The Chicago Cubs are looking to be creative when it comes to retooling this offseason. Despite the fact that they're launching their own cable network next year, rumors are the team's budget has little room for movement. That's why some analysts believe the way the Cubs are going to improve is by trading assets for new, different assets.

Willson Contreras is one of the team's biggest assets and talk has been swirling, for the last few weeks, about the likelihood he'll be moved. While there has been talk of him being dealt, there haven't been any specific players mentioned.

The latest talk still isn't mentioning a specific player in a trade, but there is a specific position.

Pitchers coming at a high price for Chicago Cubs

Patrick Mooney is among those who don't believe the Cubs are going to be players in the pitching free-agency market. Instead, he believes if the Cubs sign a pitcher, it will be a lower-tier player. That would indicate the Cubs are looking to shore up the back end of the rotation, according to Mooney. As MLB Trade Rumors points out, that isn't going to solve the team's rotation problems.

The site points out that only Kyle Hendricks is anywhere near the player he was in 2016 when Chicago won the World Series.

Jon Lester is aging quickly and his effectiveness faded in 2019. Jake Arrieta is gone, as is Mike Montgomery, who was the team's swingman in the rotation back then. Yu Darvish showed signs of being a pitcher the Cubs could lean on in 2020 but his statistics the last three years show analysts that he could go either way.

The site points out that the Chicago "Cubs of today will have to hit on below-the-radar type acquisitions, as they did in acquiring Arrieta and Hendricks in the first place."

The site believes there is one caveat if the team wants to acquire a very good pitcher without doling out a massive contract. That's trading Willson Contreras for that pitcher.

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Finding the right trading partner

Willson Contreras has a package that analysts have agreed would be attractive to suitors. He's got good speed for a catcher, hits for a decent average, and has good power. He's also young and has a very good arm. The one downside to Contreras is he is near the bottom of the league in pitch framing.

If a team values that talent, it does undercut his trade value. The other problem, as MLB Trade Rumors points out, is that the Chicago Cubs have to find a team willing to be a trade partner.

The site believes Contrera can indeed get something back and can get a good young arm in exchange. The issue is finding someone who is willing to let go of that good young arm for a catcher that is going to become more expensive in just a few years. That escalating cost is one of the reasons analysts believe the Chicago Cubs are looking to deal him.

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