Thursday, December 7, 2023

Jason Heyward Will Not Play For the Chicago Cubs Again


Jason Heyward, who signed the largest contract in Chicago Cubs history, will not play another game for the team. Cubs’ president Jed Hoyer said on Monday that Heyward will not return to the field in 2022 and will not be with the Cubs when the 2023 season begin, which would have been Heyward’s final year in his contract.

Heyward has only played in 48 games for the Cubs this year and hasn’t appeared in a game since June 24 against the Pirates. Heyward has been on the injured list because of a knee issue for more than a month.

So, while Heyward has played in his final game with the Cubs, Hoyer said the veteran will still be around the club through the end of the 2022 season.

But again to be clear, Jason Heyward’s playing time with the Cubs is over.

Following the 2015 season, the Cubs made Heyward the highest-paid player in franchise history, signing the right-fielder to an eight-year, $184-million contract. Despite the eventual release, Heyward will still be paid $22 million in 2023 by the Cubs, the last year of his deal.

Here is Jed Hoyer’s full quote on the decision to release Heyward following this season.

In seven years with the Cubs, Heyward played in 744 games and slashed .245/.323/.377.

For whatever reason Heyward’s offense never came around with the Cubs and the only time he was able to sustain some success was during the shortened 2020 season, when Heyward posted an .848 OPS in 50 games. Other than that, he was average at best at the plate during his time with the Cubs.

Heyward was still a good defensive right-fielder with the Cubs, winning gold gloves in 2016 and 2017.

Truly remarkable and I guess you can say some bad luck that Jason Heyward suddenly went from a good baseball player to bad one at 26-years-old after having a track record of All-Star level seasons.

You can try and point to various injuries throughout Heyward’s tenure with the Cubs to find a reason for his struggles, but he simply never was the player the team thought he’d be when the Cubs signed him after 2015. And it’s not like the Cubs were crazy when they signed him. Was it an overpay? Sure, but you had a few other teams willing to commit as much as $200 million to sign him as well.

The Cubs did win it all in 2016 with Heyward as a key figure to one of the best defensive teams ever, breaking their 108-year championship drought. And of course, who could forger “The Speech” that Heyward gave during the rain delay in extra innings of Game 7 of the World Series against Cleveland. Whether that story is embellished or not, Heyward was part of that special group that gave Cubs fans so much joy and he’ll always be remembered for that.

It really sucks how things are going to end, as from an outsider perspective it seems that Jason is a great guy, charitable in the city of Chicago and despite the years of criticism from the media and fans, and I’m sure his own internal struggles to process it all, he never complained or lashed out at teammates or others in public.

Heyward will turn 33-years-old on Tuesday.


Notify of
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Aug 26, 2022 2:50 am

the numbers are actually pretty comparable…he was just never that great

KC in Hawaii
KC in Hawaii
Aug 8, 2022 4:41 pm

Way past due as his health and play has greatly affected taking a roster spot. They should offer him a position on the coaching staff.

Chicago SportsNEWS
Recommended for you

Give us your thoughts.x