The Chicago Cubs are rebuilding for a better future, and trading Marlon Byrd is the next step in that process!
Carlos Zambrano, Kosuke Fukudome and Aramis Ramirez are already gone and Byrd is sure to follow at the midsummer trade deadline.
So, what potential destinations loom for the Cubs’ center fielder?
Byrd is not perfect but the Nationals desperately need a capable player in center field. Jayson Werth needs to be in left where he is superb defensively and can focus more on hitting well in the lineup.
If the Nationals trade for Byrd, Bryce Harper will move into right by the summer and incumbent left fielder Michael Morse will replace current first baseman Adam LaRoche after he is also traded.
Since Byrd will not command a ton of trade value, this deal could get done without a hitch if the Nationals are in the playoff hunt.
The Rays currently have Ben Zobrist manning center field.
But the dependable Zobrist can play anywhere on the baseball diamond and the Rays could have serious depth issues at both second base and shortstop late in the season.
Byrd could be the perfect stopgap measure for them if Tampa Bay is in the playoff hunt.
The Cardinals are trying Jon Jay out in center field.
But if that does not work out, Byrd could be a great way to upgrade their hitting from the position in the summer.
St. Louis will give him a look, particularly if they are in playoff contention.