8/27 Baez, Almora, Bryant to play in AFL
Javier Baez, Albert Almora and Kris Bryant, the Cubs’ first-round picks in the last three First-Year Player Drafts, will both participate in the Arizona Fall League, which begins play Oct. 8. Almora will be on Mesa’s taxi squad, and play Wednesdays and Sundays. Other Cubs on the Mesa AFL roster include pitchers Dallas Beeler, Matt Loosen, Armando Rivero and Arodys Vizcaino.
“It’s really exciting for us,” said Jason McLeod, Cubs senior vice president of scouting and player development. “Javier has had a great year, and he didn’t get to play as much last year in the AFL because of the injury. Kris is ready to be pushed. Soler was going to go [to make up for lost time]. Albert missed time, so he’ll go to instructs and then the taxi squad, which will be good for him.”
This will be Baez’s second turn in the AFL. Last year ended early because of an injury. This season, the shortstop batted .274 in 76 games with 17 home runs, 19 doubles and 57 RBIs at Class A Daytona, and was batting .308 with 18 home runs, 14 doubles and 48 RBIs in 48 games with Double-A Tennessee.