Chicago Cubs News: Patrick Wisdom to open the season on IL as roster decisions loom

Bench decisions are the focus for the Cubs this weekend.

Mar 9, 2024; Mesa, Arizona, USA; Chicago Cubs infielder Patrick Wisdom (16) warms up before a spring
Mar 9, 2024; Mesa, Arizona, USA; Chicago Cubs infielder Patrick Wisdom (16) warms up before a spring / Allan Henry-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Cubs continue to map out their Opening Day roster with the team set to start the regular season next Thursday against the Texas Rangers.

Craig Counsell revealed on Thursday that the Cubs' starting rotation to open the season will be Justin Steele, Kyle Hendricks, Shota Imanaga, Jordan Wicks, and Javier Assad. Notably, the rotation does not include Jameson Taillon, who has been sidelined for most of Spring Training with a back injury.

Counsell is holding out hope to have Taillon back in the rotation by mid-April.

The assumption is that Taillon will open the season on the 15-day IL. Hayden Wesneski may be the arm to keep in mind as the replacement for Taillon on the Opening Day roster. Wesneski could open the season in the bullpen and then be optioned to Triple-A to resume work as a starting pitcher once Taillon is healthy.

The impact of Patrick Wisdom missing the start of the Chicago Cubs season.

Wisdom opening the season on the IL shouldn't be a complete surprise considering the last update the Cubs provided.

Wisdom is an interesting spot with the Cubs' roster considering the inclusion of Garrett Cooper and Dominic Smith in Spring Training.

It's worth noting that Friday was the deadline for Cooper to inform the Cubs of his intention to opt out of his minor-league deal ahead of Opening Day. The Cubs would have had until Sunday to either trade/release Cooper or add him to the 40-man roster had he informed the team of his intent to opt-out.

While Cooper did not out of his minor-league deal with the Cubs, Smith did.

Smith opting out of his deal with the Cubs is a likely sign that Cooper will indeed be on the Opening Day roster for the Cubs.

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