the Miami Marlins are shopping him in trade talks. He is the best pure slugger in baseball and is one of the top all-around hitters in the game as well. Unfortunately, he is playing on a massive contract and the Marlins’ asking price is “shockingly high” at this point in time.
Quite a few teams have already been in contact with the Marlins about a potential Stanton trade. Among those teams are the St. Louis Cardinals, San Francisco Giants, Los Angeles Dodgers, and Boston Red Sox. There will be plenty more to add to the list over the next few weeks.
Theo Epstein and the Chicago Cubs are in an offseason that is expected to shake up the major league roster. Epstein has already said that he is willing to trade big league talent to improve the roster.
That being said, should Epstein and the Cubs jump into the Stanton trade discussions this offseason?
At this point in time, it is unclear exactly what the Marlins are asking for if they do trade Stanton. Chicago has decimated their farm system in recent years with big trades for Aroldis Chapman and Jose Quintana. They may not have enough to entice the Marlins to make a deal, but Epstein should certainly give it a shot.
Chicago may not have a ton of prospects, but they do have very talented young MLB players. Pieces like Kyle Schwarber, Javier Baez, and Addison Russell could be in play in trade discussions.
Obviously, the Cubs are prioritizing pitching this offseason. That could take them out of the Stanton sweepstakes before they even get involved, but it shouldn’t.
Last season with the Marlins, Stanton knocked 59 home runs out of the park and drove in 132 RBI’s. He did all of that heavy lifting while also recording a .281 batting average. Those numbers are phenomenal, to say the least.
Adding that to a lineup that will still feature Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo, and Willson Contreras and the Cubs would immediately jump to the top of most offensive statistics.
At 28 years of age, Stanton still has 10 years left on his mega-contract. There are potential outs for him before that 10-year period is up, but a contract that will pay him $29 million or more every season from now until the end of the deal is not likely to be messed with.
How would the Cubs be able to swing a trade for Stanton? They would likely have to include two of their already proven players. Perhaps Schwarber and Russell could be the centerpieces of a deal that brings Stanton to Chicago. Epstein could also offer solid prospects in Alex Lange, Jose Albertos, and potentially Dillon Maples.
While the Cubs certainly aren’t a front-runner to acquire Stanton, they could make an intriguing offer.
Should the Cubs consider trading two of their current stars and one or two of their top prospects in a deal that acquires Stanton? Absolutely. He is the type of player that can completely change the future for a franchise.
Even though the Cubs could make an aggressive offer, it doesn’t seem likely that Epstein will. If he is indeed going after quality starting pitching on the trade market, it won’t be cheap.
If, however, the Cubs decide to go all-in, acquiring Stanton would be the right move to make. They could go out and re-sign Jake Arrieta, even though his contract is expected to be expensive, and sign Alex Cobb to be their No. 5 starter. That may be a dream scenario for the Cubs, but they could conceivably make it work.
Chicago could simply pass on Stanton in hopes of landing another superstar next offseason. Bryce Harper is expected to hit the free agency market and he has been linked quite often to the Cubs.
No matter what the Cubs end up doing this offseason, they are going to be aggressive. More than likely, at least one of their young bats will be on his way out of town. Epstein has made it clear that he is open to moving some of his talent, and there are quite a few options for the Cubs to look at.
Stanton certainly would make the Cubs a much more intriguing team, but he might not be the wisest investment. Despite that, Epstein should make a call and see what it would take to acquire Stanton from the Marlins.
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