The Cubs announced today that Cubs shortstop Javier Baez likely won’t be able to return to the field of play this month, with ESPN.com’s Jesse Rogers among those covering the news on Twitter. He’s planning to rehab his hairline thumb fracture in hopes of being ready for some or all of the postseason.
The news is obviously disappointing, if not unexpected given recent developments. That said, it’s promising that the examination by a specialist did not result in the identification of any damage to thumb ligaments.
Going without Baez undoubtedly hurts the Cubs, who are still trying to chase down the Cardinals in the NL Central while holding off challengers for the final Wild Card spot. With Addison Russell also sidelined, the club was forced to dip into its minor-league system and call up top prospect Nico Hoerner today.
While Baez won’t be able to help the Cubs make it into the postseason, it seems there’s still hope he’ll return to action if they do qualify. His progress, therefore, remains of keen interest even though it doesn’t seem there’s any cause for long-term worry.