Chicago Cubs: Is it too early to worry about the 2020 bullpen?

(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
(Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Cubs
(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /

Chicago Cubs Should the Cubs buy out the final year of Morrow’s contract?

Before the 2018 season the Cubs signed Brandon Morrow to a two-year deal. When Morrow was healthy he pitched well for the Cubs. He had a 1.47 ERA and 2.97 FIP in 35 appearances covering 30 2/3 innings. Morrow recorded 50 strikeouts and walked just nine batters. Perhaps most importantly he had 22 saves in 24 opportunities.

Unfortunately, he spent a large portion of last season on the disabled list. In June he was placed on the disabled list with back tightness after comically injuring himself taking off his pants. A month later he was back on the disabled list with a second injury that ended his season.

This November, Morrow had surgery on his right elbow that was described as a clean up procedure. Recovering from this surgery is going to cause him to not be ready for the beginning of the season.

The right-hander’s option for next season is at an increased salary of $12 million. However, his contract also has a $3 million buyout. So after this season the Cubs can either pay Morrow $3 million not to pitch for them or pay him $9 million more to continue to be a part of their bullpen.

As the free agent market continues to collapse, that $9 million may be too steep a price to pay – especially for a guy you can’t count on health-wise.