Nico! Nico! Nico! The chants rang through Petco Park on Monday night as the Cubs played the San Diego Padres, and for good reason… the rookie was sensational.
Nico Hoerner went 3-for-5 with two runs scored, four runs batted in and a few sensational defensive plays at shortstop. It was everything and more than Cubs fans could have imagined when the news broke that Hoerner was being recalled.
The former Standford standout showed the Cubs something special on Monday. If the youngster can continue to show half of what he did on Monday night, he will make the Cubs front office think long and hard about leaving him off the Opening Day roster next season. However, that’s next season. What is he going to do right now?
Well, exactly what he did on Monday (timely hits, good contact, solid at-bats, and good defense) is what this Cubs team lacks and will need if they have any hope of making it to the postseason. He will be required to play a big role on this team in September, whether that is at shortstop, at second base or in the outfield.
Fans shouldn’t take one game as the expectation for Hoerner’s play, but it is certainly an encouraging sign to see what he can do on the big stage. If he can have half the impact he had on Monday for the rest of the season, he will certainly help the Cubs into a position to make the playoffs.
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