Cubs send another pitcher South, trade closer Craig Kimbrel to White Sox

Cubs will reportedly receive second baseman Nick Madrigal and right-hander Codi Heuer in the deal.

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The Cubs have traded All-Star closer Craig Kimbrel to the White Sox. They’ll receive second baseman Nick Madrigal and right-hander Codi Heuer in the deal

Kimbrel has had an amazing turnaround since arriving in Chicago in 2019 and after a miserable end to the 2019 season and start to 2020, MLB’s active saves leader has found new life.

Kimbrel is having one of the better seasons of his career in 2021, with a 0.49 ERA in 39 appearances for the Cubs this season with 23 saves, earning his first All-Star nod since 2019 in the process.

Kimbrel becomes the third member of the Cubs’ bullpen traded this week with left-hander Andrew Chafin going to the Oakland A’s and right-hander Ryan Tepera also going to the White Sox.

“Tepera, Chafin, Kimbrel were the guys that we went to to win baseball games,” manager David Ross said. “When you lose two of those three guys, it makes it difficult. Those guys pitch really big innings.”

Madrigal has been considered one of the best prospects in baseball for the last several years. The second baseman was off to a great start for the Sox this season, slashing .305/.349/.425 with four triples, two homers, 11 walks and just 17 strikeouts before needing season-ending surgery to repair the proximal tendon tears in his right hamstring.

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