Ian Stewart’s tenure with the Cubs could be brief.
According to Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times, Stewart will undergo exploratory arthroscopic surgery on his left wrist next week in Cleveland and is expected to miss the rest of the season.
Stewart has been sidelined since June 12, but his wrist has been an issue for far longer. In fact, it’s believed the discomfort could be related to a compression fracture he suffered in the minors in 2006.
Stewart was acquired from the Rockies last December along with right-hander Casey Weathers for outfielder Tyler Colvin and infielder D.J. LeMahieu. The 27-year-old third baseman was hitting just .201/.292/.335 with five homers and a .627 OPS in 55 games prior to hitting the disabled list. He’s due a raise in arbitration this winter from $2,237,500 salary, so it’s safe to peg him as an early non-tender candidate.
Fellow second basemen Javier Baez of the Cubs and D.J. LeMahieu of the Rockies got into a disagreement in the top of the third inning of Sunday’s game at Coors Field over sign-stealing.
LeMahieu reached on a fielder’s choice ground out, then advanced to second base on Charlie Blackmon‘s single. While Nolan Arenado and Trevor Story were batting, Baez was concerned that LeMahieu was relaying the Cubs’ signs to his teammates. Baez decided to stand in front of LeMahieu to block any information he might have been giving to Arenado and Story. LeMahieu got irritated and the two jawed at each other for a bit. Umpires Vic Carapazza and Greg Gibson had to intervene to tell Baez to knock it off.
There has always been a back-and-forth with alleged sign-stealing. As long as teams aren’t using technology to steal signs, it’s fair game for players to relay information to their teammates about the opposing team’s signs. Last year, MLB determined the Red Sox went against the rules and used technology — an Apple watch in this case — to steal signs from the Yankees. Other teams in the past have been accused of using binoculars from the bullpen to steal signs. In this particular case with Baez and LeMahieu, there was no foul play going on, just Baez trying to make the Rockies cede what he perceived to be their slight competitive advantage.
The Cubs went on to beat the Rockies 9-7 on Sunday.