We’re almost done with Cubs arbitration signings. Javier Baez is the fifth of the six eligible Cubs to come to terms with the team at the filing deadline Friday:
Infielder Javier Baez and the Chicago Cubs are in agreement on a one-year, $10 million contract, sources with knowledge of the deal tell ESPN.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 10, 2020
The $10 million is $700,000 more than the $9.3 million projected by MLB Trade Rumors. Thus the Cubs are now “in the hole” as per the projections — down $450,000.
Baez was on his way to another MVP-quality season when he broke his thumb and missed almost the entire month of September. He still put together a solid .281/.316/.531 campaign with 29 home runs in 138 games and played his usual stellar defense. That was a 4.8 bWAR season.
It is entirely possible that the Cubs and Baez could come to a long-term deal of several seasons, even after this agreement. If they do so, the extension would probably kick in for 2021, so as to keep Javy’s luxury-tax hit to $10 million for 2020.
One Cubs arb-eligible player remains unsigned: Kyle Schwarber. Given the signings already announced Friday, I’d expect we’ll hear about Kyle before the day’s over.