Looking at the current Chicago Cubs’ roster, there isn’t a hole that needs to be covered up and fixed with an addition. Of course, we’re only in week two of a 162 game season — so that will change. The only thing that might stick out right at this point could be the bullpen.
After a hot start by everyone in the pen, there have been a few that have fallen off in some recent games. Maybe it is because of too much early work or maybe just not having their pitches hitting their spot. Whatever the case may be, the pen is too important to let struggle for too long.
The Cubs bullpen has faced a few injuries to start the season, namely Justin Grimm and Neil Ramirez. Dallas Beeler started the season on the disabled list – when he could return is unknown at this point, but how much of a contribution can the Cubs count on is even more of an unknown.
During his spring performances, Edwards flashed some signs of what the Chicago Cubs can expect when he does get his call up. While it was a limited showing, he took advantage of what time he did have. He appeared in three games and pitched three full innings surrendering just two hits and striking out two. Hitters who Edwards faced held an average of only .182.
“I like this kid a lot,” Maddon said. “Great delivery. Easy delivery. The ball out of the hand is exceptional. Real nice curveball. He’s just learning his craft, but he was very impressive.” Joe Maddon – via Patrick Mooney CSNChicago.com
He has a good fastball that can reach the mid-90’s and a secondary pitch that consists of a 12-6 curve which generates a fair amount of swing and misses. I’m sure he’d like to be a starter, but at the point for Edwards it might be best for him to get his feet wet while throwing out of the pen. It worked for Jeff Samardzija and many others, maybe it would be the best approach for him as well.
Edwards may not be a call up anytime soon, but I think it will happen at some point this year. Right now he’s still working his craft in Tennessee. He’s 0-1 in four games with a 3.52 ERA and 10 K’s.
Before him, the Cubs will likely be able to add Tsuyoshi Wada to the bullpen first. Still working his way back from injury with extended spring training in Iowa – Wada is 0-1 with a 2.70 ERA in two starts.
Either way the bullpen will get help, but I think Edwards will be a valuable addition when he does get his call.