Craaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaap. Hopefully this is not serious, but obliques can be a real medium-term issue.
We get to see Trade Deadline acquisition Andrew Chafin finally, but it’s going to come at the cost of Rowan Wick:
The #Cubs today placed RHP Rowan Wick on the 10-day IL (retroactive to Sept. 17) with a left oblique strain.
LHP Andrew Chafin was activated off of the 10-day IL. pic.twitter.com/hQYxnXczaw
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) September 19, 2020
First, on Chafin: the 30-year-old lefty has pretty much always been solid in his career when he’s been healthy. He’s coming back from a finger issue, so hopefully he’s now 100%, and the Cubs just added a lefty to the pen who can also get out righties. You want Chafin to be his normal self in advance of the playoffs, because if he is, then he’s probably immediately your most reliable lefty currently in the pen.
Second, on Wick … did I mention craaaaaaaaaaaaaaaap?
The power righty had emerged as one of the Cubs’ most effective late-inning arms, actually improving on his breakout 2019 season in the peripherals. Losing him for any length of time is a serious blow to the bullpen, and it’s coming at possibly the worst time. Wick pitched a quick and easy inning against the Indians back on the 16th, so in terms of time out, he’s permitted to return a few days before the playoffs would begin. But an oblique injury? One that was bad enough to put him on the IL before the Cubs have clinched? I’m pretty darn concerned it’s going to be more than a 10-day thing. And, as always, when a guy misses time, you worry that he won’t be quite himself when he returns – at least not for an outing or two – and you can’t risk having a guy muck things up in a playoff game.
This is bad, folks. I hope we get good news soon on the seriousness of the injury, but even if it’s “mild,” I can’t sugarcoat it. This is bad.
UPDATE: And it’s worse than bad:
David Ross just said Rowan Wick's injury is "pretty bad" and it sounds like it's likely he's out for the rest of the season and whatever playoff run the Cubs make. Ross calls it a "huge loss."
— Sahadev Sharma (@sahadevsharma) September 19, 2020
This sucks hard.