(670 The Score) Cubs outfielder Ian Happ was “surprised” to learn Monday the organization was trading ace Yu Darvish and catcher Victor Caratini to the Padres in a seven-player deal that will bring back right-hander Zach Davies and four young prospects to Chicago.
“Surprised that Darvish and Caratini aren’t going to be Cubs anymore,” Happ said on the Dan Bernstein Show on Tuesday morning. “I think Darvish just really endeared himself to the fans and came such a long way in a few years that he was a Cub. And just as a teammate seeing that progress for him personally and just what he meant to our team the last couple of years, I loved watching him pitch. He was a great teammate and somebody who was actually really sneaky a funny guy and a good guy to be around. It’s always tough to lose a teammate. And then Caratini is a guy – I texted him yesterday after everything happened – he’s a guy I’ve played with for five years. We were in Double-A together in 2016, Triple-A together in 2017 and kind of came up at the same time. We’ve been playing together for a long time and became very good friends. I wished him the best. He deserves to be a starting catcher somewhere. But man, I’m going to miss him as a teammate as well.”
Happ kept an optimistic outlook when asked for his reaction to the Cubs receiving four prospects who are so young that they’re years away from the big league level.
“You got to trust the process on that,” Happ said. “Prospects, young players are so valuable these days to front offices all over the place. That’s currency in baseball right now. You just have to trust the process long term and understand that whether these guys end up wearing Cubs uniforms down the road or something else that it’s all part of a bigger plan. I still think the Cubs are going to be a very competitive team this year. I think we have a lot of pieces. It’s just our job as players to prepare as best we can to do our job on the field.”
The Cubs are coming off a 34-26 season in which they won the National League Central in the shortened season before being swept by the Marlins in the wild-card round. Darvish was a primary reason why, posting a 2.01 ERA and finishing as the NL Cy Young runner-up.
Happ hasn’t received any direct communication from the Cubs front office – now led by new president of baseball operations Jed Hoyer – about the direction of the franchise.
“You kind of follow Twitter and the news like everybody else,” Happ said. “The hard part about it is those guys are locked in a room trying to get this stuff done. They’re hammering it out. Maybe at some point, you have that conversation down the road when spring training rolls around. But as far as right now, those guys are locked in on doing what they can to better the team for now and the future.”