Chicago Cubs News: First base becoming a serious problem

After another error during Sunday's loss to the St. Louis Cardinals, Chicago Cubs first baseman Trey Mancini provided more confirmation that he is not the solution at the position.
Cincinnati Reds v Chicago Cubs
Cincinnati Reds v Chicago Cubs / Quinn Harris/GettyImages

Last week, Chicago Cubs first baseman Trey Mancini committed an error in Wednesday's game against the Pittsburgh Pirates that may have resulted in a serious injury to high-leverage relief pitcher Mark Leiter, Jr.

The error continued a dismal performance in the field for Mancini this season and an argument could be made that the Cubs should have not penciled him into the lineup as the team's first baseman again.

It should be no surprise that the Cubs, especially manager David Ross, gave Mancini the benefit of the doubt and he was in the team's lineup on Sunday as the starting first baseman. In the second inning of the game, Mancini attempted a barehand catch on a throw from second baseman Nico Hoerner and proceeded to drop the ball.

Mancini's error, which would have ended the inning had he made the play, resulted in three unearned runs scoring that inning and while no one play can be at fault for a team losing, it's worth noting the Cubs lost the game by two runs on Sunday.

As was the case on Wednesday, Mancini was replaced in the immediate inning after in favor of Cody Bellinger.

Mancini has a player option for the 2024 season but that is a mere formality at this point as the $7MM he can earn next season is far more than anything he will net on the open market. While not ideal, the remaining money on Mancini's contract should not prevent a team like the Cubs to cut bait.

The Cubs have a first base problem.

Sure, that problem can be masked with Bellinger playing at first base while Mike Tauchman impresses in center field but if the other shoe drops on Tauchman's season, then the team may opt to have Bellinger return to center field. If that happens, the Cubs will need someone to play first base and shouldn't be Mancini under any circumstance.

If the Cubs are going to be buyers at the Major League Baseball trade deadline this season, addressing the first base position must be a priority if they are serious about contending.

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