Cubs Acquire Catcher Martín Maldonado, Mike Montgomery Heading to KC, Contreras to IL

The Cubs have acquired catcher Martín Maldonado from the Kansas City Royals in exchange for Mike Montgomery. The trade news came across the wire after the Cubs dropped the series opener with the Reds at Wrigley Field. In addition, we got word that Willson Contreras will indeed hit the injured list with the foot injury that has kept him out the last couple games.

Maldonado is slashing just .227/.291/.366 with a 73 wRC+, but he consistently rates as one of the best defensive catchers in baseball. This season has been a struggle for Montgomery, who has posting a 5.67 ERA/6.21 FIP in 20 relief appearances (27 IP). That being said, he will never be forgotten in Chicago after being the man to throw the biggest pitch in the organization’s history.

Montgomery threw an 0-1 curveball to Cleveland’s Michael Martínez in the 10th inning of Game 7 of the World Series, coaxing a ground ball to Kris Bryant that gave the Cubs their first championship in 108 years.

We have gotten further clarity on the Willson Contreras situation, which helps make some sense of this trade. Obviously it’s easy to be a little unnerved by situation, but the fact that the Cubs may have been eyeing Maldonado prior to the injury provides at least some relief in that regard. Making sense of exactly how the Cubs envision their roster once Willson comes back, however, is something we’ll just have to monitor in the coming days.

To finish, I will simply say thank you to Mike Montgomery. Chicago will never forget you for being the man on the mound as the Cubs won the 2016 World Series. Best of luck to you and your family. Thank you.

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