Less than five months removed from winning their first World Series in 108 years, there is little that could dampen the Cubs' spirits. But a shoulder injury to Eloy Jimenez had the organization holding its collective breath as they awaited the results of an MRI and CT scan. On Monday, they were able to exhale.
The Cubs' top prospect was diagnosed with a bone bruise in his right shoulder, nearly a week after appearing to injure himself in a Cactus League game. Chicago general manager Jed Hoyer said Jimenez would be shut down for at least three weeks.
"He'll be a little late for the season," Hoyer told MLB.com. "All in all, we feel like it's pretty good news."
The 20-year-old had been sidelined after making an awkward throw home during the Cubs game on March 14. Hoyer said the outfielder had been experiencing shoulder soreness even before that, and he might have changed his throwing mechanics, which led to the bruising.
"That [throw] sort of pushed things over the edge," the Cubs GM told the site.
MLB.com's No. 13 overall prospect enjoyed an All-Star season with Class A South Bend in 2016. The Dominican Republic native was named Midwest League MVP after hitting .329/.369/.532 with 14 homers, 81 RBIs and circuit-best 40 doubles in 112 games.
The Cubs invited Jimenez to Spring Training and he responded by hitting .321 with two home runs and four RBIs in 16 Cactus League games.
"He had some really good at-bats and we thought he played great," Hoyer told the site. "It's a shame he'll start the season a little late, but that's when you remember it's a five-month season.
He obviously opened a lot of eyes this spring. He played great, he carries himself so well. We'll get this right and get him back out there."