The Chicago Cubs swept the third-place Milwaukee Brewers at Wrigley this weekend and are riding high after having extended their lead over the St. Louis Cardinals to 1.5 games. This is certainly cause to put a spring in their step, but some Cubs have a bigger strut than others.
Let’s take a look at the top five Cubs players in terms of swag factor. While two of my top five won’t come as a surprise to anyone who follows the Cubs, new trade deadline additions to the team have shaken up the standings.
5. Cole Hamels, SP
While Hamels’ nickname of “Hollywood” probably comes from his movie-star good looks, it’s the kind of nickname only a true ace of swag would have.
The veteran southpaw’s World Series championship and position atop the active strikeouts leaderboard also give him good cause to take the hill with an attitude.
However, the main reason for Hamels’ ranking as a Cubs swag leader is for having the stones to make fun of Brewers fans after pitching in a losing effort against the Crew.
Cole Hamels, not feeling the rivalry after a walk-off loss to the #Brewers: "When you have majority #Cubs fans in the stands, I don’t know if that’s a rivalry yet. I’ve been in rivalries. They’re not going to like me for the comment, but you can look at the ticket sales."
— Patrick Mooney (@PJ_Mooney) September 3, 2018
4. Nicholas Castellanos, OF
Castellanos, who joined the Northsiders following a deadline trade with the Detroit Tigers, has already distinguished himself with screaming line drives and aggressive baserunning.
The new Cub is also known for his distinctive fashion sense, wearing a rubber ducky tank top for interviews with the media. When asked about the impression his shirt makes on his teammates, he gives an answer dripping with swag: “It’s working.”
His habit of wearing a jersey unbuttoned without an undershirt has also made a big impression on the faithful:
This open shirt no undershirt look Castellanos is rocking is incredible 👀🔥 pic.twitter.com/VHIq28UquT
— Sara Sanchez ⚾ (@BCB_Sara) August 4, 2019
3. Jason Heyward, OF
J-Hey’s low-key, effortless cool is the reason he ranks so highly on this very unofficial list.
First of all, this guy fucks.
Question: "After a long stretch of games without a day off and a really hot weekend, what do you do on your day off to rest up?"
Heyward, smiling: "None of your damn business."
— Tony Andracki (@TonyAndracki23) July 1, 2018
He’s also living the dream:
JHey celebrating the sweep in style on the lake, via his IG (jheylove22) pic.twitter.com/Wi27JOEBPt
— Cubs Insider (@realcubsinsider) August 4, 2019
Last but not least, Heyward had the sexiest Jon Lester costume for the team’s “Dress Like Lester” themed road trip (photo via his IG story).
2. Pedro Strop, RP
Strop wears his hat to the left and his attitude on his sleeve. He has become a fan favorite for his animation after getting big strikeouts.
Strop has swag on the mound but can bring his flair to the outfield if the need arises during an extra-innings marathon:
He also has his own clothing line for us poor bastards who need help to be as cool as him.
1. Javier Báez, SS
Javy’s swag emanates from his baseball philosophy of “get better, have fun.” His enjoyment of the game and self-confidence drives the haters absolutely wild.
You can’t even dream of blowing bubbles while hitting bombs, and El Mago knows it:
Put it in a museum. pic.twitter.com/60ATYhKZrX
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) October 19, 2017
The photo may not have ended up in a museum, but it did become a book cover.
Other players might flip their bats to celebrate a home run, but Javy will hang on to the bat and let out a primal scream before dropping it to the ground.
— Bleacher Nation (@BleacherNation) September 18, 2018
See here for a great breakdown by Sara Sanchez of Bleed Cubbie Blue that details how much attitude Báez brings to his home run celebrations.
While Javy did not win NL MVP last year, he’ll always be the MVP of swag.
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