Cubs Injury News: Adbert Alzolay Shoulder Issue, Ian Happ Elbow Procedure

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Cubs Injury News: Adbert Alzolay Shoulder Issue, Ian Happ Elbow Procedure

Chicago Cubs

You knew this was coming. The obligatory terrible surprise injury news when Spring Training officially opens fully, and guys either can or cannot go fully, so the team knows it’ll become obvious soon enough. And they make their announcements.

Sigh:

The Ian Happ news is notable, and leaves you always open to wondering how a guy will bounce back in the early part of the season. We’ll see to what extent his swing is impacted, and obviously his throwing arm. Happ is/was expected to be close to the everyday starter in left field, with the many other options rotating in. This might mean more days off, earlier in the year especially. Probably a TBD situation depending on how he progresses from here.

The Adbert Alzolay news, though … eff. Just such a huge EFF. Obviously we’ve been looking forward to seeing Alzolay after his late-season adjustments, and he was going to be in that mix for a full-time starter gig, while also probably moving in and out of the bullpen. If the Cubs are going to be successful in 2022, Alzolay is (was?) going to have to be a big part of that.

Shoulder “tightness” is one of those amorphous designations, but when it comes up in Spring Training paired with foreknowledge that he’s going to be on the Injured List for “not a short stint,” then it’s probably something in there. If it’s not surgical, then it could be a soft-tissue strain situation, and the Cubs have always been overly cautious with shoulders when it comes to those issues. I can’t even project when Alzolay might start ramping up, but the whole “not a short stint” thing has me wondering if the Cubs are already targeting him for the 60-day IL as soon as they can shift him over late in Spring Training (which obviously would mean he ain’t coming back until sometime in June at the earliest).

Just eff.

As for how it impacts the rest of the offseason, well, more pitching depth. Gotta have it. Already did, but now the urgency is all the more to bring in guys who can at least compete for innings.

And obviously the opportunity is all the more present for guys like Justin Steele, Keegan Thompson, Alec Mills, and younger arms to grab a rotation spot and run with it.



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.