Cubs News & Notes – 1/27/17: Heyward Video, Baez’s Defense, All-Star Game, Theo Epstein & More

There are 18 days until pitchers and catchers report to the Cubs Spring Training facility. Yes, in just a little over two weeks this relatively quite period is going to be replaced by heaping helpings of baseball goodness. It’s going to be a lot of fun in Mesa this year as the World Series champions gear up to defend their title.

  • If you haven’t seen it yet, the Cubs have updated their schedule for the World Series trophy tour. The remaining tour includes stops in Iowa, Nebraska, Tennessee, and Michigan before heading to Mesa for a stop at Spring Training.
  • I made my way down to Sloan Park yesterday and caught Jason Heyward’s hitting batting practice for about an hour and a half. I was lucky enough to be there when he walked out to the fields, so I caught his entire session. You’ll definitely want to check out the videos of his new swing to see for yourself just how comfortable he’s looking.
  • We’ve all known for a while just how special a talent Javier Baez is for the Cubs. While that’s true, many people only discovered him during the Cubs’ 2017 postseason run, during which he made plenty of stellar defensive plays. Now the fans have voted in the annual Fans Scouting Report and the result is that Javy is the top-rated second baseman heading into 2017.
  • The commissioner’s office announced that the 2019 All Star game will be held at Progressive Field. At Cubs Convention earlier this month, Tom Ricketts spoke about his desire to host the All-Star game at Wrigley Field in 2020, once the renovations have been completed. The infrastructure will be in place and, if you’ve seen the plans you’ll know, it’s going to be beautiful. Holding the ASG at Wrigley would be a boon for MLB as much as it would be for the Cubs, giving the league a chance to showcase what is likely the most beloved park in all of baseball.

  • In case you missed it, Evan Altman wrote a great piece on Theo Epstein, highlighting his thoughts on how to succeed in any field, not just baseball. It got Evan thinking about what we’ve done here at Cubs Insider with our recent makeover. Of course, we’re hoping to find a lot of success here and we realize that all starts and ends with you, the readers.
  • If you like what we do here nearly as much as we like doing it, we hope you’ll understand that it takes resources to do this for you. I dedicate all of my time trying to build a beautiful and, dare I say, immersive experience for you. In fact, I’m getting ready to head to Sloan Park after I publish this in hopes of getting some more exclusive video content to share (like the Heyward video above). Please support us if you can by clicking on links and buying Cubs gear through our site. Maybe you can head over to Amazon and check out their Interesting Finds of the Day. Anything helps. Thank you for your support and for coming to Cubs Insider to follow our favorite team.
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