Cubs Trade Rumors: Kyle Hendricks 'Definitely Not Being Shopped' Ahead of Deadline

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVJuly 26, 2021

PHOENIX, ARIZONA - JULY 16: Kyle Hendricks #28 of the Chicago Cubs delivers a first inning pitch against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on July 16, 2021 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
Norm Hall/Getty Images

Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks is "definitely not being shopped," a source told Mark Feinsand of MLB.com, and barring a monster offer, the Cubs are "not trying to move him." 

Feinsand added that the Cubs "have a number of players up for grabs," however.

Hendricks, 31, is having something of a down year by his own high standards, going 12-4 in 20 starts with a 3.61 ERA, 1.26 WHIP and 87 strikeouts in 117.1 innings. Hardly bad numbers, though if the season finished today, his ERA would be the highest mark he's posted since 2015 and his WHIP would be the worst of his career. 

He has been on a solid run in recent starts, however:

Elias Sports Bureau @EliasSports

Kyle Hendricks is 10–0 w/ a 2.50 ERA over his last 13 starts. Only three <a href="https://twitter.com/Cubs?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Cubs</a> pitchers over the last 90 years won 11 straight decisions as a starting pitcher within one season: <br><br>Milt Pappas (11 in 1972)<br>Rick Sutcliffe (14 in 1984)<br>Jake Arrieta (11 in 2015) <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/CubTogether?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#CubTogether</a> | <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/MLB?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#MLB</a> <a href="https://t.co/3yhAGzvU6b">pic.twitter.com/3yhAGzvU6b</a>

Whether Hendricks stays or goes, changes are coming for the 49-51 Cubs, who appear to be gearing up for a firesale after drifting to fourth place in the NL Central. 

Anthony Rizzo, Kris Bryant and Javier Baez will all be free agents after the 2021 season. That makes them all potential candidates to be dealt. Closer Craig Kimbrel has a $16 million club option for next season, which means Chicago can demand very lucrative trade offers from teams in need of bullpen improvements.

The Cubs could always agree to extensions at some point for the veteran stars. But the possibility of losing them for nothing in free agency, especially Baez, would hurt. 

Hendricks, on the other hand, is under contract through 2023 (with a vesting option in 2024). There's little reason for the Cubs to shop him this summer.