Chicago Cubs News: Ian Happ has been a disappointment in left field

For all the focus that has been on right fielder Seiya Suzuki's offensive struggles, Ian Happ hasn't been any better in left field.

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For all the focus that has been on the offensive struggles of Seiya Suzuki this season for the Chicago Cubs, Ian Happ has been just as bad.

Entering play on Friday, Happ is slashing .238/.358/.401 through 539 plate appearances with 14 home runs and a wRC+ of 110.

Happ's ability to get on base and his recent power surge have pushed his numbers toward being a slightly above-average offensive player but the Cubs' starting left fielder is in the middle of a three-month-long slump that is reminded many of the inconsistencies they saw from the outfielder at the start of his career.

Since June 1, Happ has slashed .213/.323/.391 in 198 plate appearances with 7 home runs and a wRC+ of 97.

What the Cubs are seeing from Happ this season is why there was pushback at the beginning of the season when the team signed the left-fielder to a three-year contract extension worth $60MM. 2022 was the only season where Happ was able to put together a full season of offensive success and with the extension kicking in during his age-30 season with the Cubs, there is some concern that the inconsistencies will be a part of his game.

Even from a defensive standpoint, Happ has regressed from his Gold Glove season in 2022. Baseball Savant has Happ in the 15th-percentile in regard to Outs Above Average and around the 50th-percentile in terms of arm strength and outfield jump.

There are aspects to Happ's game that translate to being a productive offensive player but not in the way that the Cubs need. Happ's ability to take walks would suggest that he would be an ideal leadoff hitter for the team but he is being paid to be a run producer. If that element is missing from Happ's game moving forward, that would be a major concern for the Cubs.

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