Javier Baez traded by Cubs to Mets
By: Mike Stiles - Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Javier Baez (photo courtesy of MLB)

(CHICAGO) – Javier Baez got his wish: He's headed to New York to play with longtime pal Francisco Lindor. But first, the Mets are counting on their big-name newcomer to hold down the fort at shortstop for a while. With the trade deadline fast approaching Friday, the Mets acquired Baez and pitcher Trevor Williams from the Chicago Cubs for outfield prospect Pete Crow-Armstrong. Baez, a two-time All-Star and 2020 Gold Glove winner, gives New York an immediate fill-in for Lindor. The star shortstop, obtained from Cleveland in a blockbuster deal last winter, is sidelined with a strained oblique and not expected back until at least mid-to-late August. Baez, who can become a free agent after the season, is batting .248 with 22 home runs and 65 RBIs. He has 13 stolen bases in 16 tries, but also leads the National League with 131 strikeouts. He has made 18 errors in 88 games. Baez and Lindor both went to high school in Florida and played against each other in front of scores of scouts. They were drafted back-to-back in 2011, with Lindor going eighth overall to Cleveland and Baez ninth to the Cubs. They were teammates with Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic.