June 22 (UPI) -- Chicago Cubs manager David Ross gave a brief lecture to Javier Baez and benched him during a recent loss to the Cleveland Indians after the All-Star shortstop committed a brutal base-running blunder.
The sequence occurred in the bottom of the fourth inning of the 4-0 shutout Monday at Wrigley Field in Chicago.
"I blame it on myself," Baez told reporters. "I lost the count of the outs. We talked about it. We're on the same page. I'll be there [Tuesday] to help the team."
Cubs outfielder Kris Bryant walked in the first at-bat of the half inning, which brought Baez to the plate. The Cubs shortstop hit an 0-1 Aaron Civale fastball to third baseman Jose Ramirez. Ramirez threw to second base to get Bryant out. Baez stayed at first base.
Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo stepped in for the next at-bat. Rizzo fell behind 0-2 in the count. He then ripped into a 2-2 cutter for a fly ball to left field.
Baez sprinted off first base and rounded second base, thinking Rizzo's hit was about to result in the third out of the frame.
Indians left fielder Eddie Rosario immediately recognized the base-running blunder and tossed the ball into the infield. Indians shortstop Amed Rosario then threw to first baseman Bobby Bradley for the final out of the inning.
Baez shrugged off the mistake as he walked into the Cubs dugout. A TV camera caught Ross as he approached Baez after the play. Ross talked to the shortstop and pulled him out of the game. Baez walked back into the clubhouse.
Sergio Alcantara played shortstop for the Cubs for the final five innings.
"It did not feel good to take Javy out of the game," Ross told reporters. "I never feel comfortable doing that at all.
"That's a pit in my stomach and it was in my stomach the entire game."
Baez went 0 for 2 in the loss. He is hitting .226 with 16 home runs and 44 RBIs this season. The eight-year veteran leads MLB with 95 strikeouts in 64 games.
Baez hit .203 with eight home runs and 24 RBIs in 59 games last season.
Bradley and utility man Josh Naylor each homered in the Indians victory. Civale allowed three hits and 4 2/3 scoreless innings, but was not on the record for a decision.
The Cubs (40-33) host the Indians (40-30) at 8:05 p.m. EDT Tuesday at Wrigley Field.