Kris Bryant was a fixture of trade rumors all offseason, with the Nationals frequently mentioned as a potential suitor. Washington lost third baseman Anthony Rendon in free agency, making them a logical candidate to acquire the Cubs third baseman.
A deal obviously never came to fruition, and Bryant said he expects to be with the Cubs through the trade deadline. One reason a Cubs-Nationals deal specifically didn’t occur, according to MLB Network's Jon Heyman, is because Washington wouldn't match the Cubs' asking price in multiple trade scenarios.
Nats are giving top prospect Carter Kieboom a shot to replace a Rendon at 3B. No current talks on Bryant. Cubs wanted either Robles or some combo of RHP Rutledge, SS Garcia and Kieboom. Not an unreasonable ask but considering price (tax) and potential ultimately decided no.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) February 20, 2020
Heyman reported in December the Nationals "love" Bryant but noted their unwillingness to part with Victor Robles. Considering the Cubs' undefined center field position, Robles, one of the best defensive outfielders in baseball and an up-and-coming bat, made a ton of sense as the centerpiece to a potential Bryant trade.
Carter Kieboom, one of the top prospects in baseball, was another intriguing target for the Cubs. The 22-year-old shortstop can also play second and third base and could've replaced Bryant as the Cubs' starter at the hot corner. Washington's unwillingness to part with either player explains why talks between the two sides went "nowhere," even after Bryant's grievance case was settled last month.
Bryant's future with the team is still somewhat up-in-the-air in the long-term, but we know the Cubs won't trade him for less than fair value.Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of the Chicago Cubs easily on your device.