3 Chicago Cubs who deserve a crack at leadoff moving forward

(Photo by Ron Vesely/Getty Images)
(Photo by Ron Vesely/Getty Images) /
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Nico Hoerner / Chicago Cubs
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3 Cubs who deserve a shot at leadoff moving forward: #1 – Nico Hoerner

Finishing this list off, we arrive at the Cubs former first round pick, Nico Hoerner. Hoerner was drafted 24th overall in the 2018 draft and, same as Madrigal, quickly rose up the minor league ranks. Even faster in fact. He was the first player from his draft class to be called up to the bigs. In 78 at-bats, Hoerner slashed .282/.305/.436 with three homers and 17 batted in. Though a small sample size, the immediate impact he made on the big league club was extremely promising.

Ever so consistent, Hoerner batted .303/.351/.408 in three years at Stanford, .327/.450/.571 collectively in 2018 in the Minors and .292/.349/.403 in 2019 before being called up less than a year and a half after he was drafted. In 2021, Hoerner was off to the best start of his young career with a line of .313/.388/.388, is yet to hit a long ball but has driven in 13.

Though currently on the IL with an oblique strain, Hoerner undoubtedly has a place on this team long-term. A high contact bat and extremely efficient on-base percentage make him a prime candidate to take over leadoff duties, especially if he can stay healthy and continue to do the little things right.

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Hoerner is a .289/.369/.409 in 179 career at-bats at Wrigley Field and with him expected to be a key part of the core moving forward, hopefully when he comes back from the IL he has a chance to shine and earn the leadoff spot, either late this season or early in 2022.