Despite holding a 4-8 record, the young 2013 season has been far from uneventful for the Chicago Cubs. Fans have been sent through a whirlwind of chaos and confusion, from late-game meltdowns and suspense to mysterious goat packages and Jorge Soler's attempted assault on an opponent.
While Soler serves a five-game suspension for charging an opponent's dugout while wielding a bat, other Cubs minor leaguers strive to take the necessary steps to the majors in 2013. Some, like Javier Baez, look to make their Major League debut, while others like Brett Jackson seek to return to the mother club.
Although shortstop Javier Baez is currently assigned to Single-A Daytona, he is expected to make a quick ascent through the ranks of the minor leagues.
After hitting .298 in 2013 spring training, he has struggled in his short time spent in the minors this season. He is hitting only .170 in 47 at-bats with 14 strikeouts and only two walks.
Despite this, Baez has the work ethic and dedication to overcome his slump.
With so little experience, it is difficult to say whether or not Baez will break into the majors this season. If he does, it will certainly be in late September.
Brian Bogusevic had a stellar spring, and he has so far continued his hot streak in Triple-A Iowa. Bogusevic, who played 146 games with the Houston Astros last season, hit .410 in spring training and has hit .366 in Triple-A in 12 games.
Because of the additions of Scott Hairston and Nate Schierholtz in the offseason, Bogusevic failed to make the roster for the beginning of the 2013 season.
The Cubs would be foolish not to give him some time this season, but he also may be great trade bait for a team looking to make a late push for the playoffs.
Josh Vitters struggled in his time with the majors in 2012, but because of the lack of stability at third base, he may see some time with the Cubs at the hot corner in 2013. Ian Stewart has been injured for much of his time on the north side, and the futures of current third basemen Luis Valbuena and Alberto Gonzalez have not been determined.
The Des Moines Register reported that Vitters may make his first appearance in the Triple-A lineup next week. He has been sidelined with back spasms since the beginning of the Triple-A season.
Although Chris Rusin struggled in his brief time in the majors in 2012 with a 6.37 ERA, he looked quite impressive in spring training, going 3-0 with only a 1.93 ERA. The Cubs are definitely in need of a lefty, and Rusin may be just what they're looking for.
The only lefties on the Cubs roster are James Russell and Hisanori Takahashi, with Travis Wood being the only lefty in the rotation.
Brett Jackson struggled greatly in 2012 with the Cubs, hitting only .175 in 120 at-bats. His off-season swing modifications have been well-documented, and they showed in spring training. Jackson hit .294 and is now hitting .244 in Triple-A Iowa.
Jackson likely will return to the majors in the next few months if his offense continues to improve.