Chicago Cubs: Analyzing key veteran depth on the roster
Chicago Cubs: Jason Kipnis comes home, ready to do his part
On Friday, the Cubs announced they would be selecting the contract of infielder Jason Kipnis and adding him to the roster. Kipnis, 33, was brought in on a minor league contract after the Indians declined his 2020 club option. Kipnis from 2011-2016 hit .272/.345/.423 with 75 home runs and a .786 OPS, earning a pair of All-Star nods. From 2017-2019 he took a step back hitting just .236/.305/.403 with 47 homers in 358 games.
Kipnis comes in trying to get his career back on track with the Cubs, the team he grew up rooting for. The Cubs needed a veteran second baseman who can be relied upon – plain and simple. Even if he does not hit like he did several years ago, Kipnis still has some decent pop in the bat and can play the position fine enough.
Other options at second include David Bote, Daniel Descalso, Hernan Perez and most notably Nico Hoerner. Bote can play the position and will most likely serve as a platoon guy in the middle infield with Descalso and Perez being the light-hitting fringe options who will, at most, be bench pieces.
While Hoerner is the guy for the future, he is still very young with little experience. The Cubs will want to continue to develop him but they need to have experienced players to rely on as they try to contend for the playoffs.
Do not be surprised to see Kipnis slated as the starting second baseman on Opening Day.