On Thursday night, the right-handed shortstop decided to bat lefty with a seven-run lead. The Cubs led by seven, and Reds position player Kyle Farmer was on the mound lobbing eephus pitches. The stakes weren't high for the gag.
Baez, as he usually does from the right side, swung for the fences from the other batter's box. He fell to a knee as he flew a ball to center field.
Javier Baez is an entertainer.— Sporting News MLB (@sn_mlb) August 9, 2019
He just batted left-handed!pic.twitter.com/jEx99INsPy
Some traditionalist managers would have been upset at Baez for such a maneuver, but Cubs skipper Joe Maddon is usually a fan of zany activity on the diamond. He is also used to his star infielder finding new ways to enjoy the game.
UPDATE: Maddon in fact did support the move.
Baez asked Maddon if he could hit lefty and the manager told him to go for it. Felt it was a good time to try it in-game (against a position player in a blowout), though Maddon thinks it's something Javy could learn to do.— Jordan Bastian (@MLBastian) August 9, 2019
Does Javy think so? Not so much. He’ll stick to righty. pic.twitter.com/RoIiKALK0g