Kris Bryant has never been one to show his emotions. His father, Mike, on the other hand, swings his around like a weighted bat in the on-deck circle.
So when Kris Bryant became the last of the Chicago Cubs’ pending free agents to be traded before Friday’s deadline, Mike Bryant had more to say about the Chicago front office than his son probably ever will.
“They’ve been milking this cow for 2½ years and they wait until three minutes until the end, and then the extra year of control they had (in delaying Kris’ call-up to the majors as a rookie) and it’s just … I don’t know,” Mike Bryant said after the Cubs sent his 29-year-old offspring and Bonanza High grad to the NL-West leading San Francisco Giants for two minor league prospects.
“Look, he’s got a shot at another World Series, right?”
Mike Bryant, a former Boston Red Sox minor leaguer, said one of the first text messages he received after news of the deal broke was from Boston-based sportswriter and media personality Peter Gammons, who had covered the elder Bryant in high school.
“He’s like what’s it gonna be like having a Bryant and a Yastrzemski in the same outfield? I said it’s gonna feel the same way as when I was working out with Yaz at Tufts University back in the day.”
The Giants’ Mike Yastrezemski is the grandson of Red Sox Hall of Famer and former Triple Crown winner Carl, affectionately known as “Yaz.”
That said, Mike Bryant said Kris’ initial reaction upon learning he had been traded was muted.
“Kris doesn’t show his emotions too much, but he was bummin’ when he got the news there at the end. It’s all he’s ever known, Chicago. But he’s also excited to be able to write a new chapter, and he’s gonna be with a contender, and it’s the Giants — Willie Mays, Willie McCovey,” he said in alluding to San Francisco’s tradition and two of its most revered Hall of Famers.
Mike Bryant said it wasn’t that Kris’ seven seasons in Chicago weren’t enjoyable, but the constant trade rumors and trying to live up to the considerable expectations of outsiders became a burden.
“But, hey, he won a Rookie of the Year, he won an MVP and a World Series, and last I checked, Barry Bonds doesn’t have a World Series, right?”
“So how can you not look back and say ‘Wow, that was awesome.’ ”