Chicago Cubs: L.A. loves Baez
Back in 2018 my family was traveling across the western plains slowly making our way toward Los Angeles. We were heading for the annual three-game series at Dodger stadium where the Cubs have had some pressure-cooked games.
On our second night in Los Angeles, my teenage son proudly donned his Baez jersey to go to the game.
More from Cubbies Crib
- Cubs starting pitching has been thriving on the North Side
- Make no mistake: the Cubs are very much about power hitters
- Cubs are giving pitcher Javier Assad a deserved shot
- Cubs: It’s time to start thinking about potential September call-ups
- Cubs: P.J. Higgins deserves to be in the lineup on a daily basis
While I’m very familiar with robust Latin culture in Los Angeles, I was concerned that my teenager might get his jersey handed to him in shreds by the loyal Dodger fanbase. It started with honking horns as we parked our car and walked up to the entrance of the stadium. At first, I was sure people were honking indignantly at my son’s jersey but once we arrived to the stadium, I learned differently.
People that were standing in line left the line and made a bee-line for my son. I couldn’t believe how nice they were.
“Hi, we’re Dodgers fans but we just love Javy Baez,” they would all say as people kept coming up and introducing themselves in much the same way but asking can we get a picture with your son? What they meant was… his jersey. In fact many of them asked if he could put his back to the camera so they could get the Baez name in their picture.
There were no gender gaps either; the women loved Javy because well… he’s Javy. The men loved Baez because of the intense way he played the game. It then dawned on me as it does today, that Baez represents more than Chicago and more than Puerto Ricans; Baez simply represents baseball and the struggle to achieve what you set your heart after. Because of this struggle Baez has been earning fans from Chicago to Los Angeles.
Can all this fan-fare help Baez get back in Cubs uniform next season? It seems like a real possibility given recent reports that the two sides are talking a long-term deal. But no matter where he calls home in years to come, there’s no doubt he represents one of the game’s most exciting talents.