Happ went 1-for-4 with a solo home run Thursday for Triple-A Iowa. Happ has been hot at the plate lately, as he's gone 8-for-18 over his last five games with two home runs. For the season, the 24-year-old is slashing .243/.359/.432 with eight home runs and 30 RBI through 52 games with Iowa. Happ is still striking out at a high rate (26.4 percent) in the minors, but he could provide a spark for the Cubs at some point this season due to his power and ability to play multiple positions in the field.
Happ (finger) played both ends of Triple-A Iowa's doubleheader Wednesday against Omaha, going a combined 4-for-6 with a home run, a walk and five RBI in those contests. Happ was removed from Monday's game after hurting his finger while fielding a grounder, but his return to action two days later suggests the injury was never much of a concern. Even after his big day at the plate, Happ is sitting on a lackluster .240/.362/.422 batting line at Triple-A this season. A promotion to the big leagues doesn't seem imminent.
Happ is batting .209 with a .681 OPS and 25 strikeouts through 18 games with Triple-A Iowa. It was somewhat of a surprise when Happ was demoted to Triple-A to begin the season, and the 24-year-old has not responded particularly well. He's still struggling to make consistent contact, as evidenced by the .209 average and 33.3 percent strikeout rate. Happ did pop his second home run of the year Monday, but at this point, a return to the majors does not seem imminent.
Happ was optioned to Triple-A Iowa on Saturday, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports. Happ managed an above-average 106 wRC+ last season despite striking out 36.1 percent of the time. He cut the strikeout rate to 25.0 percent this spring but is hitting just .135/.196/.192. His defensive versatility and decent bat should give him paths back to the big-league roster, but he'll need some time in the minors to sort his swing out first.
Happ went 0-for-2 with a walk and two strikeouts in Thursday's Cactus League game against the Giants and is slashing .143/.208/.204 through 49 at-bats this spring. It's been a sluggish start for Happ, which has been compounded by the fact that his main competition for playing time in center field, Albert Almora, has a .976 OPS this spring. Happ's versatility should still get him on the field fairly often in 2019, but it'd be nice to see him get a little hot streak going before the regular season starts.