Cubs fans have been rooting for Javier Baez since he was drafted with the Cubs' first pick in the 2011 draft, but Carrie Muskat posted a piece today that sheds light on another member of the Baez family that we should all root for, Javier's sister, Noely.
"[Christmas] is very, very special," said Baez, the Cubs' top prospect. "When my sister was born, doctors said she wouldn't last 20 minutes, that she wouldn't last from one room to another one. Last November, she turned 20. Every day is special."
Noely Baez has spina bifida, the most common permanently disabling birth defect in the United States. It literally means "split spine," and happens when the spinal column does not close all the way. Noely can't walk, but that's about the only thing she can't do.
The whole piece is well worth a read that sheds some light on the Baez family and where Javier came from.
This Christmas is even a bit more special for the Baez family since there was a frightening incident this past Fall:
This offseason, he was reminded once again how fragile life is. On Oct. 13, Baez tweeted, "Pray for my sister please." Noely had to be hospitalized.
"We thought we were going to lose her," Baez said.
His sister's lungs stopped functioning, and for three weeks, she was on a ventilator. The doctors finally decided to take the ventilator out.
"God put his hand on her," Baez said. "She stopped breathing. They said, 'We can't do anything else. We have to see how she'll react.'"
Noely pulled through and we hope that she'll have many more Christmases with her family. It's probably a more worthwhile thing for us to root for than for the Cubs to win 70 games.
Merry Christmas from us at Obstructed View. May your holiday celebrations be above replacement level.