Cubs Roster Updates: Wade Miley, Brailyn Marquez, Harold Ramirez

A few roster-related things to update on today, via David Ross.

First, Wade Miley isn’t quite ready to get into Spring Training games, but Ross isn’t terming it any kind of injury issue:

That’s all fine and appropriate – Jon Lester was the same way, even when he first joined the Cubs – though with a hyper-abbreviated Spring Training this year, you wonder if his initial turn in the regular season will be impacted, and whether the Cubs were anticipating that/preparing for that with all their pitching signings.

Meanwhile, the two players who hadn’t yet reported to camp – pitcher Brailyn Marquez and outfielder Harold Ramirez – still aren’t in camp, with no specific reason given (Bastian). It had been thought that Marquez and Ramirez were held up because of visa issues, which could still be the case (the lockout ended only 10 days ago). It’s a bummer, whatever the cause.

I would say Ramirez’s chances of making the big league roster have dropped precipitously, because he’d have only 18 days (as of today) before Opening Day. Without any options remaining, Ramirez would have to clear waivers if the Cubs wanted to send him to the minors, which he actually might at this point. Some clubs love the quality of his contact and the Cubs clearly wanted to take a chance on him, but it’s a very crowded outfield situation for the Cubs at the moment.

Marquez, 23, lost the 2020 year because of the pandemic, and then lost last year because of COVID and a shoulder injury. If anyone out there did NOT need to be locked out this offseason and then show up late to Spring Training, it was definitely Marquez. The upside is still theoretically there for Marquez to become a front-line starting pitcher. But there were already questions about whether the body and the mechanics would realistically allow him to sustain his performance for five+ innings at a time. With multiple lost years? And a delay to this year? I’ll keep the mind opened because of his age, but it might be time to increase the “bullpen only” odds from about 50% up to 80%.

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Brett Taylor is the Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and on LinkedIn here. Brett is also the founder of Bleacher Nation, which opened up shop in 2008 as an independent blog about the Chicago Cubs. Later growing to incorporate coverage of other Chicago sports, Bleacher Nation is now one of the largest regional sports blogs on the web.

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