Agent Scott Boras said he's unsure whether Kris Bryant will be on the Cubs' Opening-Day roster.
So Boras is preparing his client for an array of scenarios -- including a possible trade as speculation spreads like brush fire at the winter meetings.
"We talk to Kris all the time," Boras told reporters Tuesday during a 52-minute briefing. "Kris is working out, and we fully anticipate, like any great player we represent, that when you get to this level of your career and you have this service time, you're going to be talked about in trades."
Bryant, 27, is nearing free agency. An arbitrator is expected to rule soon whether the Cubs manipulated the start of his service time in 2015, which would allow him to become a free agent after 2020.
Cubs President Theo Epstein expressed confidence Monday that the team acted properly and that Bryant won't be eligible for free agency for two more seasons.
That decision would affect what the Cubs could get in return for Bryant, and the free-agent destinations of Anthony Rendon (also a Boras client) and Josh Donaldson could have an impact on Bryant as well.
The Cubs could be inclined to wait until Rendon and Donaldson sign in hopes of getting a larger compensation package in return for Bryant from a team that lost out on the two premier free-agent third basemen.
The Braves, Rangers, Nationals and Dodgers are among the teams looking for a veteran third baseman.
Boras declined to forecast Bryant's future, instead highlighting the credentials of his client, which include the 2015 National League Rookie of the Year and 2016 NL Most Valuable Player awards as well as three All-Star selections.
"Core premium All-Star, MVP-type players are so valuable to a team, it's hard to ever think how you replace them," Boras said. "And so when you get into those levels historically, it's normally not something that's done."