This Wednesday is the first day Willson Contreras (foot) can be activated from the Injured List, and it just so happens that the guy he pretty much always catches, Jon Lester, is scheduled to go that day.
But could Contreras actually be ready to go? The Cubs said all along that he shouldn’t need much more than the minimum IL stint, even as they acquired another catcher in Martin Maldonado. Well, Contreras is really trying to stick to that timeline:
Contreras (foot) said he’s healthy and at full strength. Preparing to catch Lester on Wednesday.
— Gordon Wittenmyer (@GDubCub) July 22, 2019
Willson Contreras (foot) very hopeful to be activated Wed. Thinks he’ll take BP tomorrow
— Jesse Rogers (@ESPNChiCubs) July 22, 2019
So I suppose we’ll see tomorrow, with fingers crossed.
If and when Contreras returns, the Cubs will have a roster move to make. The Cubs *could* simply option Victor Caratini back to AAA Iowa, but that seems a really tough road to travel when the guy has been so good, and also happens to be the best bat on the bench on any given day. Are the Cubs prepared to finally do something about Daniel Descalso (DFA or Injured List)? Could they option David Bote for a bit? Or Albert Almora? Or Addison Russell? It’s not as if the Cubs don’t have plenty of options that wouldn’t exactly sting right now.
In the meantime, though, you can presume there’s a lot more going on in the background with respect to the looming Trade Deadline, and there might be some coordination with other moves as Contreras returns – be it Wednesday or later.