The Cubs bullpen is one of the strongest areas of the team. Perhaps the strongest.
Unfortunately, bullpens can be kind of unpredictable from year to year. Guys can be incredibly effective one year and brutal the next.
And then, of course, injuries can come into play.
Yesterday, the Cubs placed a key member of the bullpen — RHP Justin Grimm — on the 15-day disabled list with right forearm inflammation.
Joe Maddon told Patrick Mooney that he doesn’t think the injury is too serious. But we’ll see. Anytime I hear “forearm,” I think “elbow.”
Grimm is an underrated piece to the Cubs ‘pen. To replace him on the roster, the Cubs called up familiar face Brian Schlitter, in whom I don’t have a lot of confidence right now.
Schlitter had a rough debut in yesterday’s loss to the Rockies, giving up two runs, three hits and a walk in one inning of work.
Luckily the Cubs have some depth among their relievers. Pedro Strop, Neil Ramirez, Hector Rondon and hopefully Jason Motte should be solid. Phil Coke has also looked excellent so far (small sample size, aside).
But I do hope Grimm makes it back soon.
* Welington Castillo starting yesterday meant the Cubs had all three catchers on the roster start in the first three games of the season. Have to wonder how much longer Castillo will be around, but then again, I figured he’d be gone by now. He went 0-for-3 with a walk in Friday’s game.
* The minor-league season kicked off on Thursday night. Through two games, Kris Bryant is 1-for-7 with an RBI. Iowa has lost both of its games.
* Iowa has been without Javier Baez, who is taking a leave of absence after his sister, Noely, passed away this week. Javy was very close with his sister, who was born with spina bifida. Carrie Muskat wrote about their relationship back in 2013.