But before all of that can start, there's some business to take care of.
The $10.85 million is the most ever for a player in their first year of arbitration eligibility.
Coming off a 2017 season riddled with injuries, off-the-field issues and a batting average that has yet to catch up to his elite defensive skills, the 23-year-old Russell has been the subject of trade rumors recently. Bryant, who turned 26 last week, was an All-Star in his first two big league seasons, hitting.292 with 39 homers, 102 RBIs and a major league-leading 121 runs in 2016, when the Cubs won the World Series for the first time since 1908. He's in the first year of arbitration and has a career 2.94 ERA, 1.098 WHIP and finished third in the NL Cy Young voting in 2016.
For players and teams who fail to reach agreements, hearings will be scheduled for January 29-Feb.
There were 189 players eligible for arbitration after teams offered contracts on December 1 to unsigned players on their 40-man rosters, and 173 remained set to swap as of Thursday evening.
Arbitration projections from MLBTradeRumors.com estimated Russell's 2018 salary at $2.3 million should the case have gone before arbitrators. Arbitration hearings are set up for next month, though the two sides could reach an agreement before then.
Bryant, a native of Las Vegas who played his collegiate ball at San Diego, wound up going No. 2 overall to the Cubs in 2013.