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The bullpen has been good and likely

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stays good http://www.nationalsfanproshop.com/authentic-matt-adams-jersey , but who’s the ninth-inning guy?"WhiteFanposts Fanshots Sections Chicago Cubs recapsChicago Cubs minor leaguesChicago Cubs essaysChicago Cubs game threadsWrigley Field renovationsFull archiveLibrary Bleed Cubbie Blue Community GuidelinesCurrent time in ChicagoBCB Specials & Site InfoWinter 2019 music threadsCubs StoriesScheduleRosterStatsYahoo Cubs newsYahoo Cubs team pageYahoo Cubs reportYahoo Cubs depth chartYahoo Cubs transactionsYahoo Cubs photosOdds Shop About Masthead Community Guidelines StubHub 鉁旵hicago Cubs essaysChicago Cubs spring trainingPedro Strop might miss Opening Day. If so, who’s the Cubs’ closer?New,102commentsThe bullpen has been good and likely stays good, but who’s the ninth-inning guy?CDTShareTweetShareSharePedro Strop might miss Opening Day. If so, who’s the Cubs’ closer?Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY SportsBrandon Morrow, who was signed to a two-year deal (with a third-year option) to be the Cubs’ closer beginning in 2018, won’t be ready for Opening Day. He hasn’t thrown a single pitch in spring training and early May is the best-case scenario.Pedro Strop, who closed in Morrow’s absence in 2018 and did very well at that, was slated to be the closer beginning the 2019 season, but... uh-oh...Now. Maybe this is no big deal. As noted by Patrick Mooney http://www.nationalsfanproshop.com/authentic-matt-adams-jersey , this mild hamstring strain is not on the same leg Strop injured running the bases last September in Washington. And, often teams act with an abundance of caution during spring training, not putting pitchers into meaningless games if they have minor injuries. Joe Maddon’s quote, “It’s something we caught quickly. I can’t emphasize enough – it doesn’t look bad. But you don’t push a guy like that right now,” would seem to indicate that maybe this would be a “day-to-day” thing if it were the regular season, but since it’s not, they can let him rest for a couple of weeks.People get the impression that the Cubs’ bullpen wasn’t any good last year because of the injuries to Morrow and Strop and the ineffectiveness of Brandon Kintzler and others. In reality, though, the Cubs pen was quite good overall. They posted a 3.35 ERA, best in the National League Trea Turner Jersey , had 46 saves and 19 blown saves (71 percent, second-best in the N.L.), allowed 29 percent of inherited runners to score (fifth-best in the N.L.), and allowed just 51 home runs, fewest of any pen in the major leagues in 2018.So despite lacking a traditional, 95+ closer for much of 2018, there was nothing wrong with the Cubs’ pen.They will miss Strop, though, if he’s not available Opening Day.There are a few choices for closer in the absence of Strop and Morrow.Carl Edwards Jr.CJ has looked good this spring with his new Kenley Jansen-style motion in which he hesitates with his front leg before pitching. He’s always seemed to be a closer-in-waiting. All he needs to do is cut down on the walks (5.5 per nine innings in 2018, 4.9 career).Brad BrachBrach has closed before http://www.nationalsfanproshop.com/authentic-matt-adams-jersey , for the Orioles in 2017 and 2018. He’s got 33 career saves. However, he’s been slowed by a bout of mononucleosis this spring and might wind up also starting the year on the injured list.Steve CishekAnother pitcher with closing experience, he’s had two 30-save seasons in his career (Marlins, 2013 and 2014) and had 25 saves for the 2016 Mariners. His funky sidearm motion and lack of velocity aren’t traditional “closer” traits, but he does a good job of getting guys out.Brandon KintzlerKintzler, as noted above, was ineffective last year. He’s made four appearances this spring. Three were pretty good, one was awful. Kintzler closed for the Twins in 2016 and 2017 and in 2017, posted 28 saves with only four blown saves through the end of July, which is how he got himself traded to the Nationals that year. He’s a ground-ball pitcher and is most effective getting outs that way.Then there’s the non-traditional idea of Dillon Maples Joe Blanton Jersey , who has a devastating slider... when he can get it over the plate. Maples has done that reasonably well this spring, throwing 4?innings with two walks and nine strikeouts. With the current uncertainty regarding Strop, Brach and others, Maples has a chance to make the Opening Day roster.Who would you choose to close Cubs games starting March 28 in Texas if Pedro’s not available? So yesterday wasn’t great for Chris Sale. Here’s hoping things go better for Nathan Eovaldi in his first start of the season. Plus a look at Xander Bogaerts’ future with the Red Sox."WhiteFanposts Fanshots Red Sox StoriesScheduleRosterStatsYahoo Red Sox NewsYahoo Red Sox Team PageYahoo Red Sox ReportYahoo Red Sox Depth ChartYahoo Red Sox TransactionsYahoo Red Sox PhotosOdds About Masthead Community Guidelines StubHub 鉁昍ed Sox Daily LinksDaily Red Sox Links: Chris Sale, Nathan Eovaldi, Xander BogaertsSo yesterday wasn’t great for Chris Sale. Here’s hoping things go better for Nathan Eovaldi in his first start of the season. Plus a look at Xander Bogaerts’ future with the Red Sox. EDTShareTweetShareShareDaily Red Sox Links: Chris Sale, Nathan Eovaldi, Xander BogaertsJoe Nicholson-USA TODAY SportsChris Sale did not have the greatest Opening Day start, allowing seven runs across three innings. Thankfully there is plenty of time for him to get back to normal. (Rob Bradford; WEEI)Sale’s struggles shouldn’t make Nathan Eovaldi any less confident about his own first start of the season. (Peter Abraham; Boston Globe)Signing extensions is all the rage right now. Hopefully the Red Sox will get the hint in relation to Xander Bogaerts. (Nick Goss; NBC Sports Boston)The Red Sox had a great 2018. What can past history for teams with such success tell us? (Alex Speier; Boston Globe)Sandy Leon has a fan in Alex Cora. (Chris Cotillo; MassLive)Dustin Pedroia and Steve Pearce should be back helping the Red Sox soon. (Chris Cotillo; MassLive)

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