Great news on the Javy Baez rehabilitation front, as the young infielder comes back from a broken finger. Tommy Birch reports, via Cubs farm director Jaron Madison, that Baez could begin playing rehab games (presumably in Arizona) as soon as Thursday, with an eye on returning to AAA Iowa at some point next week.
Madison cautioned that the process depends on how Baez responds physically, but even the possibility of a return by next week is great news. As we discussed yesterday, Baez could still be an important factor for the Cubs in August and September.
At the time of his injury in early June, Baez was really heating up, pushing his line to .314/.386/.536 with a 7.0% BB rate and 25.3% K rate (his lowest since High-A). That all came after a delayed start to his season when Baez did not make the Cubs out of Spring Training, and dealt with the sudden passing of his sister. Baez was especially hot just before his injury, going .395/.452/.711 (21.4% K rate) in his last nine games.
Baez is just 22 years old, runs the bases well, plays excellent defense up the middle, and has a high baseball IQ. And, of course, there’s the extreme potential in his bat. Baez’s big league future, in whatever capacity, is bright. Here’s hoping he returns healthy, gets back into the swing of things quickly, and makes an impact for the Cubs in August and September. Had he not been injured when he was, there’s a pretty good chance he’d have already started making that impact.