Results tagged ‘ Javier Baez ’

3/22 Roster moves

The Cubs made roster moves on Saturday. Blake Parker was optioned to Triple-A Iowa, and Javier Baez, Brian Schlitter, Jonathan Sanchez, Chang-Yong Lim, Chris Valaika and Casper Wells assigned to Minor League camp. With the moves, the spring camp roster is now at 37.

3/22 Baez OK after bruising heel

Cubs top prospect Javier Baez was fine on Saturday, one day after coming out of a game because of a right heel contusion suffered because of some bad cleats. With one out in the sixth and the Cubs leading 4-0 against the White Sox, Baez hit a grounder to shortstop Alexei Ramirez. Baez beat the throw but stepped awkwardly on first base and appeared to slip with his right foot.

“It’s happened before,” Baez said Saturday. “I can’t wear [metal] cleats. I reached for the bag and I felt it a little bit on my heel. I could’ve kept playing but it was my last at-bat anyways so they took me out of the game.”

He has no problem with rubber cleats but was wearing the metal ones because of the wet surface in Glendale.

“If I wear cleats, I just have to cut the back cleat and I’ll be all right,” Baez said. “When I hit the ground hard with all my weight, it hurts.”

He said his shoe “pinched” his heel but the pain was gone quickly.

“It bothered me for a couple minutes and it was gone,” he said. “It’s happened before.”

Baez was listed as a reserve on the Cubs’ roster for Saturday’s game against the Reds.

– Carrie Muskat

3/22 Cubs lineup vs. Reds

Edwin Jackson gets the start on Saturday when the Cubs play host to the Reds at Cubs Park in Mesa. Mike Olt, trying to lock up a spot on the Opening Day roster, will make his second start at third base. Luis Valbuena showed his power on Friday, hitting two home runs in a 7-0 win over the White Sox. We’ll get an update on Javier Baez, who bruised his right heel running to first base on Friday in Glendale. Also, Starlin Castro may get some at-bats in the Cubs’ Minor League games in Mesa. The Triple-A and Double-A teams are facing the Giants squads on Saturday.

The Cubs-Reds game will be on WGN-TV and WGN Radio. Here’s the lineup:

Barney 2B
Ruggiano LF
Rizzo 1B
Olt 3B
Schierholtz RF
Castillo C
Sweeney CF
Murphy SS
E. Jackson P

* If you’re coming to Saturday’s game, please take a moment to check out the Cubs Wives mystery baseball fundraiser in the left field corner, located inside the ballpark. For $30, fans can purchase an autographed baseball. You also can check out some game-used items to purchase. Proceeds go to Paz de Cristo in Mesa.

3/21 Cubs 7, White Sox 0

Luis Valbuena hit two home runs and drove in four runs to lead the Cubs to a 7-0 victory over the White Sox Friday in Glendale. Chris Rusin was the winning pitcher, giving up two hits over five scorless innings. The lefty combined with Alberto Cabrera, Wesley Wright, Jonathan Sanchez and Brian Schlitter on the shutout, holding the White Sox to three hits. Junior Lake had two hits, including a RBI single, and Ryan Kalish drove in a run. Javier Baez had to leave the game after suffering a right heel contusion in the sixth. He walked off the field on his own, and was to be re-evaluated on Saturday.

* On Saturday, the Cubs will play host to the Reds at Cubs Park in Mesa. Edwin Jackson gets the start against lefty Tony Cingrani.

* Fans are encouraged to take part in the Cubs wives mystery ball fundraiser, which will be held in left field of Cubs Park. For $30, fans will get an autographed ball, signed by a player or a seventh-inning stretch singer. Proceeds go to Paz de Cristo in Mesa.

– Carrie Muskat

3/21 Baez leaves game – UPDATED

Cubs top prospect Javier Baez had to leave Friday’s game with a right heel contusion after stepping awkwardly on first base in the sixth inning on an infield single. With one out in the sixth and the Cubs leading 4-0 against the White Sox, Baez hit a grounder to shortstop Alexei Ramirez. Baez beat the throw but appeared to slip as he stepped on the bag with his right foot.

Cubs assistant athletic trainer Ed Halbur went out to talk to Baez, who was lifted from the game. He was to be re-evaluated on Saturday.

Baez entered the game with five home runs, tied with the Blue Jays’ Jose Bautistia, the White Sox’s Jordan Danks, and the Reds’ Chris Heisey for the most in the Majors this spring. Baez also leads the Cubs with 13 hits and 31 total bases. The Cubs infielder finished the day 1-for-3, stranding four runners in his two previous at-bats.

Is there any chance the shortstop will be playing at the big level this year?

“Anything’s possible,” Cubs manager Rick Renteria said. “I can’t discount any of that. In the immediacy, I think we’re as pleased as everybody else is as to how he’s shown this spring. I think he had a pretty good showing last spring also. We’ll just take it day by day and see how we go.”

