Dansby Swanson reports to Chicago Cubs Spring Training
Chicago Cubs position players don't have to officially report to Spring Training until next Monday, February 20, but many of the team's position players are already in camp. Shortstop Dansby Swanson is among those players as he was spotted at the team's Spring Training facility on Tuesday.
Swanson was the prized signing of the offseason for the Cubs as he agreed to a seven-year deal with the team worth $177MM. Swanson's deal includes a full no-trade clause and he is entering the 2023 season as the new face of the organization at the Major League level.
During his introductory press conference, Swanson was asked about earning the nickname "The Lieutenant" while with the Atlanta Braves. Swanson pushed back against the nickname but believes it originated from his leadership style. By all accounts, Swanson is a player that will hold his teammates accountable while also serving as a lead-by-example type.
Since the 2021 Major League Baseball trade deadline, there is no question that the Cubs have lacked leadership. Catcher Willson Contreras was certainly an emotional leader for the Cubs but he did not appear to be the type of leader that meshed well with manager David Ross. After Contreras criticized the team's efforts during the 2021 season, Ross pushed back publicly against the intent of the catcher's comments. Contreras is now with the Cardinals and the Cubs are a team that will be led on the field by Swanson.
Swanson reporting to Spring Training early will only help the Cubs. The likes of center fielder Cody Bellinger, second baseman Nico Hoerner, and right fielder Seiya Suzuki have already reported to camp and now Swanson will have the opportunity to mesh with his new teammates. Top prospects Pete Crow-Armstrong, Brennen Davis, Kevin Alcantara, and Matt Mervis are in camp as well, and Swanson will be a player that they can turn to during this exhibition period for the Cubs.