Kris Bryant received a false alarm this offseason.
The Chicago Cubs third baseman told reporters on Thursday that he received a "Welcome to the Mets" text, though after checking with Cubs president of baseball operations Jed Hoyer, he learned that no trade had taken place:
Bryant also told reporters he's willing to talk a long-term extension with the Cubs.
"I can kind of sound like a broken record," he said. "... I've always said I've been open and willing to hear whatever, Jed now, has to say and would take it with open arms and consider everything that is thrown my way."
The 29-year-old hit just .206 with four homers and 11 RBI in 34 games last season. Translated to a full 162-game season, he was on pace for just 19 dingers and 52 RBI, which would have represented just the second time in his six-year career he failed to reach 25 homers and 70 RBI.
With Bryant set to become a free agent after the 2021 season—and with the Cubs clearly in something of a rebuild after trading away Yu Darvish and letting Kyle Schwarber walk—trade rumors have circulated around Bryant all offseason.
Hoyer largely has downplayed any buzz, however. He told reporters in February:
"As long as you're playing for a big-market team like this, there's going to be rumors. There's no way around it, so you're going to have to deal with some of that. ... It's hard. I feel for those guys. No one wants to be working out in the offseason or going to play golf in the offseason and getting seven texts about a trade that was never discussed."
Granted, a long-term extension would end all of that for good. Until, or if, that happens, however, Bryant is going to be the subject of trade rumors.