Chicago Cubs: Fifth spot going to be locked down soon

Tyler Chatwood, Chicago Cubs (Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images)
Tyler Chatwood, Chicago Cubs (Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images) /

The Chicago Cubs are ready to lock down the fifth spot soon. Alec Mills, Tyler Chatwood and Adbert Alzolay will start the first three games. These three will likely be where the next starter comes from, barring a trade.

The Chicago Cubs will have the fifth starter soon, as the three guys are up for the role. Alec Mills, Tyler Chatwood and Adbert Alzolay will claim the fifth spot soon. Chatwood is the pitcher I like best. He’s got the best stuff. His fastball is in the 95th percentile, and his curve is in the 99th percentile (h/t Sara Sanchez, Bleed Cubbie Blue.) 

And his sinker is as dominant as his fastball. Can you imagine hanging in there against a fastball, and then it dips off the table? In September of 2019, the fastball was at 96.94 mph. The sinker? 96.02 mph. Not much a difference there. Needless to say, his curve, sinker and fastball are elite when he throws them right. That’s the issue. When he can control it? He’s good. When he can’t? Yikes.

The Cubs Alec Mills is the second one I’m fancy on. He throws a 90 mph four-seam fastball and mixes it with an 88-90 mph sinker. He also throws a changeup and a curve, giving him a four-pitch mix (He also throws a slider.)  He had a good streak of four starts, finishing with a September 27 start. He struck out nine and lowered his ERA to 2.75.

In 20 innings pitched is his starts, he threw a 2.70 with a K/9 of 11.7. Overall in starts and relief, he threw a 2.75 ERA and lowered his walk total to 2.8. Night and day from his first shot in Chicago. He pitched double the innings, lowered his ERA by 1.25 (4.00 to 2.75,) and lowered his walk total from 3.5 to 2.8 BB/9.

He had a FIP of 4.19, implying he had been a little lucky. But given his ERA was slightly lower, I’d take it. With a starter FIP of 3.56, I’ll take it every day. Given the experience with Chatwood and Mills, it’s a crapshoot who gets it. But there’s one more option that’s left.

Next. Now is the time to dangle Quintana. dark

The Chicago Cubs Adbert Alzolay is an enigma wrapped in…well; you know where I’m going with this. He’s unknown.  Back after his first relief appearance and his two starts, he got shelled. He allowed 6.75 HR/9, and he made one relief appearance before getting sidelined to ‘bicep soreness.’ He’s talented, but injury issues have hampered throughout his entire career.

Like I said before, we’re going to have the fifth starter…and soon. Only who is it going to be? Pssst…Chatwood. #TeamChatwood