The Cubs reduced their spring roster yet again with five more moves Wednesday, bringing the total to 39 remaining. Among those are 21 pitchers (3 non-roster invitees), four catchers (2 NRIs), eight infielders (2 NRIs) and six outfielders (1 NRI). That means there are just 13 more players to trim before setting the 26 who will be heading north, maybe, when camp breaks.
Right-handed pitcher James Norwood was optioned to Triple-A Iowa, while righties Dakota Mekkes and Ben Taylor were assigned to minor league camp. Lefties Wyatt Short and Danny Hultzen were likewise assigned to the minors.
As for that early comment about maybe heading north, MLB has scheduled a league-wide conference call for Friday to address Covid-19 concerns. ESPN’s Jeff Passan tweeted that they’re still committed to playing spring and regular-season games in front of actual fans, but the trend across major sports leagues is leaning the other direction.
MLB has a league-wide conference call scheduled for Friday, sources told ESPN. Considering how things in other leagues are changing seemingly by the hour, baseball’s tack could be different. One thing baseball has that others don’t: time, as opening day isn’t until March 26.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) March 12, 2020
The Mariners are almost certainly going to playing a number of “home” games elsewhere, and they may not be the only ones by the time the season starts. We will know more about this by Friday, with the potential for this incredibly fluid situation to change by the hour in the meantime.