The 2016 World Series MVP has been on the "restricted list" since May 8th, but as more time goes by, there's less chance of him ever returning to the Cubs.

Ever since Ben Zobrist left the Chicago Cubs to deal with his divorce from wife Julianna, there has been hope that he would get his personal life in order and return to the field.

The Cubs have long said that his departure is open-ended, but they were optimistic that we'd see Zobrist in uniform again.

There was even some talk about Joe Maddon keeping in touch with Zobrist via texting, but now it seems as though there's been nearly zero contact lately.

The Cubs manager said Zobrist will not return “anytime soon” and added he has not been in contact with him of late.

“I have not texted ‘Zo’ in a while and I need to do that,” he said. “I’ve been relying on Theo to carry on that conversation.”

Cubs President Theo Epstein expressed optimism before the All-Star break, saying: “We expect him back later this year. We have sort of a soft understanding of when that might be, but I don’t want to put a timetable on it or overly rely on it, either.”

Zobrist has been on the restricted list since May 8 as he focuses on his family in the wake of filing for divorce. Maddon figures that if he opts to return, Zobrist would need some time in the minors.

“It would be bad to assume that without ramping back up, he’d be able to contribute like we’re used to seeing,” Maddon said. “That is a concern, I think.”


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