Chicago Cubs: Five prospects who will play in Chicago this season
Chicago Cubs: Could he be the next Ryno?
In many ways, Hoerner has a similar storyline to Alzolay: already made his big-league debut in 2019, status uncertain for 2020, will hopefully make a big impact, fans hoping he starts.
I’ve already gone on the record for Team Hoerner. The man needs to start the season in Chicago and needs about as much “minor-league seasoning” as Kris Bryant did at the beginning of 2015. Not saying he will be as good as Bryant or have that same kind of impact as a rookie, but he could do a lot of the same things Bryant did in 2015, minus some of the power.
Hoerner is a reliable glove with a plus arm for second base (and he can also give Javier Baez a day off every now and then at shortstop), he’s a great contact hitter who won’t strike out a ton, and he’s already taken some of the same lumps Bryant took in his first season, but with the added bonus of having an offseason to adjust and work on those without having to wait nine months. As he wasn’t expected to be called up in 2019, Hoerner was already able to get some MLB seasoning, hammering big league pitching in his first few days in the show before the league adjusted to him a bit in late September.
If Hoerner was indeed able to make some adjustments and get himself prepared for the rigors of a full MLB season, you could see the same confident, smart, and heady ballplayer Epstein envisioned when he signed him out of Stanford in 2018 and when he became the first player from that draft class to make his big league debut.