Javy and/or Addy?

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As we watched Monday night’s game at Wrigley Field, and given that he’s played there in Addison Russell‘s absence (Addy is at Iowa on a rehab assignment right now), the Chicago Cubs have a potentially interesting problem brewing…do they put Addy back at his ideal position at short, or do they just keep Javier Baez there?

Javy made a couple of nice plays tonight, but this one really stood out:

Now that you’ve woken up from your fainting spell because that was so glorious, let’s sift through the rationale for both Addison Russell and Javier Baez at short.  Keep in mind that both CAN play shortstop, and play it well, at least by the eye test.

Addison Russell seems to be a more solid fundamental shortstop with plenty of athleticism, and his advanced statistics support the eye test here.  Javy definitely passes the eye test (see above), but his advanced stats aren’t as clean or eye-popping as Addy’s even if the highlights are.  There’s also the issue of the super-tag ability Javy has brought to our attention, which may not factor in depending on where the second baseman has to shift.

The other factor may be Addy’s lingering arm and throwing issues, which may stem more from the nagging shoulder issue (which may have corrected itself) than from an actual flaw.  To shorten the throw and take advantage of Javy’s cannon of an arm, should the Cubs swap them so Addy is at second with Javy at short?  I’m of the camp that wants the status quo, with Addy the starting shortstop and Javy as the starting second baseman but backup shortstop.  All things considered, Javy is a hell of a “backup” if you think about it, and he’ll get his chances there whenever Addy needs a rest.

The Cubs have the best of both worlds here, and I’m cool with whatever they decide.


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About Rice Cube

Rice Cube is the executive vice president of snark at World Series Dreaming. He loves all things Cubs, with notable exceptions (specifically, the part of Cubs fandom that pisses him off). Follow on Twitter at cubicsnarkonia

4 Replies to “Javy and/or Addy?”

  1. I am really hoping that Theoyer sees that once Addison has been on the DL and Javy got to settle in as the everyday SS that he really took off just as Contreras did as the everyday catcher after Miggy got DFA’d
    Theoyer is outstanding at identifying talent, projecting talent and drafting talent but I think sometimes they fail to see the mental part of individual players development. It has become very obvious that Javy is thriving with stability in the field and regular at bats. Same with Contreras. Russel really had some off field incidences this season and it effected the team and then he got hurt. I think just throwing him back out there sends the wrong message to Baez and Happ because Happ most likely will have a more limited amount of playing time.
    I never thought that Russel had a higher ceiling than Baez. Baez always gets the bad rap for taking stupid swings but Russel and Schwarber have had some terrible terrible at bats this season and last season too Russel’s 95 RBI last year was in large part line up function and I think it is totally over valued. I always thought Theoyer had that backwards. Jed was always over critical of Baez and in part because he didn’t draft him.

    • I think it’s too early to write off anyone, or to anoint anyone the permanent fixture at those positions. I do appreciate your comment though, there’s a lot of merit to it as I think people undervalue Javier Baez.

  2. Like Baez at short because of his range and arm. Would like to see Cubs try to get Dee Gordon next yr. He has great range, and would solve the problem for the number one hole.Gordon would bring needed speed, steal bases, hit for average, and teaming up with Javy,make the Cubs explosive on the bases. Addison has plenty of upside, but having Gordon would help create runs when the Cubbies aren’t producing with their bats.

    • I don’t think Dee can steal home all that often, so that won’t help with the “cold bats” part. However, I had thought about Gordon as a trade target before the Cubs went full pitching this trade season. It’s a solid idea.

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