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Three up, three down: An update on the Cubs, September 20 edition

The Cubs had a really good week and a bad one rolled into one.

Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Since the last update in this series, the Cubs swept a really good team and then... went 1-3 against bad teams. Go figure.

Three up

Zach McKinstry makes his case for the 2023 roster

Since the last update here, McKinstry is batting .269/.269/.615 (7-for-26). That’s a weird slash line, because four of the seven hits are for extra bases (double, triple, two home runs). Overall as a Cub, he has 25 hits, 10 for extra bases (four doubles, three triples, three home runs).

He’s put himself in the conversation for a spot as a spare part infielder for the 2023 Cubs.

Ian Happ is close to joining an exclusive club

Happ hit his 39th double Monday in Miami. He needs one more double and three more home runs to join an exclusive club: Cubs who have hit 40 doubles and 20 home runs in a season. The club as of now: Javier Báez (2018), Anthony Rizzo (2013, 2016), Alfonso Soriano (2007, 2010), Derrek Lee (2005, 2007, 2008), Aramis Ramirez (2008) and Rogers Hornsby (1929). Here’s the entire list.

Yan Gomes has had himself a week

The Cubs catcher has hit 6-for-20 (.300) since the last update in this series with a double and a home run. He’s batting .238/.266/.369 for the season with eight home runs in 252 at-bats. If the Cubs decide not to reunite with Willson Contreras, Gomes could be a useful stopgap catcher for 2023.

Three down

Nelson Velázquez hasn’t hit a home run since August 8

The 2021 Arizona Fall League MVP is getting irregular playing time. The team doesn’t seem to know what to do with him, and he should probably be playing more often so they can make a judgment about 2023. Since the last update here Velázquez is 3-for-16 (.188) with six strikeouts.

Is Rowan Wick going to be around in 2023?

Wick actually had a pair of scoreless appearances since the last update — then got rocked for three hits and two runs, including a home run, in a one-inning appearance in Monday’s game at Miami. It’s a reasonable question whether he’s worth keeping on the Opening Day roster for next year.

Is Franmil Reyes going to be around in 2023?

This month, Reyes is batting .200/.298/.220 (10-for-50) with one extra-base hit (a double). After a hot start with the Cubs, with four homers in August, he hasn’t homered since August 31 in Toronto. The power he previously had, that resulted in two 30-homer seasons, appears to be gone. Is he worth keeping around?


Should the Cubs non-tender Franmil Reyes after the season?

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