Central Buffer, Injury Roster Moves Loom, Strop's Save, and Other Bullets

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Central Buffer, Injury Roster Moves Loom, Strop’s Save, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs

So many open tabs of long articles I want to read (usually non-baseball). This time of year, they reeeeaaally accumulate, because the flurry of rumors and news is so furious throughout the day and evening. Now there’s a baseball one up there, too, on the journey of Edwin Jackson. Gonna have to carve out some time today.

Until then …

  • The Cubs won yesterday, and all of the Brewers, Pirates, and Cardinals lost. So that was cool. There’s something very different feeling about a 2.5-game lead in the Central versus a 1.5-game lead. I think that might be the biggest mental one-game difference in my mind.
  • Also, random: the third place Pirates are 7.0 games behind the Cubs, the same as the third place Nationals are behind the Phillies in the East. The Nationals are a game under .500, and the Pirates are three over. Which team is supposed to be selling? (And the Nats just lost Stephen Strasburg to the DL again.)
  • You gotta figure unless BOTH Kris Bryant and Javy Baez are ready to return to action today (at least off the bench), we’re going to see a roster move. The best guess would be David Bote returning (he was not in Iowa’s lineup last night) and one of Baez or Bryant (probably Bryant) going to the disabled list. I understand that you don’t want to DL a guy and lose a week of games if you don’t have to, but the Cubs can’t keep playing with no bench. It really sucks that the injuries have piled up, but we all have to confront the reality and the Cubs have to chart the best course in the face of it.
  • As for whether Bryant’s lingering shoulder issue would require another DL stint, Joe Maddon was totally noncommittal in either direction, because he simply doesn’t know how Bryant will feel (Tribune).
  • As for how Baez is feeling, you could see he was far less than 100% running the bases in his key pinch-hit appearance in the 8th yesterday:

  • Brandon Morrow is eligible to come off the DL on Saturday (biceps), but he won’t. He is hoping he can at least start throwing by then, though (ESPN), and the pain is down.
  • Pedro Strop got to save yesterday’s win in the absence of Brandon Morrow, and he pulled it off despite having only a one-run lead, despite a sun-dropped double in the middle of the inning, and despite having to go through the middle of the D-backs order. Well done, Pedro:

  • Also, Strop’s arms remain the most beastly on the team:

  • There’s not really a feature association between this picture and the Bullets today, but it made me chuckle, so I used it:
(Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
  • This is fine. Everything is fine. The fact that he did this against the Cubs’ AA club is just fine:

  • We’ve all been there – maybe not literally like this on a baseball field, but on way or another:

Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.