I’ll never understand how the body works, man. Sometimes you see a guy just barely take a wrong step, and his entire knee blows out. Other times, you see a guy trucked by a giant dude running at full speed, and he proclaims himself just fine only hours later:
If you missed it, Javy Baez and Jason Heyward came together in no man’s land in shallow center last night – victims of their own range, instincts, and impactful aggressiveness – and offered up one of the worst collisions you’ll see this year, and unquestionably the worst for the Cubs since a certain horrible one in Arizona last year:
How Baez walked away from that with only a left eye bruise is beyond my medical expertise (which does not exist).
Apparently Baez was feeling so fine after the incident that the Cubs determined he did not need to undergo the concussion protocol (Cubs.com), which is surprising. Joe Maddon says he expects Baez will be fine today, and Baez might even be available to play today, which would be even more surprising. I don’t know anything about anything, and I know ballers want to ball … but it sure seems wise to just give Baez a day, even if he seems 100%.
The Cubs face a lefty today, Tommy Milone, but he’s basically been split-neutral for his career. In other words, the Cubs don’t necessarily need to stretch to get Baez back in there today, even if all else equal, yeah, you’d probably like to see him in when the Cubs are facing a lefty and also have a groundball pitcher (Kyle Hendricks) making the start.
*IF* Baez is in the lineup today, I’m going to assume that it was beyond obvious to everyone on staff last night that Baez was completely, totally, beyond-question-completely fine. And if he’s not in the lineup, well, that would be all right. You never know when he might come in late for defensive help.
In the end – if that’s where we are! – it’s truly remarkable that the Cubs had a collision that looked that ugly and both players walk away relatively unscathed. And all exactly one year to the day – to the hour, even – when Kyle Schwarber’s regular season ended after a collision with Dexter Fowler.