Javier Baez is not only locked in at the plate but he could be close to seeing time at third base.
The Iowa Cubs beat Albuquerque 9-3 on Tuesday night behind four home runs, two off the bat of Javier Baez. Arismendy Alcantara and Christian Villanueva also went deep Tuesday. Baez hit a pair of two-run homers, the second multi-homer game in 10 days for Baez.
Javier Baez appears to be applying the adjustments he was sent to Iowa to work on, along with moving closer to the plate. And the Cubs are having internal discussions about calling him up for the upcoming Interleague games in Detroit, Cleveland and Minneapolis.
Reports have suggested that either Javier Baez or Addison Russell could be shifted to third base, with Kris Bryant moving to left field, in order for the Cubs everyday lineup to include Anthony Rizzo, Starlin Castro, Kris Bryant, Jorge Soler, Addison Russell and Javier Baez.
The Cubs started Kris Bryant in left field Tuesday night. And Joe Maddon said it wasn’t a precursor to a position switch, it was only for one game against a left-handed starting pitcher with Jorge Soler unavailable.
According to a report from Ashley Marshall, Javier Baez has been taking grounders at third base “during infield this week and he could play games there in the coming weeks.” Marty Pevey cautioned not to read too much into him playing third base.
Javier Baez went 4-for-5 with two home runs and four RBI on Tuesday night without any strikeouts. Baez has raised his season slash line to .325/.397/.545 with six doubles and seven home runs for a .947 OPS. In 32 games, Baez has walked 10 times with 33 strikeouts.
The Cubs could wait until after the two-game series in Detroit (June 9-10) before calling Baez up. If the Cubs wait until June 11 the team will gain an extra year of control. And that would give him time to play third base at Iowa.
The Cubs have not said that Javier Baez or Kris Bryant will be changing positions. But the timing of Baez taking grounders at third, reports indicating he could be an option to add offense for the upcoming Interleague games and Bryant making his first start in left field point to the Cubs possibly shaking up the roster in the coming days. Stay tuned …