Looking back on the 2021 season, it is hard to get past the team’s big trades and abysmal record. The club traded away superstars including Anthony Rizzo, Javier Baez, Kris Bryant and Craig Kimbrel, among other players. Not only that, after being in first place in June, the Chicago Cubs ended up finishing off the season 71-91 with many holes to fill looking onto 2022.
Before Major League Baseball’s lockout of the players, president and general manager Jed Hoyer made several moves to fill one of the team’s holes: starting pitching. The Chicago Cubs signed free-agent right-hander Marcus Stroman and claimed Wade Miley off waivers.
Chicago has already made a few other noteworthy signings in an effort to contend next season. However, the roster, on the whole, still looks a lot like it did in 2021, and though the team struggled last year, there were some bright spots. One of those came in the form of third baseman Patrick Wisdom. Wisdom was solid throughout the 2021 season, and there is no reason his success can’t continue moving forward.
In 2012, Wisdom was drafted by St. Louis out of St. Mary’s College in California. He spent five years in the Cardinals’ minor league system until he was given his first shot in the major leagues in 2018. Debuting in August, Wisdom played in 32 games and hit .260, playing both first and third base. Fast forward to December of 2018, the Cardinals traded him to the Texas Rangers for Drew Robinson.
During his time in Texas, Wisdom saw even less playing time and was sent back down to the minor leagues in late April of that season. He spent most of the 2019 campaign in the Texas minor league system and was released after the season. Then, the Seattle Mariners picked up Wisdom, but he spent yet another year in the minor leagues until he was released in August 2020 and found himself on the Chicago Cubs.
After just two major league plate appearances in 2020, Wisdom began 2021 with Triple-A Iowa. However, he was given another chance later in the season when the Cubs brought him up in May to play third base. The now 30-year old Wisdom was one of the players who brought a simmer of light into a dark season.
Chicago Cubs: Patrick Wisdom will get a chance to prove himself in 2022
Last season, Wisdom broke Kris Bryant’s Cubs rookie home run record, hitting a total of 28 homers. In addition, wisdom slashed .231/.305/.518 with 61 RBI and 54 runs scored. Though he did see a decline in the season’s final weeks, Wisdom was hot last year. It seems as if he keeps doing what he was doing; his success will continue going forward.
Don’t get me wrong. He’s got work to do – but he’s shown the ability to grind his entire career, so cutting down on the strikeouts could just be the next step in his evolution as a big leaguer.