The Cubs are back to playing .500 ball after a 7-3 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays on Wednesday to put their record at 42-42. Media outlets have said that they think the Cubs will back to playing championship-caliber ball. They say the pitching staff will get back into rhythm. The problem is that these statements have been said since the beginning of May.

The Rays didn't just bring an interesting headline with Joe Maddon, the current Cubs manager who managed the Rays for nine seasons before coming to Chicago. The Rays also brought Chris Archer, a former Cubs prospect that was dealt for Matt Garza back in 2010. The Cubs have had him on their radar, but that was also a statement said in May.

Will the Cubs pull the plug?

If Archer costs a player like Eloy Jimenez, then the answer is no. Ian Happ was once rumored as a prospect the Cubs would deal, but he is contributing in many ways for the Cubs right now. Happ is like a mini-Ben Zobrist this season, so he might also be untouchable.

Who would be left? Mark Zagunis played well in his limited playing time. The Cubs have two pitchers in their top five. Jeimer Candelario has played in the MLB on multiple occasions, but has not really impressed. Long story short, Jimenez or Happ would be the key to Archer because of how cost-effective he is and how many years are left on his deal. With the Rays in competition for the wild card spot, it seems unlikely that Archer will come to Chicago.

Addison Russell could be a chip

If Jimenez and Happ are off the table, could Russell be used as trade bait? Russell is in his third season with the Cubs.

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He was the highlight of the trade package in 2014 that brought Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel to Oakland. He was a key contributor for last season's World Series team, with 95 runs batted in last season. However, Russell has been batting .235 this season. He dealt with off the field problems with his now ex-wife claiming domestic violence. He is also due arbitration at the end of 2018.

He is just 23-years-old, and has drawn comparisons to Barry Larkin. However, the Cubs brass could still entertain the thought. Javy Baez can play shortstop, Happ can play second base, and Jason Heyward could take a spot in the outfield. Albert Almora could continue to play center field, and If Kyle Schwarber comes back after the break, he and Ben Zobrist could share left field.

Regardless, the Cubs need to make a move to bolster their rotation. If the Cubs feel that they have enough to cover the infield for the future, then Russell could be someone that nabs them Archer due to his high asking price. As unlikely as it is, it does make sense.