Hoyer regrets blaming players for failed extensions


Cubs president Jed Hoyer said Tuesday he regrets comments made on the radio this week when he expressed frustration over the club’s failure to extend any of its All-Star core.

“I did express my frustration of never getting deals done,” Hoyer said Tuesday in Denver ahead of the opener of a three-game series against the Rockies. “I think that frustration comes from a good place. It comes from the place of wanting to get deals done and wanting to keep those guys here. 

“If I could do it over again, would I have ended that sentence earlier? I would have.”

In an interview on ESPN 1000’s “Kap & JHood” Monday, Hoyer contended the failure to reach extensions with Javy Báez, Anthony Rizzo and Kris Bryant was on the players, asserting the Cubs' offers will "hold up exceptionally well" historically.

The Cubs traded the three in separate deals last Friday.

“Every one of these guys would say they wanted to stay in Chicago. ‘We want to be a Cub,’” Hoyer told David Kaplan and Jonathan Hood. “But then when we sit down and do negotiations, that wasn’t how they acted.”

Rizzo, speaking on the same radio show Tuesday, pushed back on Hoyer’s Monday comments. The first baseman suggested the Cubs only wanted to re-sign members of their core on discounts.

Hoyer and Rizzo’s relationship spans three organizations, from the Red Sox to the Padres and the Cubs. Both said Tuesday there’s no hard feelings.

“I think the world of him,” Hoyer said of Rizzo. “I think the world of all those guys. Nothing I would ever say would be negative, and if anything, it comes from the place of having hope that we got across the finish line in those deals.

“I think it came from the right place, but I wish I hadn’t gone ahead and said that.

"There’s no soap opera here and our relationship with all those guys is really good, and it will remain that way."

The Cubs president reasserted the club hasn’t closed any doors on Báez, Bryant and Rizzo, adding they deserved to play in pennant races, echoing comments he made after the trades with the Mets, Giants and Yankees.

The trio are set to enter free agency this winter.

“We didn’t end any relationships, we didn’t burn any bridges here at all, and we’ll obviously be having those discussions this winter,” Hoyer said.

Sources have told NBC Sports Chicago that the club is not likely to pursue that with any of the three.

“Clearly there’s no bridges burned, and these guys deserve to be playing in games that matter," Hoyer said, "and not playing in games that ultimately matter for different reasons. 

“They should be competing in games that matter for the pennant races.”

Contributing from Denver: Maddie Lee

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