The Chicago Cubs have yet to extend outfielder Ian Happ, and he’s dropping many hints that the Cubs should re-sign him before free agency.
Chicago Cubs outfielder Ian Happ had a beautiful season in 2022, winning his first career Gold Glove, playing in the All-Star Game and hitting decently throughout the regular season. The Cubs certainly didn’t have their best season as a club, however, missing the playoffs entirely and finishing the year below .500.
Happ is a reliable player who had some down moments at the plate this past season, and he’s expressing hope for staying with the Cubs. Chicago could benefit from keeping him around as they go through roster development, and while he has one season of arbitration before he hits free agency in 2024, they should make a move on extending him sooner rather than later.
And if the organization needed a push to re-sign him, Happ gave it to them recently.
Happ told Meghan Montemurro of the Chicago Tribune:
“I’ve been really upfront about the fact I love it here,” Happ said. “I can’t say this one thing (winning a Gold Glove) is going to be a determining factor of that, but the whole year, putting together (good stats) on the offensive and defensive side and the consistency from both sides of the plate, all those things give you a chance to be somewhere long term. And hopefully the value you generate is appreciated by everybody.”
The Cubs could benefit from extending Ian Happ
The Cubs have been an intriguing team lately. They made the playoffs in 2015 for the first time since 2008, and then went on to win the World Series in 2016. They made the playoffs two more seasons afterward, missed in 2019, made it again in 2020 and then missed the past two seasons.
Meanwhile, they also seemingly tore down their roster to the studs last season as they traded away stalwarts like Anthony Rizzo, Kris Bryant and Javier Baez. The general belief, though, is that Chicago could be an aggressive player in free agency or even the trade market this offseason.
Letting Happ leave, however, would be in contrast to that notion. He’s been reliable and is only getting better as time goes on, and he could certainly continue to be a weapon for Chicago, particularly if the team adds more talent around him heading into 2023.