Cubs players said they stand by the front office’s decision to give Addison Russell a second chance after he was accused of physically and mentally abusing his ex-wife.
“We’re human. He made a mistake,” reliever Pedro Strop said at Cubs Convention last month. “If he does the right thing, if he does whatever he needs to do, he’s going to be welcome to come back.”
Said outfielder Albert Almora: “We call Russell family, he’s a brother … From what we heard and communicating with Addison, the way he’s dealing with things, if he continues to do that, we’ll welcome him back with open arms. Let’s let him gain our trust again.”
But his teammates’ support doesn’t take away from the distraction they might face when Russell reports for spring training in Mesa, Arizona.