After a long, rehab-and-research-filled stay in Mesa, Arizona, Chicago Cubs outfield prospect Jorge Soler is finally headed back to AA Tennessee.
Mick Gillespie grabbed the glorious visual proof:
— Mick Gillispie (@BroadcasterMick) July 5, 2014
Soler has been out from AA since May 15, which he strained his hamstring. That came a week after he’d returned from straining his other hamstring in the first AA game of the season. Oh, and by the way – that came after he suffered an injury in Spring Training. Yes, a hamstring injury.
Unsurprisingly, then, the Cubs took to attacking these hamstring problems in a variety of ways, and hopefully now have it under control. If Soler is healthy and stays at Tennessee the rest of the way, he’ll have gotten in about a half season of pro games this year when all is said an done. Not as much as you’d want to see, given that he missed half a season in 2013, too, but not a nightmare scenario. Soler could make up games and at bats by playing in a fall or winter league. (And, well, technically, he could make up at bats in September by playing with the Cubs, since he’s already on the 40-man roster. The Cubs have given no indication, however, that this is in the developmental cards for Soler.)
On the year, between AA and rookie ball, Soler has hit .362/.455/.638 in 14 games split equally between the two levels (which pretty much the same line in both places). He’s got 11 strikeouts, 7 walks, and 11 extra-base hits.
And that’s what’s so tantalizing about Soler right there: he’s a big, powerful dude who already seems to have a great grasp of the strike zone. Soler is just 22, by the way.
The Smokies play in about two hours and Soler hasn’t technically been activated from the AA DL just yet, so we’ll see if he plays in tonight’s game. Either way, the Smokies are getting a serious infusion of talent this weekend – new Cubs prospect Addison Russell is expected to be there tomorrow.