Chicago Cubs need Jason Heyward to play centerfield especially if his bat doesn’t improve

(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images) /
3 of 5
Chicago Cubs
(Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images) /

Where to play everyone?

But then the front office managed a surprise one year deal with Dexter Fowler. For a brief time, we were wondering how Joe Maddon was going to find playing time for all four starting outfielders while also working Javier Baez into the lineup. You might remember that Baez played centerfield in winter ball that offseason.

In the first game of that season, there was no problem at all because the Cubs just happened to begin that season playing in an American League park against the Angels. So Soler started at DH, and right field was available for Heyward.

Then in the third game of the season, Schwarber collided with Fowler and Schwarber was out for the rest of the regular season. Soler moved over to left field, and Heyward settled into right field. Since joining the Cubs, Heyward has only started 33 games in center field.

If he were hitting as well as he did in Atlanta and St. Louis, having Heyward play right field would be fine. But the less he hits, the tougher it is to justify having Heyward play a corner outfield position even if he has won a Gold Glove at that position in both of his seasons with the Cubs. Maybe he can also win a gold glove in center field, where his offensive decline is a little more forgivable.