After another exam on injured thumb, Cubs won’t rule out a return for Javier Baez

LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 26: Javier Baez #9 of the Chicago Cubs connects for a grandslam as Austin Barnes #15 of the Los Angeles Dodgers looks on during the sixth inning of a game at Dodger Stadium on June 26, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

SAN DIEGO – When it was revealed on Saturday that he had a hairline fracture in his left thumb, many figured that “El Mago’s” season was likely done.

But after seeing a hand specialist, the Cubs won’t rule out the possibility that Javier Baez maked a return to the Cubs’ lineup in 2019, but it could be a bit, and it will depend on the team’s play the rest of September.

On Monday, the Cubs disclosed that the exam of Baez’s thumb confirmed a hairline fracture of his left thumb but there was not damage to the UCL or other ligaments. While they believe the All-Star infielder won’t play for the rest of this month, Baez will continue to rehab in hopes of returning in October if the Cubs can reach the postseason.

Baez injured his thumb sliding into second base on September 1st against the Brewers in a loss at Wrigley Field. He wouldn’t return to the Cubs’ lineup after that and likely won’t now the rest of the regular season.

If he doesn’t come back in the postseason should the Cubs qualify, it would end another outstanding season for the shortstop. The All-Star starter hit .281 with 29 homers and 85 RBI with a .316 on-base percentage and a .528 slugging percentage.

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