Chicago Cubs shortstop Javier Baez didn't hold back when he talked about his frustrations over not being able to review video of his previous swings in the middle of a game this year. Jesse Rogers of ESPN reported on Monday that the player mentioned his inability to review previous plays is having at least some factor in why he's struggled so much in 2020.
"To be honest, it's sucks because I make my adjustments during the game," Baez said after the Cubs' win over the Cardinals on Monday.
"I watch my swing. I watch where the ball went, where the contact was. I'm mad. I'm really mad that we don't have it."
Major League Baseball had allowed players to do exactly what Baez is mad they can't do this year. The league took it away because of the Houston Astros.
The cheating scandal during the 2018 season, which the Astros have since admitted to, included shooting and using video of their opponents' hand signals when it came to what pitches they were going to throw.
Baez feels as though commissioner Rob Manfred taking away that tool is punishing everyone.
He told the collected media that the Cubs didn't cheat and yet they are having to deal with something because another team did. He said there are a lot of people struggling because the tool is no longer available. He added he's just one of those having issues.
Baez explained that not being able to look at what he had done previously in a game isn't "how they play baseball" in this day and age. Baez said he needs video in order to make adjustments from one at-bat to the next.
He also said he'd be perfectly fine with MLB sending a bunch of people to monitor how players were using the videos. He doesn't care if there are people constantly looking over his shoulder to make sure he isn't cheating, he just wants to be able to watch replays during the games.
Baez is struggling at a level he hasn't seen since his rookie campaign in 2014 when he posted just a.169 batting average in 52 games. Entering Sunday, he was hitting just.191 through 40 contests, though he did have a better Monday than he's seen in a while.
The shortstop collected three hits, two of which he collected despite the ball never leaving the infield. His struggles have been pronounced enough that some analysts around the club have suggested removing him from the lineup for a few days in order to try and allow him to start fresh.