It was very hard to see Jake Arrieta making another start for the Cubs, despite his belief he’s still got it, and one way or another the team was going to find a way around it (either now or right after the All-Star break). The only questions were precisely when and how.
We’ve got our answers:
Cubs place Jake Arrieta on the 10-day IL with right hamstring tightness. Righty Cory Abbott recalled from Triple-A Iowa.
— Jordan Bastian (@MLBastian) July 7, 2021
Arrieta is assuredly dealing with some hamstring tightness, as most 35-year-old athletes would be at this time of year, but I wouldn’t necessarily say it is the kind of injury that is causing his issues on the mound. The Cubs just wanted to give him – and themselves – a break.
Coming out of the All-Star break, I tend to expect the Cubs will be making alternative arrangements in the rotation, and may simply be buying time right now for (1) other guys to stretch out, and (2) Arrieta and his agent to maybe survey the landscape for a different opportunity in the second half.
As for tonight, the Cubs get a little extra pitching up to shoulder the load for the last five days before the break. Abbott has been up and down this year, which will hopefully be a good thing for his development. He’s still working to find that consistent success, but you love the arm action and the slider. The bones are there for a big league pitcher in 2022 and beyond (role TBD).