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Raging Mega Boner Alert - Javy Baez's Best Plays Of 2019 (And Other Cubs Notes)

The baseball season has been away for less than two months and the withdrawal is really starting to kick in. This offseason for me and most Cubs' fans has been filled with an excessive amount of whining, bitching, pissing, moaning and complaining(1). And it's not too hard to understand why: the Cubs collapsed under the National League's largest payroll for the 2nd year in a row. Trader rumors are flying. Uncertainty is everywhere. And along the way we simply forget that Javy Baez is the most electrifying baseball player on planet earth right now.

I didn't say The Best. 

No he didn't. 

I said Most Electrifying.

So while things are fluid and we continue to search for answers this offseason, don't forget that El Mago really is a magical human being and we're so very lucky to watch him play for our team. 

Hopefully those highlights give you a little shot of life as we head into Thanksgiving week. Say it with me: 

I'm thankful for Javy Baez.

That felt good. 

So Did The News That Yu Darvish Is Now A Father:

I had no idea he and Seiko were expecting. Congratulations to the Darvish Family and good luck to the rest of the NL Central. I feel like if Yu taps into some kind of mental Happy Place on the mound, then everyone else is just completely fucked. Mix in dad strength and you got yourself some serious improvements. 

Speaking of additions + improvements, Wrigley Field is in store for some big action:

Imagine that. Veteran Alderman Tom Tunney is willing to go back on some of his extremely hard stances surrounding Wrigley Field in his first chance under reform Mayor Lori Lightfoot. Good time to stock up on those campaign dollars and donor relationships while the city's democratic machine is taking an absolute beating. Ladies and Gentlemen this is the sweet justice of Chicago local politics and while the circumstances aren't great, you better believe I'll take the extended hours and expanded liquor license every single time no matter how dirty it feels. Being on the right side of this is outstanding. 

Would I Just As Easily Accept This Trade? 

Knee jerk reaction: No.

Understandably, most of you find that answer to be extremely obvious. OF COURSE NOT KRIS BRYANT IS THE BEST. And to that I agree - I wrote a blog about him being a Cub for life just this week: 

Okay fine it was a baby watch blog but big point there was Kris is the best blah blah blah. 

But does that mean we wouldn't trade him? 

Absolutely not. Without getting into 10,000 words on payroll flexibility, the Cubs are kinda/really fucked in the short term. There's no increase to a stacked payroll and there's 4 open spots on the Cubs 40-man roster: 

So while I don't love KB/Heyward for Bruce/Segura + 3 prospects, I think we all need a reality check on our payroll situation and why that trade would get brought up in the 1st place. Let's walk thru it and to be very clear I am not advocating for this trade. I'm just taking you through all the facts behind it so you can form an opinion slightly more sophisticated than THATS FUCKING STUPID.

The Analysis: 

1. Assuming KB doesn't get extended, he goes to arbitration this offseason and gets $19m. Maybe $20m. It's his 2nd-to-last year of arbitration. That's a lot of money. Then in 2021 it's probably closer to 25m and maybe even 30m depending on how good he is this year. He's got a lot of rare circumstances. Let's just say it's $19m in 2020 and $26m in 2021.

2. Jason Heyward gets $21.5m on average in 2020-2023

3. KB + Heyward = $40.5m in 2020, $47m in 2021. 

4. I'm not thinking about Heyward in 2022 and 2023 for purposes of explaining this. By then, you'll have to address Rizzo, Baez, Schwarber and so many other things that it's ridiculous to talk payroll flexibility needs that far in advance. So let's stick to the next two years. 

5. The farm system sucks

6. Segura total WAR from 2016-2019 = 14.5 in 566 games and 2,510 plate appearances

7. KB total WAR from 2016-2019 = 19.0 in 555 games and 2,455 plate appearnaces

8. Payroll savings if this trade got done: 2020 = $13m, 2021 = $32.5M 

9. Things the Cubs could use the payroll on: signing Nick Castellabos to be the everyday rightfielder that is vacated by Jason Heyward. Extend Javy Baez. Extend Kyle Schwarber. Build a real bullpen. Find a leadoff hitter. 

10. Things the Cubs could do right now with current payroll structure: nothing. 

11. Final question - is KB + Jason Heyward that much better than Jay Bruce + Jean Segura to completely disregard all these other factors? What if you guaranteed that Castellabos would be a Cub? What if the Cubs signed Anthony Rendon instead and thus, in essence, traded KB for Rendon + 3 prospects without us having to watch Jason Heyward ground to second base any more? 

12. Final answer. This type of deal makes sense for all those reasons, but not enough sense to pull off because: (a) we don't know the prospects - that has a HUGE influence on this shit, (2) I hate Jay Bruce and most importantly (d) if we're going to trade Kris Bryant, I want a slam dunk. I don't want to have to reason through 12 different points to get to the conclusion that I don't like this. 

But let's agree it's worth the exercise to actually think about instead of just saying FUCK YOU PHILLIES. The unfortunate reality is the Cubs have a lot of work to do and that probably means hurting some of our feelings. Oh well. Better than losing the last 4 at home to St. Louis with the fucking season on the line because we were too                     (fill in blank) to address this shit last offseason. 

(1)The phrase "I don't want to hear any whining, bitching, pissing, moaning or complaining" was made popular by my father throughout the 1990's.