Chicago Cubs’ Addison Russell to be activated tonight

(Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images) /
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Per David Kaplan, the Chicago Cubs will activate Addison Russell before tonight’s game with the Miami Marlins.

When the Chicago Cubs activated then optioned Addison Russell to Triple-A Iowa, many thought it was just a matter of time before he’d be back in Chicago. It looks like that could be tonight, per David Kaplan on Twitter.

As Kaplan mentions, the Cubs’ Ben Zobrist was a late scratch last night for ‘personal reasons.’ We hope nothing is serious, but that might lead you to believe that Zobrist could be a candidate for the move. Also, Daniel Descalso has been nursing a sore ankle for several days but has been available to pinch-hit the last few games.

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Recently, our Janey Murray took a look at who could be a replacement for Mark Zagunis, who Joe Maddon doesn’t have a spot for–and isn’t as accomplished a pinch-hitter as Descalso can be. Zobrist and Descalso could be part of roster moves today. But once they return, the writing could be on the wall for Zagunis. Especially since Maddon has moved Kris Bryant to the outfield more often as he did in 2016.

There’s not a Cubs fan around that isn’t familiar with the situation Russell has created for himself in recent years. But we’re going to focus on baseball. The rest is on Russell to prove to his team–and others–that he’s a better man after all of this.

The Cubs don’t have a player that has any real time at shortstop outside of Javier Baez. So a backup for Baez would be one of the apparent reasons for his activation. I’ve said this before, but the return of Russell should change a thing for Baez. Theo Epstein has said the same. Epstein made it clear to the Sun-Times.

"“But Javy is obviously right at the very center, along with some other position players, of everything good that we do. Risking interrupting that when we don’t have to would be a questionable move.”"

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So while Russell will get time at shortstop, that’s no longer his primary position. For Russell, he needs to appreciate the opportunity, learn from the lesson given and be a good teammate.

Roster moves haven’t been made yet, but the possibility of Descalso and Zobrist to the IL is possible. With Russell being one of the moves, the other is up in the air. Mike Montgomery is eligible to return from the 10-day IL and could be the other move.

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