There was a time when it seemed better than 50/50 we’d see a Cubs-Javy Báez extension done this offseason, but with so much radio silence on the topic for so long – and with mixed signals coming from the player and the org – it’s been harder and harder to presume a deal will get done.
A minor update on that front from Jon Heyman, who reports that, yes, the Cubs and Báez are still talking extension, but there’s not necessarily any indication that a deal is close. Moreover, there is apparently an Opening Day deadline for the talks (Heyman did not indicate which side set that deadline), so if a deal is going to get done for Báez, it’s gotta be in the next two weeks. Heyman said there’s still “hope” for a deal, for what that’s worth.
Ultimately, I suspect that the negotiations on Báez, who is two years away from free agency, have been complicated by the fact that there was a near perfect comp recently in Xander Bogaerts, but Báez is such a unique star that he’d probably be justified in asking for more than the six years and $120 million that Bogaerts got (even though Bogaerts was a year closer to free agency).
For much more on how far apart the sides might be, see our earlier write-up here. And in the meantime, keep your fingers crossed for a deal. No one wants to see Javy Báez on another team any time soon, man.