Chicago Cubs infielder Nico Hoerner leaves game mid-AB with injury
Chicago Cubs fans are begging for some good news but the dark clouds still gather regularly over Wrigley. Today during his first rehab outing with South Bend, Nico Hoerner pulled himself out of the game after an awkward swing on an 1-0 pitch. He stated that he felt ‘tightness’ in the oblique that has kept him on the IL for the last few weeks.
This took place on the same day that Cubs’ homepage highlighted an article by Ryan Herrera entitled “Hoerner set to be everyday SS upon return”. Herrera mentions the incident and doesn’t speculate on whether this sets back his timeline for return or not.
Hoerner looks likely to pair with Nick Madrigal next year up the middle for the Cubs, giving manager David Ross a pair of high-contact bats, which is something the team hasn’t featured in some time. If Jed Hoyer can go out and add some power bats, the offense could take a big step forward as soon as next season.
It’s clear that the Cubs could definitely use him. The team recently dropped its franchise-worst 13th consecutive home game and, as Rick Sutcliffe pointed out over the weekend on Marquee, the only time you feel like Chicago has even half a chance to win is when Kyle Hendricks is on the mound.
How far our Chicago Cubs have fallen
Since late July the Cubs have gone through a transformation that leaves them virtually unrecognizable to most fans. They have also lost 17 of twenty games in August – which is good for a .150 winning percentage for those of you doing the math at home.
This was the team, you may remember, that won the division in the COVID-shortened season of 2020. But that team is long gone. If and when Hoerner makes it back this year, he will hopefully breathe some life into this lineup and pick up where he left off at the dish, where he was hitting .313/.388/.388 prior to his injury. It would be a very welcome addition, to say the least.
Hoerner’s early departure from the South Bend game appeared to come on a swing at a ball in the dirt. The report is he will be reassessed and it is hoped that this won’t slow down his rehab.
Assuming he can rejoin the North Siders this season, he will play as the everyday shortstop. There has also been some talk of him getting a tryout in center field. Either way, he can’t be added to this roster soon enough.