3 San Diego Padres trade rumors to squelch before they gain any traction

St. Louis Cardinals first baseman Paul Goldschmidt
St. Louis Cardinals first baseman Paul Goldschmidt / Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
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Chicago Cubs center fielder Cody Bellinger
Chicago Cubs center fielder Cody Bellinger / David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

San Diego Padres trade rumor to squash: Cody Bellinger

Much like Stroman, it feels like the Cubs could find a way to trade away Bellinger and get a nice return for the former National League MVP. Chicago signed the 27-year-old Bellinger to a "prove it" one-year, $17.5 million deal this offseason and he has certainly done that, slashing .272/.341/.497 in 167 plate appearances.

Bellinger is back off the injured list after suffering a knee contusion and is expected to play first base as well as make some appearances in the outfield moving forward for the Cubs. Bellinger has played first base before coming to Chicago, so the move isn't surprising. However, with Chicago putting Bellinger back in the infield, it's also a way for the Cubs to show other teams that he could be an answer at the trade deadline at that position as well, adding to his worth.

There are so many tantalizing thoughts about Bellinger being added to the Padres and helping San Diego claw back into the NL West race against his former team in Los Angeles. Can you imagine the storylines there would be if that were to happen?

It sounds like a Hollywood script, but this isn't a movie. If (and it's a big if) the Cubs do actually trade Bellinger (and there's no guarantee they will with a mutual option in place for 2024 for another $17.5 million), there are better fits for him in other locations (including Houston, where the Astros are expected to pay handsomely for an answer to their first base needs) than San Diego.