Bumgarner and Bote, Hamels Debut, Yu Smiling, Roederer, and Other Bullets

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Bumgarner and Bote, Hamels Debut, Yu Smiling, Roederer, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs

The good and successful mornings with the kiddos would not be as lovely and gratifying without the challenging ones. Folks might not share the latter ones of Facebook, but they’re real, and they’re just as important.

  • David Bote could be good to go in a game today after returning to baseball activities yesterday. He says Madison Bumgarner reached out to him to check in after the beaning, which is a classy move (Cubs.com).
  • Importantly, Bote is not in the concussion protocol, so apparently there was never a concern about a concussion: “We went through all the correct things,” Bote said. “There’s no concussion. But, we went through many, many, many tests. I’m thankful for the Giants’ medical staff, as well as our medical staff. They did a thorough, thorough job. I’m like, ‘Hey, I’m good guys. Let’s go.’ But, they keep going, keep going, making sure. It’s a hot topic. Mental health is huge right now, so the Cubs and the Giants have done nothing but state-of-the-art process.” That’s exactly as it should be. Even after the season starts, I’d much rather see players subjected to WAY MORE evaluation than is “necessary” – at the expense of a few more games – rather than risk an early return, which can make things so much worse, especially if there is a second successive head trauma.
  • Cole Hamels makes his Spring Training debut today, and I’ll be curious to see where his velocity is. To be honest, it could be low or high, and I wouldn’t necessarily draw any conclusions from it because of the time of year and the way guys ramp up. But at 35, you’d expect to see some decline … and yet, after a mechanical adjustment around the time he was coming to the Cubs last year, Hamels saw a bump in his velocity, approaching the mid-90s.
  • Happy Yu should make You Happy:

  • Darvish, who is speaking much more in English this year, ascribes his happiness not just to his health, but also a better mental outlook: “I learned a lot of things from last year. Like before, I’d worry about the future, [I’d be] scared for the future. Now I’m living like ‘now.’ So that makes me more confident and more happy.” That’s good life advice right there.
  • Also, likely nice for Darvish to have Hamels in the house from the get-go this year, since they know each other well from their Rangers days. Just a little added comfort. Can’t hurt.
  • A Jon Lester smile-ish:

  • Even before reading this or looking at the pictures, I’m taking a stab that the mentioned Cubs youngster is outfield prospect Cole Roederer:

  • Sure enough: “Roederer earns Andrew Benintendi comparisons for his all-around game, yet lasted 77 picks in the 2018 Draft because he injured his non-throwing shoulder as a high school senior and had a strong commitment to UCLA. With his bat-to-ball skills, quick lefty swing and advanced approach, he could blossom into a .300 hitter with 25 homers on an annual basis.” You could just already tell that Roederer had become that “helium” guy for the Cubs, a big risky pick and pricey signing, but whose body changed a good bit at just the right time for the Cubs to “win a scouting competition”, so to speak. Were the draft done over, there’s no doubt he would be a first rounder. There’s still a long way to go for him to actually reach top 100 prospect status, of course, but everything has gone right so far, from the results to the development to the eyes-on scouting reports.
  • You’ll see more on Roederer as Bryan unveils his top Cubs prospects list.
  • Big discounts on the Fire tablets at Amazon right now.
  • What the divisions are known for, kinda:


  • Very nice news in the Bears world:

  • Confirmed, kicked:

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.