Chicago Cubs shortstop Addison Russell has been out since August 3rd with a strain and plantar fasciitis in his right foot.
Most recently, the Cubs announced that Russell would miss another three weeks after suffering a setback in his recovery. In his absence the Cubs have used Javier Baez at shortstop and it’s worked out fine.
But now the Cubs have no idea when Russell will be back according to manager Joe Maddon.
The skipper spoke to CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney about Russell and the potential return. It appears as if Russell could miss the entire season or return in time for the playoffs.
Here’s what he told Mooney:
“There’s no assumption,” manager Joe Maddon said Thursday at PNC Park. “He could be out the rest of the year. He could be back. I don’t know.”
The new report on Russell came out August 31 with a timeline of 3 weeks. Mooney notes that we are one week into the timeline with the NLDS starting on October 6th.
If Russell can’t come back, Chicago has plenty of options.
Baez would stay at shortstop and that would allow Maddon to use Ben Zobrist and Ian Happ at second base, or potentially both in the lineup at the same time with Happ in the outfield.
If Russell indeed comes back, it could be a boost to the Cubs offense. During the playoffs last season, Russell was damn good in the World Series helping the Cubs come back from 3-1 down.
His defense is also something that the Cubs would like to have back in their infield.
There’s also the question of Russell’s future with the Cubs. The shortstop could be a prime trade candidate if Theo Epstein were to go that route to acquire a starter in the offseason.
But as of now, it’s all up in the air.