Finally, we have reached the month in which baseball resumes after a long winter.
The Cubs will begin their 2023 Spring Training season three weeks from Saturday, February 25, at Sloan Park against the Giants.
What are some of the events upcoming before those first games happen? Here’s a brief list of what’s happening in baseball before those first spring games.
Through February 17: Arbitration hearings for eligible players who have not settled contracts for 2023. The Cubs don’t have any players headed to a hearing as all players agreed to terms before the deadline. Here’s a list of all eight Cubs who have had arbitration hearings:
2021 — Lost to [Ian] Happ, $4.1 million (club figure: $3.25 million)
2018 — Beat Justin Grimm, $2.2 million (sought $2.475 million)
2010 — Beat Ryan Theriot, $2.6 million ($3.4 million)
1993 — Beat Mark Grace, $3.1 million ($4.1 million)
1990 — Lost to Shawon Dunston, $1.25 million ($950,000)
1988 — Beat Andre Dawson, $1.85 million ($2 million)
1985 — Beat Leon Durham, $800,000 ($1.1 million)
1980 — Lost to Bruce Sutter, $700,000 ($350,000)
February 15: Cubs pitchers and catchers will have their first official workout. Many Cubs are already in Mesa working out at their Performance Center and having informal workouts. However, Cubs pitchers participating in the World Baseball Classic (Javier Assad, Roenis Elias, Marcus Stroman, Rowan Wick) will officially report two days earlier.
February 20: Cubs position players will have their first official workout. Position players in the WBC (including Nick Madrigal, Matt Mervis, Seiya Suzuki and Miles Mastrobuoni, among others) officially report February 16.
February 23: Cubs team photo day. It’s always fun to examine some of the weird and wild poses the official photographers have for players on photo day, which often starts as early as 7 a.m.
February 25-26: The Innings Festival, a baseball-themed music fest, will take place in both Spring Training states, Arizona and Florida. In Tempe, Arizona, Green Day, Eddie Vedder, Weezer, The Black Crowes and Marcus Mumford are among the headliners. In Tampa, Florida, music acts include Imagine Dragons, Pitbull, The Dave Matthews Band and The Avett Brothers.
Throughout February: The Cubs are busy constructing a new scoreboard at Sloan Park. I’ll continue to document progress here; beyond the article I posted last month, there was no visible progress as of yesterday.
That should get you ready for baseball. It’s coming soon!