Looking back, it is hard to believe how long it has been since I put pen to paper (or in this case words on a screen) and written something for the blog. Between getting married, the passing of my mother, the birth of my daughter and the pandemic, life these last three years has taken its toll on me. I have had a lot of time to self reflect and give myself some much needed self care. I am immensely grateful to Kin for keeping things running in my absence.
So what brought me back (hopefully for good)?
Yesterday the Chicago Cubs traded away the player who has got to be my favorite Cub of all time, Anthony Rizzo.
In my heart of hearts I had hoped that he would be the one player left standing when the dust settled. I knew that many players would be traded this year, but I had hoped that he would be the one who remained. In my little world, he was the heart and soul of this team. While he never wore the “captain’s C” he was the veteran leader. He was the one who players went to when they were struggling. He was the one who tried to keep things loose and fun no matter what was going on with the game on the field. He was “that guy”. So of course, he HAD to be the one to stay. Right?
As I said, that is what my heart told me.
However, in my head I knew that anyone and everyone likely would be traded, even Rizzo. We all knew that Kris Bryant would likely be traded as he would likely not be re-signed before reaching free agency. While he has not been traded yet (not as of this writing), he is almost sure to go. Javier Báez has been rumored to be sought by the New York Mets, Craig Kimbrel, Willson Contreras, all of have been rumored and linked to trades.
This is a hard pill to swallow, and to be completely honest I fought back tears last night when I heard Rizzo had been traded. I try to cheer myself up by saying he could be re-signed in the off-season, but I know that while possible, probably not likely even though that situation has happened in the past (like the Yankees did with Aroldis Chapman).
I guess I am just a bit sad seeing this team which brought us so much joy in 2016 being sold off piece by piece. Sad that this great group only won one World Series. Even so, from 2015-2020, this has been the best six years I have ever seen as a fan. The core was great for that time, and I will cherish what they gave us forever. I will always cheer for them from a distance, and wish them all nothing but success (unless they are playing the Cubs).
So to Rizzo, Bryant, Báez, Contreras (who’s hopefully sticking around since he still has a year of club control)…. from the bottom of my heart, thank you. Thank you for everything you have given this team, this city and the fans.
And thank you for 2016.
Forever a Cub.