Javier Baez is always going to be one of those players the Chicago Cubs have a hard time saying goodbye to. He played a very big part in the team not only making but winning their first World Series in over 100 years. The problem is that the infielder appears to have reached his ceiling and the Cubs have a young player who just might be better. With a pending roster crunch coming, a trade or even a DFA of Baez might be on the horizon as well.

Heyward is coming back to the Chicago Cubs

Saturday is going to be a big day when it comes to dealing with the roster crunch the Cubs currently find themselves in.

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Outfielder Jason Heyward is expected to return from the disabled list. His return means that another position player is likely going to have to go. While Ian Happ seems like the obvious choice, simply because no one else on the roster is a brand new addition, he’s also one of the few Cubs who has actually gotten off to a solid start.

Chicago has struggled in the early part of the season and poor plate discipline and sub-par defense has been a big reason why.

While Baez is known as an above-average defender, he’s had the kind of mental lapses in 2016 that make his above average strikeout rates that much more troubling.

Ian Happ has made his case

While Baez has continued to look like the player Chicago knew it had a few years ago, Happ has been impressive in his short stay. Baez has good speed, a ton of power and the inability to lay off a breaking ball in the dirt. It’s the massive power and the speed that makes him plenty attractive.

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The Cubs might need to start looking into just how attractive he is to other teams.

In his very brief time with the big club, Happ has appeared in six games and hit .333 with two doubles, two home runs, and four RBI. Not only has the infielder/outfielder managed to hit major league pitching even better than the Cubs could have hoped, but he’s showing plate discipline that Baez has never managed to show.

Happ has already racked up five walks (compared to six strikeouts) and has posted an on-base percentage of .462.

While the rookie doesn’t have the same kind of foot speed as Baez, he looks like someone who could not only replace the strikeout happy player, he might be able to replace Schwarber in the leadoff spot. This is why the Chicago Cubs need to think long and hard about what roster move they make when Heyward returns to the club. Because the team cannot move Baez on Saturday, what move they do make is going to be one to watch closely.

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