With a minor injury to Dexter Fowler – Bryant could see time in the outfield
In Wednesday night’s loss to the Pirates, the Chicago Cubs had to deal with a minor injury to Dexter Fowler. Fowler left the game after two innings with tightness in his right groin. While it is doubtful he’ll need a trip to the disabled list, it is possible that he could miss a couple of games for precautionary reasons. If that is the case for Fowler then it could mean that the Chicago Cubs might try Kris Bryant in the outfield.
With an already limited bench due to injuries and carrying three catchers – the Cubs have better options to cover third base then they do for center field. Chris Coghlan or Jorge Soler could slide over easily enough to man center – meaning that Bryant would be able to take the open corner outfield spot.
Ultimately it could come down to who is the better option between Jonathan Herrera and Chris Denorfia to cover the open position. If there was a time to test how well Bryant would do with a full game in the outfield – now may be as good of a time as any.
PNC Park may not be the ideal place to test Bryant out though with the large gap in left-center field, so the possibility of this happening in Thursday’s game might be slim unless Joe Maddon wants to try Bryant in right and slide Soler to the middle of the outfield.
Arismendy Alcantara was supposed to be the solution to this outfield problem if it were to ever come up, but with his poor start at the plate batting a mere .077 – he needed to be sent down to make way for Addison Russell, but he also needed to get some consistent playing time to work on his mechanics and get his confidence back that he had last year when he was called up to Chicago.
Even if Fowler does miss two or three games – there are options for the Cubs to play with, but I still see this as a good time to try Bryant out in the outfield. As long as him playing in the outfield doesn’t mess up his approach at the plate then I say go for it.