Chicago Cubs: Signing of Brandon Morrow may be steal of the offseason
By Logan Whaley
Changing the narrative in Los Angeles
Returning from injury, Morrow was surprisingly himself. In 45 games, all out of the pen, the right-hander finished 6-0 with a remarkable 2.06 ERA, posting a 1.7 WAR. Consequently, Morrow did post the third-best FIP at 1.55 among relievers who pitched at least 40 innings, according to Fangraphs.
Fans will remember the workhorse performance he ground out for the Dodgers. It is important to realize that throughout the postseason last year, Morrow pitched 13 2/3 innings in the team’s 15 total games. It included an appearance in all seven World Series games.
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Heading into 2018, the Chicago Cubs were in the market for a closer. Brandon Morrow is now their guy. Signed at a relative bargain (2 years/$21 million) – he could wind up as one of the steals of the winter.
The Cubs have a relatively stable bullpen moving forward into the new season. The likes of Pedro Strop, Justin Wilson and Carl Edwards should have Cubs fans hopeful for a strong season from the relief corps.
Thus, before agreeing with Morrow, Edwards projected to be “the guy.” Now, after inking that two-year deal, Morrow will be the Cubs’ ninth inning guy.
In 2017, Morrow rebounded nicely with the highest strikeout percentage of his career – at 29.4 percent. Additionally, he also walked only 5.3 percent of the batters he faced. Morrow has also displayed an increase in velocity. His fastball, for example, has reached 97.9 miles per hour. Even better are the reports out of Spring Training that he is hitting 98 mph.