Jon Lester will make his Cactus League debut Tuesday, followed by Kyle Hendricks on Wednesday. Those will be the first two starts by surefire members of the rotation, but don’t expect anything more than seriously abbreviated efforts. It may be a while before we see the other two primary starters, as José Quintana has been experiencing flu-like symptoms and Yu Darvish is slated to throw live BP during Monday’s workout.
Darvish & Kimbrel live BP Monday, Lester & Hendricks make exhibition debuts Tuesday and Wednesday. Q latest victim of flu
— Mark Gonzales (@MDGonzales) February 23, 2020
Also scheduled to throw is Craig Kimbrel, who’s being brought along slowly after last year’s debacle. The Cubs are taking no chances with their closer, nor should they when he’s actually got all of spring training to build up to season readiness.
The truncated nature of these early outings makes it difficult to take away anything of value, but there are still some trends you’ll want to monitor as the exhibition season progresses. The results aren’t as important right now, so it’s all about dialing in certain pitches and building stamina steadily. Those things should become a little more apparent when the starters get into their third turn and beyond, though seeing some big radar readings from Darvish right out of the gate would be a great sign.
Provided, that is, Marquee’s velo readings are fixed soon.