Cubs' Theo Epstein Clears Air On Kris Bryant's Trade Availability

Philadelphia Phillies

Philadelphia Phillies

Cubs fans are in a frenzy over a report that Kris Bryant could possibly be traded.

The earliest he can become a free agent is in 2022.

"We've never operated with untouchables", Epstein said, specifically referring to Bryant and Anthony Rizzo.

ESPN.com's Buster Olney reported Friday, citing sources, that Chicago is open to trade discussions centering around just about everyone on its roster, including Bryant.

Epstein and general manager Jed Hoyer emphasized throughout the week the Cubs' intentions of going all in on 2019 to get more out of a core of hitters that faded in particular in the second half this season.

Bryant had an injury-plagued 2018 season in which he missed 60 games and landed on the disabled list twice with shoulder injuries.

"I answered a general question about whether we have untouchables", the Cubs president said. "Given what we're trying to accomplish, it would be virtually impossible to envision a deal that would make sense to move them".

"Like most teams, we will listen to anything", Epstein told 670 The Score.

"I just don't believe in operating with 'untouchables, ' because why limit yourself in any way".

"There are players who are so important to us on the field and in the clubhouse that you'd be going backwards through whatever lens - narrow view, long view - by moving those guys", Epstein said. Bryant was the National League Rookie of the Year in 2015 and the NL MVP in 2016. He is under team control through 2021. "It sends the wrong message".