Chicago Cubs star Javier Baez is headed to the New York Mets, part of the blockbuster deal ahead of the MLB trade deadline.
Baez, who rejected a contract extension earlier this year, became an obvious trade candidate with the Cubs aggressively selling. Once Anthony Rizzo and Craig Kimbrel were dealt, a Baez trade became inevitable for Chicago.
BREAKING: The New York Mets are finalizing a trade to acquire shortstop Javier Baez from the Chicago Cubs, sources tell ESPN. Deal is pending medicals.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) July 30, 2021
Baez, a free agent this offseason, fills an immediate need for the Mets. Francisco Lindor landed on the injured list July 17 with an oblique strain. With the All-Star shortstop expected to be sidelined for a few more weeks, New York finds its short-term replacement.
Once Lindor returns, Baez will shift over to second base. While the 28-year-old hasn’t played the position since 2018, he has more than 1,800 innings at second and is also capable of playing third base.
The Mets are also receiving right-handed pitcher Trevor Williams. Across 58.2 innings this season, 12 starts, he holds a 5.06 ERA with a 1.53 WHIP, but the Mets might be able to get some effective innings out of him at a time when multiple starters are on the injured list.
The trade will become official once players pass their physicals.