Chicago Cubs: Which pitchers might we see once rosters expand?

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Cubs
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Chicago Cubs: Much-needed left-hander reinforcements

This offseason, the Cubs signed Drew Smyly to a two-year, $10 million contract. They did this despite knowing full well he would miss at least most of this season coming back from Tommy John surgery. The hope was that his recovery would go well enough that Smyly would be ready to pitch a little bit at the end of this season. Then, he would hopefully be able to compete for a spot in the 2019 rotation.

Smyly pitched for the Rays from 2014 to 2017 until he suffered the injury that prompted Tommy John surgery. So Joe Maddon and Jim Hickey know him well from their time together in Tampa Bay.

The good news is Smyly’s recovery has gone almost exactly as scripted. Right now he would like to reduce the amount of time he needs to recover in between pitching sessions.

Smyly will get the call this September assuming he is healthy enough. He wants to pitch this season. And the Cubs want to see him pitch this season. Then we can begin to get a sense of what we have in him for next year’s pitching staff. But they don’t want to rush him and then have him suffer a setback.

Smyly has been on the 60-day disabled list since he signed with the Cubs. So the front office will need to make room to add him to the 40-man.