Chicago Cubs: Team not panicking over injuries
It hardly comes as a surprise to hear the Cubs are keeping their eyes and ears open on the rumor mill. We’re talking about a team that boasts the best record in the National League – despite really having one of those stretches where they hit their stride.
"“You’ re always looking to upgrade,” Theo Epstein said. “When you have a competitive team, no matter how well your pen has pitched, there is always a desire to look around and see if you can tweak it or improve it. You are always cognizant that it is harder to address injuries after July 31.”"
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The injury he’s referencing? Closer Brandon Morrow, who’s on the shelf for right biceps inflammation. There are no indications this will be a long-term issue, but given his injury history and the heavy workload Cubs relievers have carried, adding depth to lessen the burden makes a lot of sense.
Morrow, for what it’s worth, has been lights-out in his first season as a big league closer. He carries a 1.4 WAR, 1.47 ERA and 296 ERA+ in 30 appearances this year. Essentially, when Joe Maddon gives the right-hander the ball, it’s game over for opponents.
But the injury isn’t guiding Epstein’s hand on the tiller as the deadline nears. Again, this is a guy who’s made a name as one of the best front office executives. More importantly, one who doesn’t make reactionary moves.
"“I don’t think the Morrow injury fundamentally changes how we look at things,” Epstein said. “Chavez filled a real need for us being a multiple-inning versatile pitcher who throws a lot of strikes and can execute a game plan. He can do a lot of things and is a real stabilizer and lifts the floor of our pitching staff quite a bit. Yes, we are certainly looking for ways to improve it.”"