With trade speculation running rampant, Kris Bryant expressed his loyalty to the Chicago Cubs during the 2021 MLB All-Star Game.
A successful start to the season for the Chicago Cubs was short-lived, as an 11-game losing streak caused the team to tumble down the NL Central standings. As a result of that skid, the Cubs are reportedly becoming sellers at the trade deadline later this month, and one player who could be on the move is third baseman and impending free agent Kris Bryant.
During the 2021 MLB All-Star Game on Tuesday, Bryant was mic’d up while playing in left field for the National League team. While speaking with Joe Buck and John Smoltz, Bryant said he is not paying attention to the trade speculation, as his focus is on playing for the Cubs … until he’s not. Even so, he said he is proud to wear the Cubs logo on his uniform and to play for the city of Chicago.
Kris Bryant proud to play for the Cubs amid trade speculation
Cubs fans watching the All-Star Game no doubt shed a tear when listening to those comments from Bryant.
The Cubs exceeded plenty of expectations heading into the start of the campaign, which came as a surprise considering the lack of money they spent in the offseason and the exodus of talent (i.e. Yu Darvish, Jon Lester). But the Cubs fell well out of first place leading up to the All-Star break, and reports indicated that the organization planned to sell at the deadline, with Bryant and closer Craig Kimbrel being deemed the most likely to be moved.
Bryant is scheduled to be a free agent at the end of this season, which makes sense as to why the Cubs would consider trading him to another team. The thing is, Bryant has been the subject of trade talks for years, but nothing had ever come to fruition. A deal may come, especially considering teams in postseason contention are looking to add premium talent to put them over the edge in time for the fall.
This season, Bryant is slashing .271/.353/.502 while recording 16 home runs, 46 RBI, 50 runs scored and 79 RBI through 81 games played. Interestingly enough, Bryant has played five different positions this year, which included third base, first base and all outfield slots.
The remaining weeks of July will be interesting in the Windy City, as fans await to see if the team officially opts to send talent elsewhere in the league. Regardless of what happens, Bryant let the world know that his focus is on playing for the Cubs.