3 Cubs players who won't be on the roster by May
By Jake Misener
The finale between the Reds and Cubs was rained out on Wednesday and will be made up as part of a doubleheader in Cincinnati in September. That leaves Chicago at 2-3 heading into this weekend's matchup with the Texas Rangers at Wrigley, which is expected to feature much better weather than what we got for Opening Weekend.
Five games is a very, very small sample size - but the Cubs have an incredibly small margin for error if they're going to defy the odds and make the postseason. With that in mind, if guys aren't producing or even if they just need regular reps to stay sharp, we could see a lot of movement back-and-forth between Iowa and the Windy City.
Here are 3 guys who could find themselves in Des Moines or elsewhere before the calendar turns to May based on roster construction, production and finding that perfect balance on the big league club.
3 Cubs players who won't be on the roster by May: #3 - Nick Madrigal
A former first-round pick out of Oregon State, Nick Madrigal was supposed to be the centerpiece in the deal that sent Craig Kimbrel to the South Side. Instead, he's struggled to stay healthy and, even when on the field, hasn't lived up to expectations.
In 235 plate appearances with the Cubs, Madrigal has a 67 OPS+ and the bat-to-ball skills he'd shown his entire career prior to the trade seem to have evaporated into thin air. This winter, the team had him start taking reps at third base in hopes of at least adding some defensive versatility with the middle infield locked down by Dansby Swanson and Nico Hoerner and, while he's been serviceable there with the leather, he's still not hitting.
Again, it's been five games and, for all we know, he goes on a burner this weekend against the Rangers. But with Patrick Wisdom scorching hot, Miles Mastrobuoni hitting the ball hard and Edwin Rios adding some left-handed power to the mix, when Seiya Suzuki returns, Madrigal could very well be the odd man out here.