Chicago Cubs: Craig Kimbrel hopes for better days ahead
The Chicago Cubs Craig Kimbrel hopes for betters day ahead as he battled a sore knee and was saddled with no excuses.
The Chicago Cubs Craig Kimbrel battled a sore knee and elbow inflammation, but he had no excuses for it. He was content with it. This year, he’d like to match the All-Star pitcher he was accustomed to. The 7x All-Star wants to get back to he was. And that’s not missing a spring training, no matter the cost (Subscription required.)
Kimbrel signed on June 7, well after spring training. He had a myriad of injuries, including a sore knee and an inflamed elbow. He managed his first save on June 27. But it wasn’t as easy as it once was. None of them were. He blew a couple of four-run leads which don’t count as saves. Shame on you, Kimbrel.
Tommy Hottovy said this, which is very fitting.
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"“You get those in spring training, and you’re able to work through them and manage. When you’re in the middle of a season and pennant race, it’s harder to do that. You’re trying to work through things you probably shouldn’t be. Trying to just get through it and tough it out because he wants to get out there as a competitor.”"
Jon Lester, entering his sixth season of spring training, said there is no excuse for not having any sort. There were many different factors, and Lester didn’t fare as well his first season.
"“I don’t care what you do in the offseason, that’s why you have spring training,” Lester said. “I don’t care how many bullpens he threw, how many BPs, this that and the other. His spring training went from six to seven weeks to 10 days. I tip my hat for what he was able to do for us. I’m excited for him.”"
He only blew three saves last season. However, it was the worst of his career. His fastball averaged 94.6 mph, his lowest since his rookie year. He’s getting older, but not ‘over the hill.’ His control would come and go. And his hard hit-rate? 50 percent. And his nine home runs were two more than a season previously. Needless to say, it was a rough season.
"“Terrible is kind of an understatement for what I felt like I did last year,” Kimbrel said."
It was terrible. That you know, but Kimbrel will turn it around. And if he doesn’t? He could be looking for a new job here real soon.