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Chicago Cubs

NL Central

Bruce Levine of 670 The Score reports that the Cubs have had trade talks with the Phillies in regards to Kris Bryant. (Source: Bruce Levine on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Trading Bryant would be a surprising move by the Cubs but the team is known to be trying to shed salary. The Phillies are also known to be pursing Anthony Rendon in free agency as they seek a third baseman.

Category: Rumors

Jharel Cotton was traded from the Athletics to the Cubs Saturday in exchange for cash considerations. (Source: Andrew Baggarly on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Cotton hasn’t appeared in the majors since 2017 due to Tommy John surgery. He owns a career 4.95 ERA over 29 starts. Cotton will add pitching depth and could be used a reliever down the road. He will have fantasy value if he is able to somehow crack the rotation, but as of now he is late-round flyer in dynasty leagues.

Category: Transactions

Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times writes that the Cubs have begun extension talks with infielder Javier Baez. (Source: Chicago Sun-Times)

Fantasy Impact: The 26-year-old Baez has been the Cubs' best player the past two seasons. In 2019 he hit .281 with 29 homers, 11 steals, and an .847 OPS. He's currently under team control for two more years.

Category: Rumors

Jeff Passan of ESPN reports teams in search of catching help are getting the sense that Willson Contreras could become available this off-season. (Source: Jeff Passan on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: The Cubs need to get creative this winter. There are plenty of catchers available in free agency, which could make Contreras more expendable in the eyes of the Cubs. The 27-year-old is under team control through 2022.

Category: Rumors

The Cubs have picked up Jose Quintana's $10.5 million option for 2020. (Source: Jon Heyman on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Quintana had a disastrous season, pitching to a 4.68 ERA and 1.39 WHIP. Nevertheless, the Cubs will stick with him for at least another year, and it's worth noting that his FIP was merely 3.80, largely in line with his career mark. Quintana will remain relevant in NL-only leagues, but should be largely out of mixed-league consideration by now.

Category: Transactions

Yu Darvish is not opting out of his contract with the Cubs. (Source: Jon Heyman on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Darvish would've been leaving four years and $81 million on the table. He had a dominant second half (2.76 ERA) but likely wouldn't have found that type of money on the open market. The 33-year-old finished the year with a whopping 229 strikeouts in 178 2/3 innings.

Category: Transactions

Derek Holland (2-5) took the loss Sunday against the Cardinals, allowing seven earned runs on five hits and four walks across two innings.

Fantasy Impact: This was a rough outing for Holland, who was making his first start since May. He finishes 2019 with a 6.08 ERA and 1.51 WHIP in 84.1 innings. He could enter 2020 as a low-end starter or a long-relief bullpen member.

Category: Game Recaps

Ian Happ went 3-for-5 with two home runs and four RBI in Saturday's win over the Cardinals.

Fantasy Impact: Happ spent the majority of the season in Triple-A, where he wasn't very impressive. Since being recalled, however, he's slashed .268/.333/.572 with 11 homers in 57 games.

Category: Game Recaps

Kyle Schwarber went 2-for-5 with a solo home run and two runs scored in Saturday's win over the Cardinals.

Fantasy Impact: Schwarber is putting the cap on the best season of his career, posting 38 homers and 92 RBI with one game left to play. He's also raised his batting average to the .250 mark.

Category: Game Recaps

Victor Caratini went 2-for-5 with a solo home run in Saturday's win over the Cardinals.

Fantasy Impact: Caratini went deep off Adam Wainwright in the fifth, giving him a career high 11 homers on the season. Caratini has talent, but Anthony Rizzo and Willson Contreras block his path to playing time in Chicago.

Category: Game Recaps

Brandon Kintzler hit a batter but otherwise turned in a clean inning to pick up the save Saturday against the Cardinals.

Fantasy Impact: Craig Kimbrel has not appeared since September 21 when he allowed consecutive homers, so Kintzler was afforded the save opportunity on Saturday night. He has posted a 2.68 ERA and 1.04 WHIP this season.

Category: Game Recaps

Cole Hamels allowed two hits while striking out eight over four scoreless innings in a no-decision against the Cardinals on Saturday.

Fantasy Impact: Hamels was scratched from his last start with a shoulder injury, but ended 2019 on a high note in his final outing. Over his last nine starts, Hamels posted a 6.39 ERA after posting a 2.98 ERA over the first three months of the season. He will enter the offseason as a free agent for the first time in his career.

Category: Game Recaps

Robel Garcia went 1-for-2 with a three-run home run and a walk in Friday's win over the Cardinals.

Fantasy Impact: Garcia pinch hit in the sixth, and stayed in the game for another at-bat, in which he blasted a three-run homer. Garcia is slashing .200/.269/.500 with five homers and 11 RBI in 70 at-bats.

Category: Game Recaps

Alec Mills allowed one run on five hits and two walks while striking out nine over five innings in a no-decision against the Cardinals.

Fantasy Impact: Only a Matt Carpenter solo homer hurt Mills's performance Friday. Mills will finish the year with a 2.75 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, and 42:11 K:BB in 36 innings in four starts (nine appearances).

Category: Game Recaps

Anthony Rizzo (ankle) is absent from the Cubs' lineup on Friday.

Fantasy Impact: Rizzo has sat out two straight games since the Cubs were eliminated from the playoffs and it's unclear if he'll play again this year. The slugging first baseman has hit .293 with 27 homers and a .925 OPS this season.

Category: Injury Updates

Jon Lester allowed two runs on eight hits with no walks and four strikeouts across six innings in a no-decision against the Pirates on Wednesday.

Fantasy Impact: Lester did a decent job keeping the Pirates off balance and keeping the Cubs in the game. Overall in 2019, Lester finishes with 13-10 with a 4.46 ERA, 1.50 WHIP, and 165 strikeouts in 171.2 innings.

Category: Game Recaps

Nico Hoerner went 2-for-4 with a double and two RBI in Tuesday's loss to the Pirates.

Fantasy Impact: The Cubs have seen their playoff chances disappear with a seven-game losing streak, but Hoerner has been a silver lining. He's slashing .295/.328/.492 in 15 games at the major league level in 2019.

Category: Game Recaps

Kyle Hendricks (11-10) allowed six runs (five earned) over six innings, taking the loss against the Pirates on Tuesday. He struck out five.

Fantasy Impact: Hendricks was cruising through six, but ran into trouble in the seventh, allowing five straight hits to start the inning. Hendricks lines up to make one more regular season start Sunday against the Cardinals.

Category: Game Recaps

Nicholas Castellanos went 2-for-4 with a solo home run and an additional run scored in Sunday's loss to the Cardinals.

Fantasy Impact: Castellanos now has 16 homers in a Cubs' uniform, and 27 on the season. He's batting a robust .310 in September, and has been a completely different player since changing teams.

Category: Game Recaps

Tony Kemp went 1-for-1 with a two-run home run in Saturday's loss to the Cardinals.

Fantasy Impact: Kemp's home run gave the Cubs a brief lead in the seventh inning. Since joining the team, Kemp is batting .172, and his overall numbers aren't impressive.

Category: Game Recaps

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