The Cubs are considering Chase Utley

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The Cubs have internally discussed going after Phillies second baseman Chase Utley leading up to the August 31 waiver deadline, Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times reports.

Utley, battling a right ankle injury, began a rehab assignment with Triple-A Lehigh Valley on Sunday. He’s been on the disabled list since June 23 after posting a disappointing .179/.257/.275 triple-slash line with four home runs and 25 RBI.

Utley has lost the starting second base job to Cesar Hernandez, GM Ruben Amaro announced on July 7. The veteran is owed the remainder of his $15 million salary and will become a free agent after the season, as his option for the 2016 season will not vest.

The Angels have also reportedly shown interest in Utley.

Michael Kopech has opted out of the 2020 season

Kopech has opted out
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Michael Kopech has opted out of the 2020 season. The White Sox starter informed the team of his decision today, and the team issued a press release to that affect a few minutes ago.

The statement from general manager Rick Hahn. said “we recognize that reaching this decision is incredibly difficult for any competitive athlete, and our organization is understanding and supportive. We will work with Michael to assure his development continues throughout 2020, and we look forward to welcoming him back into our clubhouse for the 2021 season.”

Kopech, 24, has only four big league starts under his belt, all coming in late August and early September of 2018, but after a strong spring training he was likely to make Chicago’s rotation at some point in the 2020 season after sitting out all of 2019 following Tommy John surgery. Kopech was among the players sent to Chicago from the Red Sox in the Chris Sale trade back in December 2016. Others involved in the deal included Yoán Moncada, Victor Diaz, and Luis Alexander Basabe.

Now, however, Kopech has opted out.