In addition to activating backup catcher Austin Romine, the Cubs made some transactions with their pitching staff on Wednesday. They have activated righty Jason Adam from the COVID-19 related injured list and have selected righty Shelby Miller from the alternate site at South Bend. In order to make room on the roster for those pitchers, both Adbert Alzolay and Brad Wieck have been optioned to the alternate site.
That’s not really a matter of performance, but is more about getting fresh arms back up to the big league roster and limiting Alzolay’s innings in what the Cubs hope will be his first full, healthy season. They’re able to do that because they gained an additional option on the righty due to the shortened 2020 season. Since the Cubs are off both Thursday and this coming Monday, they shouldn’t even need a fifth starter on the next turn through the rotation.
They may, however, need another long man after Alec Mills was pressed into action when Kyle Hendricks was scratched from Tuesday’s start at the last minute due to feeling under the weather. Miller may serve in that role as Mills transitions to the rotation for a while, or the former Cardinal could make a few starts. Both pitchers have proven versatile and can capably handle whatever comes their way.
As for Hendricks, he tested negative and is said to be feeling well so the Cubs are operating with an abundance of caution. The ace actually headed back to Chicago Thursday rather than remaining with the team for the finale in Milwaukee, which is not uncommon for pitchers who aren’t available. Expect him to take the hill in Chicago this weekend against the Braves.