26-year-old Michel Báez Cruz, a Cuban professional baseball pitcher for the San Diego Padres of Major League Baseball, was born on January 21, 1996.
In the 2014/2015 Cuban National Series, Báez played for the Pinar del Ro Vegueros and the Mayabeque Huracanes. In December 2016, he signed a $3 million international free agency contract with the San Diego Padres.
Báez began his professional career with the Arizona League Padres in 2017, and after one start in which he allowed two runs in five innings while striking out seven batters, he was promoted to the Fort Wayne TinCaps, where he finished the season with a 6-2 record and 2.45 ERA in 58+23 innings pitched.
Following the 2017 season, Báez was rated as the Midwest League’s No. 4 prospect according to Baseball America. He also earned Honorable Mention Starting Pitcher honors on the 2017 Yahoo Sports All-Minor League Team.
Baez was ranked as the Padres’ No. 7 prospect according to MLB.com prior to the 2018 season. He spent the 2018 season with both the Lake Elsinore Storm and the San Antonio Missions, going 4-10 with a 3.69 ERA in 21 total starts between both teams.
On March 31, 2021, it was announced that Báez would require Tommy John surgery and miss the 2021 season. On April 1, he was placed on the 60-day injured list.