Now this is a great update to get at the start of the new year.
Speaking with Chicago Cubs farm director Jared Banner, Tommy Birch relays that outfield prospect Brennen Davis “has no limitations at this time.” That’s a significant note, given that Davis’s Arizona Fall League season ended early with a stress reaction in his back – the kind of injury that comes with loads of uncertainty about the timeline for recovery, especially for a guy who missed most of last season with a separate back issue and surgery.
“He’s doing well,” Banner said of Davis, according to Birch. “He’s feeling healthy. He’s been spending a lot of time at our complex this offseason with our staff. I think he’ll be in a great place physically when camp starts.”
Truly, that’s all you’re hoping for in 2023 from Davis: health. The talent is sky high, and Davis only just turned 23. If he can settle back into a rhythm at Triple-A this year, there’s no reason to think he won’t eventually contribute at the big league level. Ideally, the Cubs will have a sense late in the year whether Davis can be expected to be a starter in the outfield in 2024, as that would impact some significant planning decisions (Ian Happ and Cody Bellinger will both be free agents after this season).
All that said, even if Davis is healthy, I do think we need to remember that he had some swing-and-miss issues to keep working on (even his breakout at Double-A in 2021 came with a whopping 30.7% K rate). In other words, while health is the primary thing you’re hoping for, we shouldn’t expect that Davis will dominate from the jump just because he’s healthy. There is still progress to be made.
Health is the first step, though, and it wasn’t a guarantee heading into Spring Training. So today’s update is a very good one.
More from Birch and Banner: