Chicago Cubs: Four options to replace the injured Willson Contreras
The Chicago Cubs are waiting with bated breath for an update on Willson Contreras. In the meantime, here are some potential replacements.
Just days ago, some Chicago Cubs fans may have been a bit miffed by the brief rental of veteran backstop Martin Maldonado, but very few people were losing any sleep over swapping him for Tony Kemp trade deadline. Of course, the team seemed to be set with the likes of Willson Contreras and Victor Caratini, behind the dish. My, my, my… what a difference a couple days can make.
After going hitless in 11 at-bats over only four games while a Cub, Maldonado had a double and a run on Thursday and had a bomb, a walk, and two runs scored on Friday for the Astros. For good measure, he threw in another hit, run, and walk Saturday in a blowout. Oh, and he also caught a no-hitter. No big deal.
Meanwhile, Contreras suffered what appeared to be a pretty substantial hamstring injury in the Cubs’ win over Milwaukee at Wrigley Field Saturday. We won’t know more until he undergoes an MRI on Monday.
If you’ve followed the Cubs in recent years, you’ll remember that Contreras has had hamstring issues derail promising campaigns in the past. You’ll also remember that his right hamstring is the same one he injured two years ago against the Giants in the midst of an MVP-like tear. What this means, only medical personnel could speculate on, but it seems unlucky regardless.
In 86 games so far in 2019, Willson has put up a superb slash line of .277/.368/.531 with 19 home runs and 57 RBI, which isn’t a whole lot different than what he had done in 2017 when he went out. The semi-good news, if Contreras has to miss significant time: the offense is now deeper and should be able to absorb the loss of his bat with the addition of newcomer Nicholas Castellanos. The bad news: the Cubs don’t really have a ton of catching depth ready for the big leagues.
So, what will the Cubs do? Here are some options, which are now limited because of the fact the only trade deadline just passed.