Baez and the Cubs avoided arbitration with a one-year, $5.2 million deal Friday, Jon Heyman of FancredSports.com reports. Baez finished second in NL MVP voting last season after hitting 34 homers, stealing 21 bases and posting a .290/.326/.554 slash line, but baseball's economic setup will keep him a bargain for the Cubs due to his relative lack of service time. He lines up as the Cubs' Opening Day shortstop with Addison Russell suspended for the first month of the season and could play almost anywhere on the diamond once Russell returns.
Baez went 2-for-4 with a walk, a double and three runs scored in Sunday's 10-5 win over the Cardinals. Baez's strong performance helped the Cubs to a win and a one-game playoff with the Brewers for the NL Central division title on Monday. The 25-year-old has been dynamic all season, as he's posted new career highs with 34 home runs, 40 doubles, 101 runs scored, 111 RBI and 21 steals. Baez could very well end up as the NL MVP at the end of the year.
Baez went 2-for-4 with a walk, a home run and three RBI in Saturday's 8-3 win over the White Sox. Baez's two-run shot in the first inning off Lucas Giolito gave him 34 homers on the year, putting him one behind Matt Carpenter for the NL lead, while his 110 RBI pace the Senior Circuit, six ahead of Jesus Aguilar. The Cubs' infielder remains in the thick of the MVP conversation as the team looks to lock up another division title.
Baez went 2-for-4 with a home run, two RBI, two runs scored and two strikeouts in Tuesday's win over the Diamondbacks. Baez got the scoring started early, smashing a two-run home run in the first inning. The 25-year-old is firmly in the mix for the NL MVP with 33 home runs, 107 RBI, 21 stolen bases and a .295/.329/.571 slash line.
Baez went 1-for-4 with a two-run home run in Monday's win over the Diamondbacks. The homer was just the second in the last two weeks for Baez as he's cooled off a bit with just one multi-hit game in that span. Nonetheless, Baez is putting up some MVP-caliber numbers with 32 home runs, 105 RBI and a .294 average.