The Chicago Cubs are recalling former first-round pick Ian Happ in advance of their weekend series in Milwaukee, general manager Jed Hoyer told 670 The Score on Thursday.
Happ, whose strikeout percentage ballooned to 36 percent in 2018, was demoted at the end of spring training. He hit 24 home runs during his rookie season in 2017, but he has 296 strikeouts in 257 big league games.nike nfl jerseys for cheap
“It’s a small, small step backward for a big step forward,” Cubs president Theo Epstein said after the demotion.
Happ, 24, showed slow improvement at Triple-A Iowa but has been hot in July, hitting .324 with a .451 on-base percentage. Overall, he has compiled a .795 OPS in 99 games this season, including 16 home runs, 65 walks and 113 strikeouts.
Epstein recently indicated Happ had fixed some issues with his swing and simply needed to “put it all together” in order to advance to the next step.
“I give him a lot of credit for staying patient and true to what we talked about,” Hoyer said, according to 670 The Score.
The Cubs are likely to option a pitcher to the minors to make room for Happ, but the team hasn’t made the move official yet. They currently have nine relievers on the roster.cheap nike nfl jerseys china
Hoyer told the radio station that Happ will play mostly in the outfield but could see time at second base. The Cubs recently demoted middle infielder Addison Russell, giving the job at second to Robel Garcia and David Bote. The switch-hitting Happ looks to also be in the mix.
The Des Moines Register was first to report Happ’s call-up.
The Cubs start the series against the Brewers on Friday night. The Cubs are tied with the Cardinals for first place in the National League Central, with the Brewers two games out.
This is a pivotal stretch in the division. After three games against Milwaukee, the Cubs go to St. Louis for three games and then return to Wrigley Field to host the Brewers for a three-game set.