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Cubs SS Addison Russell ‘confident’ despite Manny Machado rumors

Now that baseball season is in full swing, it is pretty easy to tell which teams will not make the playoffs. The Baltimore Orioles are certainly one of those teams, sporting a 14-31 record and stuck in the cellar of the Al East. With the Orioles’ struggles, their superstar shortstop Manny Machado will be a hot name at the MLB trade deadline in July.

Machado is currently hitting .347 with 14 home runs and 42 RBI and will demand a large return for Baltimore. One of the teams rumored to be interested are the Chicago Cubs.

Current Cubs shortstop Addison Russell is not worried  about being on the trade block and just wants to ‘stay focused.’

“I really don’t pay attention to all that,” Russell said on Saturday, a day after reaching base five times in a game against the Cincinnati Reds. “I like this team. I like this organization. I like this ball club.”

“I’ve been in a trade once,” Russell said. “The Cubs have stuck with me when I went through a lot of things. It would be sad if I ever had to leave, but I’m very thankful to the Cubs for giving me an opportunity to play. As far as trade rumors, if it happens, it happens; I don’t pay them any attention. The only time when I even hear about them is the media bringing it up to me.”

Russell was acquired from the Oakland Athletics in 2014 in exchange for Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel when the A’s were competing for a playoff run. Russell ended up being one of the biggest reasons the Cubs won the 2016 World Series, hitting a grand slam in Game 6 with the Cubs facing elimination to force a Game 7, which the Cubs of course won. However, Russell has been struggling this season, batting just .262 with just one home run and 10 RBI.