Dansby Swanson, the shortstop for the Chicago Cubs, has been living up to his $177 million contract, both in terms of his Gold Glove defense and his impressive production. He is one of the top 10 most valuable players in baseball this season. However, being a face of the franchise also means taking on responsibilities, such as being available for the team and being a field general.
Swanson has played 96% of the team's innings at shortstop and has made an effort to engage with his teammates, sharing his experiences and understanding the organization's long-term vision. The Cubs are currently 26-33, and if they want to remain intact and have a chance to play meaningful games in August and September, they need to focus on winning and being better every day, rather than worrying about the possibility of the front office selling at the trade deadline.
In a recent interview, Gabe Vincent of the Miami Heat stated that the team is not concerned about receiving respect and is solely focused on winning four games. Similarly, the Cubs need to focus on winning games rather than worrying about potential trade fits for players such as Shane Bieber, Brewers stars, and the Mets.
The Cubs are cautioning against buying into Nick Madrigal's recent success in Triple-A, as the light-hitting middle infielder has struggled to perform at the Major League level. Though Madrigal has been hitting well in the minors since his demotion from the Cubs, history suggests that his success may not translate to the big leagues.
Los Angeles Angels third baseman Anthony Rendon is expected to return to the starting lineup for the first time since May 13th, when the Angels face off against the Chicago Cubs on Tuesday night in Anaheim, California. Rendon has been out of commission due to a strained groin, which is only one of many injuries that have plagued him throughout his time with the Angels.
Despite his struggles, Rendon's return will create a difficult decision for Angels manager Phil Nevin, as Gio Urshela, who has been filling in for Rendon at third base, is playing well, ranking fourth in the American League with a .310 batting average. Rendon will likely take the roster spot of reserve infielder Livan Soto, but the Angels may also consider promoting infielder David Fletcher, who has been playing well for Triple-A Salt Lake, hitting .347 with 21 RBIs in 35 games.