While future remains uncertain, Cubs exec Hoyer says he has great relationship with Contreras

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Drew Smyly, left, talks with catcher Willson Contreras during the third inning of a baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates in Chicago, Wednesday, May 18, 2022.

    Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Drew Smyly, left, talks with catcher Willson Contreras during the third inning of a baseball game against the Pittsburgh Pirates in Chicago, Wednesday, May 18, 2022. Associated Press

 
 
Updated 5/19/2022 8:15 PM

A few popular questions for the Cubs right now: Why haven't they extended the contract of catcher Willson Contreras, do they plan to, and do they plan to flip him for more prospects at the trade deadline?

Cubs president of baseball operations Jed Hoyer answered none of the three when he spoke to reporters before Thursday's game at Wrigley Field. But he did have plenty of nice things to say about Contreras.

 

"Willson and I get along great," Hoyer said. "I talk to him almost every day. There's no tension there. I love the way he's playing. I think having Yan (Gomes) here is helping him in the sense that he's really fresh and we're seeing that.

"I think we kind of ran him into the ground with no DH the last few years. He's playing great. I get asked about it every single time I do the media, I give the same boring answer."

While the Cubs have won three straight series and six of their last nine games, Contreras has led the team with a .995 OPS. Backup catcher Gomes is next at .947.

"We wanted to see how this would be if he got more rest and so far, so good," Hoyer said.

Was that the final test before finishing off contract negotiations, or more of a way to boost his trade value? Hoyer wasn't saying.

"I can tell you right now it's not at all where I am mentally," he said. "I think we've spent most of our time how to put a roster together. (Manager David) Rossy and the coaches have done a great job. We've had our struggles at times, but I think the work has been good and the intention has been good. That's been the focus, I'm not really thinking about the deadline right now."

Twitter: @McGrawDHSports

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