– Carrie Muskat

3/21 Cubs vs White Sox

The Cubs face their intracity rivals, the White Sox, today in Glendale. Chris Rusin, battling for that fifth spot in the rotation, gets the start. Javier Baez, who shares the Cactus League lead in home runs with five, will start at shortstop. Here’s the lineup:

Bonifacio 2B
Lake CF
Rizzo 1B
Olt DH
Ruggiano LF
Baez SS
Kalish RF
Valbuena 3B
Baker C

Rusin P

3/20 Baez on HR: “It feels good”

Anthony Giansanti is still in the Cubs’ organization after his collision Wednesday night with Javier Baez, and the outfielder knows he wouldn’t be very popular if he hurt the top prospect. The two crashed in shallow left chasing a fly ball in the Cubs’ game against the Rockies. Baez said they couldn’t hear each other calling for the ball. Baez lay on the ground for a few moments, feeling the impact in his left wrist and right knee, and couldn’t bend his wrist.

“At first, I couldn’t take my glove off for some reason,” Baez said.

Cubs fans can breathe a sigh of relief. Baez got up, and stayed in the game, although not until he and Rick Renteria had a conversation.

“He was just telling me if I wanted to throw a little bit and catch the ball because of my wrist, but I told him I was fine and he said, ‘I just want to make sure,'” Baez said. “I don’t like coming out of games, no matter what happens on the field. I don’t like coming out of games.”

Giansanti stayed in the game as well.

“He told me, ‘If you get hurt, everybody will hate me in Chicago,'” Baez said.

Baez had no problems in the eighth inning when he hit his fifth spring home run, which puts him in a tie for the Cactus League lead. The ball landed next to a cactus plant in the batter’s eye at Salt River Fields, and was estimated at 450 feet.

“My first year I played in the [Arizona] Fall League, I hit a ball that far, too,” Baez said.

He did confess that it was “the best ball I hit in Spring Training.” What does that feel like?

“It feels good — you don’t feel the ball hit the bat,” he said. “That’s when you know you hit it good.”

A lot of his friends saw the blast, and sent him text messages. Baez knows a lot of people want the Cubs to promote him to the big leagues now. He’s projected to start at Triple-A Iowa at shortstop. The media asks him about his future every day. So do his family and friends.

“They asked me pretty much every day and I don’t know what to answer,” he said. “I know I will figure it out and let them know as soon as I know.”

– Carrie Muskat

3/19 Baez hits 5th HR

Now the cactus aren’t safe in the desert from Javier Baez’s home run blasts. On Wednesday, Baez belted his fifth home run, another solo shot, in the Cubs’ 9-6 loss to the Rockies in Scottsdale. Baez’s ball landed in the batter’s eye at Salt River Fields, next to some cactus planted there. He’s already broken two car windows during batting practice this spring.

Baez is slightly ahead of last spring’s pace. In 2013, he hit four home runs in 17 Cactus League games, batting .298 (14-for-47) with 10 RBIs. Those numbers did not include two more homers that he hit in an exhibition game against Team Japan. In 13 games this spring, he’s hitting .308 (12-for-39) with five home runs and five RBIs. You can find a video of Baez’s blast on Cubs.com under the “Video section.” Go to “Cubs Video Highlights.”

There was a scary moment when Baez collided with left fielder Anthony Giansanti in shallow left. Baez stayed on the ground, but got up and stayed in the game. Although Cubs fans would like to see more of Baez, the front office insists he’ll open the season at Triple-A Iowa as the starting shortstop.

– Carrie Muskat

3/18 Baez on 2B: It was weird

Javier Baez admitted it was a little “weird” to be playing second base, not shortstop, but he was back there Tuesday night and will be tested at third base in the near future. The Cubs’ top prospect, projected to open the season at Triple-A Iowa, handled all the plays in his debut game there against the Athletics on Monday.

“It went pretty good for me,” Baez said Tuesday. “It was kind of different. It was tough to know where I was going when the ball was hit. It was kind of hard but I tried to make it look easy.”

He admitted that it was “weird at first but I got used to it and I tried to do everything right.”

Baez got some help from Darwin Barney, who started at shortstop. The two combined for a nice double play.

“It was a hard ball to Barney,” Baez said. “I just tried to get the outs. I got it, I guess.”

The Cubs have been working on getting Baez more on his toes, and not flat footed on defense. That’s part of the early drills he’s been doing with infield coach Gary Jones.

“It will take time to get used to that position,” Baez said.

– Carrie Muskat

3/17 Baez at 2B: “Nice job”

Javier Baez passed all the tests at second base on Monday. Making his first start there since high school, Baez didn’t have any problems at second in the Cubs’ 6-2 loss to the Athletics in Phoenix. He made his first defensive play in the second when he caught Alberto Callaspo’s pop up, and handled a groundout by John Jaso in the third. Baez and Darwin Barney combined on a force out to get Brandon Moss at second, and turned an inning-ending double play in the fifth.

“That nice double play with Barney on the hard-hit ball that actually carried him through the middle, ended up coming across the bag toward the shortstop
side, with a long throw back to first, which was pretty impressive,” manager Rick Renteria said. “Nice job.”

Did Baez look comfortable?

“Yeah, he looked fine over there,” Renteria said.

– Carrie Muskat

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