You would think that winning the World Series would let a guy take the winter off. But, after the season that Jason Heyward had, that hasn’t been the case.
Despite the team’s success in 2016, Heyward struggled during the first year of his new contract in Chicago. Offensively, he failed to live up to the lofty expectations levied upon a player receiving well over $100 million. His defense, baserunning, and leadership, though, proved to be the kinds of tools that made him a valuable part of a team that ended the Cubs’ World Series drought.
Over the winter, Heyward has set up shop in Mesa, Arizona, the Spring Training home of the Cubs, in order to work on his swing. A second video has surfaced of Heyward, hard at work developing a new approach at the plate.
Cubs fans can be tough, and the desire to win can bring out the worst in some. Heyward undoubtably had a rough time transitioning into a new environment, especially when he began to struggle. To see his hard work and determination, though, will only buy him the love and dedication of a fan-base known for loving the players that put themselves on the line for our city.
Athletes are looked up to by young fans and players of their sport. Jason Heyward is demonstrating to young Cubs fans that he is willing to put in the work to be the star the Cubs are paying for. In turn, he deserves the respect and support of the fans.
It’s hard not to root for Jason Heyward. After a weak first season in Chicago, every indication points to a bounce-back year in 2017, and a larger role for a Cubs team that should continue its dominance of the National League.