The wait is finally over for Cubs fans after eight grueling games. On Thursday afternoon, the Cubs promoted top prospect Kris Bryant from Triple A Iowa, and the young power hitter is expected to join the team in Chicago on Friday. Bryant announced the news on his Twitter feed:
Bryant, 23, started the season in the minors even after a spring in which he hit nine home runs in only 32 plate appearances. Despite Cubs president Theo Epstein’s denials, the decision to start him at Triple A was likely without baseball merit, but rather due to the arbitration clock rules within MLB’s collective bargaining agreement. By keeping Bryant in the minors until Thursday, he will not be credited with a full year of service time, meaning the Cubs will control his rights for an extra year before he can become a free agent in 2021.
Bryant has continued his torrid spring at Triple A, hitting three home runs in his first 28 at bats with a slash line of .321/.364/.679. He will likely replace Mike Olt as the Cubs starting third baseman once he’s added to the 40-man roster. Olt was placed on the disabled list with a fractured wrist after being hit by a pitch in Colorado over the weekend.