Now that Javier Baez has made his major league debut many fans have begun to shift their attention to the next big call-up. Chances are that it will be Jorge Soler, possibly as soon as September, but it is Kris Bryant who continues to captivate baseball fans. Bryant, 22, is currently second in the MiLB home run race with 36 bombs between AA and AAA.
(stats per baseball-reference.com)
But beyond home runs, Bryant’s performance has been impressive across the board. He has hit for a tremendous average, driven in runs, stolen bases and has also played much-improved defense at AAA. His strikeouts are still a bit high, 129 in 114 games, but that is something that will improve with maturity and reps.
Many fans are calling for Bryant’s promotion and for good reason; the kid is as ready as they come. But Kris Bryant will not join the Chicago Cubs this season. Bryant will remain with the Iowa Cubs because of his contract/rookie status and for the same reasons that we discussed yesterday in regards to Albert Almora. Sure, Bryant is 22 years old, but this is just his first full season of professional baseball and he needs to be allowed to develop at his own pace.
A more realistic timeline is for Bryant to be up in the big leagues sometime mid-season next year (assuming he continues to excel at AAA), similar to what the Houston Astros did with George Springer this year.
It is an exciting time to be a Cubs’ fan because the future is right around the corner and “next year” could actually happen next year. All of the Cubs’ pieces will fall into play soon enough, we just need to temper our excitement for a little while longer.
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