Baez and the Cubs agreed to a one-year, $11.65 million contract on Friday, avoiding arbitration, Jesse Rogers of ESPN.com reports.
Arbitration raises are as much about experience as performance, a situation Baez will be quite happy with following his awful 2020 season. His performance at the plate completely collapsed, as he hit just .203/.238/.360 after posting a .286/.321/.544 line over the previous two seasons. He struck out 31.9 percent of the time while posting an anemic 3.0 percent walk rate. His defense at shortstop remained strong, but it will be hard for the Cubs to justify giving him an everyday role if he continues to reach base in less than a quarter of his plate appearances going forward.
The Cubs added Baez to the lineup for Sunday's game against the White Sox, Russell Dorsey of the Chicago Sun-Times reports. He'll serve as the team's designated hitter and bat fifth.
Baez was initially in line to receive the regular-season finale off, but manager David Ross ultimately changed his mind, deciding that he wanted to have the 27-year-old get some extra at-bats in prior to the playoffs. Willson Contreras will bow out of the lineup to make room for Baez.
Baez is not in the lineup for Sunday's game against the White Sox.
Chicago clinched the division Saturday and cannot improve its seeding with a win Sunday, so a number of regulars are getting the day off. Baez sits tied with Nicky Lopez for the second-worst wRC+ among all qualified hitters in baseball.
Baez went 2-for-5 with a double and a solo home run in Friday's 10-0 win over the White Sox.
Baez hit his eighth home run of the season to lead off the fourth inning. The Chicago shortstop has had a down year with a .602 OPS, and manager David Ross has experimented with moving him down in the batting order at times, though he batted fifth Friday. Baez is capable of getting hot in a hurry, so perhaps a few good games this weekend could propel him into a productive playoff run starting next week.
Baez will start at shortstop and will bat seventh Monday against the Pirates.
For the second straight game, Baez will hit seventh in the order -- his lowest lineup slot of the season. After briefly appearing to escape his season-long skid with six hits in a four-game stretch from Sept. 12 to 16, Baez proceeded to go 1-for-10 with four strikeouts during the Cubs' weekend series with the Twins. He enters play Monday with a .205/.242/.364 slash line on the season.
Baez went 1-for-3 with a solo home run, two runs scored and a stolen base Tuesday against Cleveland.
Baez started his strong performance with a solo home run in the second inning to record his seventh long ball of the season. It was his first home run since Sept. 2. In the eighth frame, he reached base after being hit by a pitch and swiped his second bag of the season during the next at-bat. To this point in the campaign, Baez is hitting .206/.245/.378 with 20 RBI and 25 runs scored across 48 contests.
Baez is not in the lineup for Friday's game in Milwaukee.
Baez sits for just the third time all season despite the fact that he's hitting .196/.235/.357 on the year. Nico Hoerner will be the shortstop in his absence.
Baez went 3-for-4 with a run scored in Monday's 5-1 win over the Cardinals.
The three-hit day marked Baez's first multi-hit game since Aug. 24. The shortstop has posted a batting average north of .270 in each of his last five seasons but is currently hitting just .205 through 156 at-bats in 2020. Perhaps his strong performance at the dish Monday can get him on the right track for Chicago's stretch run.
Baez went 1-for-5 with a three-run home run in Wednesday's 8-2 win over the Pirates.
Baez took Nick Tropeano deep in the fourth inning for his sixth home run of the season. The Chicago shortstop is still batting just .200 this season, and he'll obviously need to do better than 1-for-5 at the plate to raise that average, but he certainly has the talent to get hot in a hurry.
Baez is out of the lineup for Game 2 of Saturday's doubleheader against the Reds.
Baez, who started the last 12 games and went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts during Game 1, will take a seat for the nightcap. Nico Hoerner will step in at shortstop in Game 2.
Baez went 3-for-5 with two home runs and three RBI in Monday's 9-3 win over the Tigers.
