The Chicago Cubs were not expecting to get an enormous amount of effort from second baseman Arismendy Alcantara when he was recalled while Darwin Barney was out for a bit to tend to the birth of his child. The Cubs got a significant impact from Alcantara, which ultimately pushed the team to trade Barney to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Monday prior to Thursday’s MLB trade deadline.
This was Barney’s fifth season with the Cubs. This season he was batting .230/.265/.328 through 72 games. Over the course of his career with Chicago, he batted .244/.290/335 with 146 RBIs and 88 doubles but struck out an incredible 232 times in 2,016 plate appearances. He was not the best Cubs second baseman as he just got caught up in the franchise’s rebuilding process.
The trade with the Dodgers ensures Barney’s participation in a postseason run, something he has never been a part of in his career. He will become added depth for the Dodgers, especially in September when the rosters expand to 40, and if Los Angeles happens to clinch the National League West early, it will give the organization a chance to rest second baseman Dee Gordon for the postseason.
Chicago needed to rid itself of Barney because of Alcantara’s incredible play in such a short time. Barney never recovered when he was recalled from the paternity leave list.
The trade shows how much respect Chicago had for Barney in that the team traded him to a contender, and at the end of the day, baseball is a business. Chicago is moving toward its bright future fast while leaving its old pieces behind.