"[Soler] has been playing great, and is locked in now, and great at-bats, great attitude, playing good defense," manager Jed Hoyer said Wednesday. "We have to decide if he's had enough at-bats or not."
Soler has hit .367/.464/.753 with 12 home runs in 150 at-bats across three levels.
As I wrote back on July 24 and reiterated in this week's Prospects Report, the terms of
And judging by his .286 batting average and 1.078 OPS in 14 games at Triple-A Iowa after putting together a .415 batting average and 1.355 OPS in 22 games at Double-A Tennessee, he's awfully close to ready.
But as CBSSports.com user "H4PPYGILMOR3" points out on Soler's player page, the terms of that contract aren't so straightforward. The 22-year-old can opt out once he's eligible for arbitration, giving his promotion the same financial ramifications as any other prospect's. Our own Jon Heyman reported it back when Soler finalized the deal a little more than two years ago. It's true.
I'm not sure it changes all that much for Fantasy owners. General manager Jed Hoyer has said the Cubs prefer to stagger their callups, and promoting Soler ahead of Kris Bryant makes sense for a number of reasons. But with this correction, I'm reducing Soler's chances of contributing this year from "all but certain" to "likely."
As I pointed out in this week's Prospects Report, it would make sense. Soler is unique from most other prospects in that he's already signed to a long-term deal. The Cubs are paying him the same through 2020 no matter when he arrives or what he does, so they only hurt themselves by holding him back. Certainly, they want him ready, but a .415 batting average and 1.355 OPS at Double-A, if only in 22 games, is a pretty good indication he is.
If he keeps it up at Triple-A, the Cubs might decide to cash in on all the money they're paying him and run him out there for the last six weeks or so. And given his experience from Cuba, it wouldn't necessarily be a case of him just getting his feet wet.
Granted, a lot has to go right for all that to happen, but it's a likely enough scenario for you to take a flier on Soler if you don't like what you see on waivers.
Soler has only played in 29 games this season -- 22 with Tennessee -- due to a hamstring injury. But he hit .415 with a .494 on-base percentage, .862 slugging percentage and 1.355 OPS with Tennessee. He also had one triple, six home runs, nine doubles and 22 RBI.
Soler had been on a rehab assignment with the Arizona League Cubs (rookie), where he hit .391 (9 for 23) with one home run, three doubles and six RBI in seven games.
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