Baez went to work against the Detroit bullpen, hitting a two-run shot off Tyler Alexander in the fourth inning then following that up with a solo home run against John Schreiber in the ninth. The 27-year-old shortstop is still off to a slow start by his standards with a .219 batting average and .684 OPS, but a game like this could be just what he needs to get rolling.
Baez is not in Sunday's lineup against the Brewers.
Baez is 0-for-14 with seven strikeouts over his last three games, so he will head to the bench for a rare breather. Jason Kipnis starts at second base while Nico Hoerner slides over to shortstop.
Baez went 2-for-4 with two RBI in Wednesday's 6-1 win over the Royals.
Baez looked more like his normal self Wednesday after going 0-for-7 with four strikeouts in the first two games of the series against Kansas City. His .229 average and .728 OPS for the season are below his usual marks, but the 27-year-old is capable of going on a hot streak at any moment.
Baez went 1-for-5 with a game-winning single in the 11th inning against the Pirates on Sunday.
Baez scuffled at the plate until the 11th inning, when he delivered a one-out single to bring home the runner who started the frame on second base. The young shortstop is slashing .243/.300/.541 through nine games, and those numbers should continue to rise.
Baez went 1-for-3 with a solo home run, an additional run scored, a walk and two strikeouts in Saturday's 4-3 win over the Pirates.
Baez got off to a slow start this season, but he has been seeing the ball better of late -- the slugging infielder has recorded hits in four of his last five games, going 6-for-20 with three homers, two doubles and five RBI during that stretch.
Baez went 3-for-5 with two home runs, a double, three RBI and three runs scored Tuesday against the Reds.
Baez came through with both of his home runs late in the game -- one in the seventh inning, the other in the ninth -- to help secure a win for the Cubs. They were his first two long balls of the season, though he now has two multi-hit efforts five games into the campaign. He'll look to stay hot Wednesday as the team continues its series in Cincinnati.
Baez went 2-for-4 with a run scored in Saturday's loss to the Brewers.
Baez went 0-for-4 in Friday's season opener but bounced back quickly. He remains one of the most potent offensive players in the league and should produce good counting stats in the heart of a strong Chicago lineup.
Baez posted a .429/.500/.786 slash line with three home runs in 11 Cactus League games before play was suspended.
The electric 27-year-old wasted no time getting into a groove this spring, though it's unclear when he or any other MLB players will be able to take the field again due to the coronavirus pandemic. When play is able to resume, Baez should quickly return to posting elite numbers for the Cubs.
Baez went 2-for-2 with a walk and a solo home run in Sunday's Cactus League game against the Mariners.
Baez looks great in the early going, as he now has two home runs and an absurd 1.914 OPS through five Cactus League games. The 27-year-old has established himself as an MVP-caliber player and should post elite numbers once again in 2020.
Manager David Ross said there are no lingering issues with Baez's thumb, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports. "He's told me no. I've asked him that. I asked him that a while back with the training in the offseason, and I haven't heard anything from our training staff on that subject. So as far as I know, he's 100 percent."
A hairline fracture in Baez's left thumb kept the 27-year-old sidelined for the majority of September last season, but it doesn't sound like there are any concerns regarding the injury heading into the 2020 season. Baez, who avoided arbitration by signing a one-year, $10 million contract with the Cubs earlier in the offseason, hit .281/.316/.531 with 29 home runs and 11 stolen bases in 138 games in 2019.
|Last 7 Games|
|10/02||vs MIA||L 0-2||4||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|09/30||vs MIA||L 1-5||4||0||1||0||0||0||0|
|09/27||@ CHW||W 10-8||5||0||1||0||1||0||0|
|09/26||@ CHW||L 5-9||3||0||1||0||0||0||1|
|09/25||@ CHW||W 10-0||5||1||2||1||1||0||0|
|09/24||@ PIT||L 0-7||2||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|09/23||@ PIT||L 1-2||4||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Minor League Batting Stats|