By | July 27, 2022

If it’s goodbye, Contreras leaves Wrigley ‘with my head held high

CHICAGO CHICAGO Willson Contreras stood in line before walking in the box of batters during the first inning of the Tuesday afternoon. The Cubs longtime catcher stood at the plate with his holding a bat and letting the roaring crowd of cheers at Wrigley Field to envelop him.

As Contreras struggled to hold to keep his tears from bursting earlier, he stated that he would soak up every minute of the final home game in the Cubs uniform. In the game, which was a 4-2 victory against the Pirates the Pirates, he achieved this throughout a tense game at the North Side.

“It was just amazing,” Contreras declared. “I tried to enjoy it, enjoy it as much as I could, and take it all in.”

The business aspect of baseball is on the forefront of fans’ minds right today, because the August. 2 deadline for trades is just a week away. For the growing Cubs specifically, both of their All-Stars — outfielder Antonio Contreras as well as the outfielder Ian Happ — are among the most coveted names that are available on the open market. The Deadline is set to arrive in the middle of when the Cubs are currently on an extended trip through San Francisco and St. Louis.

 

As Contreras, Happ spent time on Tuesday afternoon to take in the surrounding. A crowd of fans on the bleachers in left field gave him a signed ball by delivering it to the people from the club’s bullpen. Happ hit a double that scored two runs that scored Contreras in the process of raising the “W” flag for a sixth consecutive game.

The business aspect of baseball is on the forefront of fans’ minds currently, since the August. 2 deadline for trading is one week from now. For the growing Cubs specifically, both of their All-Stars — outfielder Antonio Contreras as well as the outfielder Ian Happ — are among the top names available on the market. The Deadline is set to arrive in the middle of when the Cubs are currently on the road for two cities, San Francisco and St. Louis.

 

As Contreras, Happ spent time on Tuesday enjoying the surrounding. Fans on the bleachers in left field gave him a baseball and handed it over to people from the club’s bullpen. Happ hit a double that scored two runs and scored Contreras in the process of raising the “W” flag for a sixth consecutive game.

“I wanted to be out there for Willy,” Happ stated. “There’s nothing like seeing the sound of a ‘W’ in Wrigley Field after that song is played and you can notice the W flags flying all around, and people stop and are enthralled by it. That’s why I was looking forward to being in the field and take it into.

“But Willson, we’ve played together for a long time. Being able to be out there for him and give him a hug, those are special moments that you don’t really forget.”

Contreras agreed.

“It was a really incredible moment,” Contreras stated. “This is the only thing that I know. This is the only thing that he knows.”

In the first inning, after the fans gave an applause and continued to shout, Contreras hoisted his helmet up in the air, and waved to the crowd. He then hit the first pitch that he saw by Pirates pitcher Bryse Wilson to center field to score one.

A little over six years ago Contreras was able to control the emotion of his very debut Major League at-bat, sending the first pitch that he saw in the big leagues out in right-center field to score the home run. Since the moment, he’s been a winner of the World Series, started three All-Star Games and grown into an influential leading figure behind the behind the scenes.

“He’s a big part of that championship,” Cubs manager David Ross said, “and is a great player for quite a long period of. Three-time All-Star. Lots of awards and a large part of wins, and a lot of games that were playoff. I think that’s pretty cool.

“You all have your favorites that you grow up with when you’re a baseball fan. And I’m sure Willson’s a favorite for a lot of kids out there.”

A lot of Cubs fans voted Javier Baez, Kris Bryant or Anthony Rizzo their favorites, as well. In the year prior, when the Chicago front office stated that the long-term plan was now their top priority and that the three main players made up a string of trades that brought in many potential players.

The extension talks are seemingly deadlocking and the possibility of free agency on the horizon, Contreras is now in the same position. He has also kept a positive outlook on the future.

“If the Cubs get a good package for me to make this team better, they’re going to do it,” Contreras declared. “I’d be delighted to assist another team reach the World Series.

“If it doesn’t happen, I’d be more than happy to stay here with my teammates and try to find a way to make everyone better and keep being a nice leader, even off the field.”

If a deal came to the desired conclusion If a trade did happen, would Contreras think about signing an unrestricted free agent during the winter?

“Yeah,” he said without hesitation. “This is the team that I’ve been with for 14 years. Why not? This is the only team that I know. … We’ll see what happens.”

Prior to his final outing in the seventh inning, Contreras received a louder response in the crowd. Then, he permitted himself to smile, then raised a fist to the sky in thanks.

“I love how the fans embrace myself,” the player stated. “That makes me feel good. It makes me feel that, if I have to walk away from this team, I can walk away with my head up high, because I know I did everything I could to make this team better from Day 1.”

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