Time for Javy Baez to be the Cubs’ full-time second baseman

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(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

The answer to every question, every debate, every mere suggestion is that the Cubs won the World Series.

Why did Joe Maddon overuse closer Aroldis Chapman against the Indians?

The Cubs won the World Series.

Did Miguel Montero deserve to play more in the postseason, as he suggested afterward?

The Cubs won the World Series.

What’s the square root of pi?

The Cubs won the World Series.

The team just finished hosting the lovefest known as the Cubs Convention, which, if you went, left you with a sugar buzz that will last weeks. Far be it from me to bring you down a few thousand feet, but I’m not the one who recently laid out a possible lineup for the 2017 season. Maddon did. In January.

So one more question:

Doesn’t Javy Baez deserve to be the Cubs’ everyday second baseman?

Before you say anything, I know the answer: The Cubs won the World Series.

But Baez was phenomenal in the postseason, and the nation got to see what most of us saw in the regular season — that he’s one of the best infielders in baseball. There are players who would sell their souls to have his footwork and his hands. He’s a perennial Gold Glove waiting to happen, provided he has, you know, a position.

Imagine an infield of Kris Bryant at third, Addison Russell at shortstop, Baez at second and Anthony Rizzo at first base. So good it’s silly.

But Maddon sees things differently, at least for now. To be fair, Picasso saw things differently too. Maybe this is Maddon’s Cubbie Blue Period. The lineup he recently mentioned to reporters had Ben Zobrist batting fourth and presumably playing second base. Baez wasn’t among the starters, though Maddon made it clear in word and action last season that you don’t have to have a permanent spot to get a lot of at-bats. And he has certainly left open the possibility that Baez will take over at second base.

But why is this even a question? Baez deserves to be an everyday player at second. More than that, the Cubs should put the best lineup on the field, and any lineup without Baez’ glove involved is not the best.

Maddon can say it doesn’t matter, can, indeed, rationalize it by saying his mixing and matching gives the Cubs more lineup flexibility and more rest. He can say it doesn’t matter because the Cubs won the World Series. But it does matter. It matters to athletes. It has mattered to athletes forever. Players want to play. Players want to start.

Baez didn’t sound too concerned at the convention.

“I already have a ring,’’ he said. “There’s nothing to be worried about. We have to see how everything goes.’’

There are a couple of things going on here. Zobrist is a veteran, a highly paid player who deserves respect and at-bats. But not at Baez’ expense.

Zobrist, 35, hit .272 with 18 home runs and 76 runs batted in in 523 at-bats last season.

Baez, 24, hit .273 with 14 homers and 59 RBI in 421 at-bats.

He doesn’t walk nearly as much as Zobrist does, and he strikes out more.

But the ability to play second base isn’t even close.

For some reason, Baez doesn’t get the same treatment as several of the other young Cubs. Bryant was moved around last season because of injuries to other players, but he’s the Cubs’ third baseman, no questions asked. Don’t even bother suggesting that Russell play any other position than shortstop. Nobody notices his batting average (.238) or his strikeouts (135), but everybody can tell you about his 21 home runs and 95 RBI.

But Baez? He’s the guy who was asked, oddly, to bunt with two strikes and the game tied in the ninth inning of Game 7 of the World Series. Yes, he had been struggling at the plate, but what other player would have been asked to do that? Baez struck out on a foul ball.

I thought his ascension into the regular lineup was a no-brainer after he starred in the National League Division Series and the NLCS. Apparently, I thought wrong.

The understanding in everything Maddon does is that he knows better, that his ability to strategize is more important than, say, Baez’ ability to play a wonderful second base. He needs to have players at his disposal.

But the love was flowing at the Cubs Convention, and any discussion with even a hint of disagreement to it was for another time.

By the way, the Cubs won the World Series.

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