Chicago Cubs: Team has nothing but a question mark in the ninth
Technically, Brandon Morrow holds the ninth-inning duties for the Chicago Cubs heading into next season. The only problem? The oft-injured right-hander is just that – injured.
Early reports indicate Morrow could miss the first month or more as he rehabs from offseason right elbow surgery, once again leaving Joe Maddon‘s club without a closer. When he’s healthy, Morrow represents one of the better shutdown arms in baseball. The problem, though, is that he’s rarely healthy over the course of an entire season.
Since 2012, he’s made more than 30 appearances two times – back in 2017 as the Los Angeles’ Dodgers late-inning fireman ahead of closer Kenley Jansen and last year with the Cubs. Chicago picked him up that offseason, handing him the ninth-inning job heading into 2018.
He was lights-out, pitching to a 1.47 ERA, 295 ERA+ and 1.076 WHIP for the North Siders before once again falling victim to the injury bug and missing the entire second half. So, while he’s definitely got the stuff – he’s about as far from a sure thing as possible when it comes to health.