The Chicago Cubs are adding another arm to their massive cache of relievers, with Dillon Maples coming up.
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) September 13, 2019
Hopefully this isn’t an indication that someone else in the bullpen is injured, because, although you don’t *need* to do a one-to-one roster move in September (if you’re on the 40-man, you can come up), once the group gets really beefed up, you tend to draw the line somewhere.
As for Maples, you know the story before I even say it: he’s got one of the best sliders in baseball, and he’s got a fastball that COULD be plus-plus, but he cannot consistently throw it for strikes (much less locate it precisely). So the slider doesn’t play up as much as it should, the fastball doesn’t do much of anything, and his results are extraordinarily erratic. The upside is as an elite reliever. The downside is as a guy you absolutely cannot use. He’ll get on a long run where he’s the first guy, and then boom, out of nowhere, he’ll be the second guy. It’s tough.
At Iowa this year, he has a 42.0% strikeout rate, and a 19.2% walk rate, so yeah, again, you know the drill.