In the daily soap opera that has become the Nolan Arenado trade speculations, there is one rumor that I am struggling to wrap my head around.
In an article on Wednesday, our own Kevin Henry wrote on the early talks of a Colorado Rockies and Chicago Cubs potential swap of superstars Nolan Arenado and Kris Bryant. The talks are still in their extreme infancy but, for some reason, the trade makes absolutely zero sense if you are the Rockies, assuming that this would be a one-for-one trade.
The biggest rationale for trading away Arenado has always been that the Rockies fear that he will opt out of his contract following the 2021 season.
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This is understandable as they don’t want to see him walk and end up empty-handed.
However, if that is the case, why would they trade for Bryant, who will see his contract also expire after the 2021 season? Keep in mind, Scott Boras is Bryant’s agent, so good luck re-signing him when his contract is over.
The Rockies would also likely have to send over some cash to offset the difference the two players make in payroll. Bryant will make $18.6 million this season and has another year of arbitration set for 2021. Arenado is owed a minimum of $70 million the next two seasons before he can opt out.
Most importantly, there is no question as to which of the players is the most superior. When comparing Arenado’s seven seasons in the Majors to Bryant’s five, from power to average to productivity to defense, hands down Arenado is the better of the third basemen … and it’s not even close. Check out the comparisons here.
So why would the Rockies even entertain the idea of downgrading from Arenado to Bryant if in two years they are going end up in the exact same place?
Jeff Bridich and Nolan Arenado are fighting over bruised egos. It doesn’t make sense to make a trade over this reason and this particular trade doesn’t make sense either.