Some good news on the (very clearly COVID-related) Injured List front, as Cubs starting pitcher Marcus Stroman has been “cleared” to rejoin the team, which means he can actually be fully back and throwing bullpens with his teammates, even if he’s not yet activated off the IL.
The big question, though: after missing multiple weeks – Stroman hasn’t pitched in a game since May 1 – is Stroman able to jump right into a start, or will he need a minor league rehab assignment?
Well, his manager David Ross seems to think it could happen very soon:
Marcus Stroman – who's been on the injured list without a specified injury and hasn't pitched for the Cubs since May 1 – was in the Wrigley Field clubhouse today and threw a bullpen session. Cubs manager David Ross: “He’ll probably start a game real soon in the big leagues.”
— Patrick Mooney (@PJ_Mooney) May 17, 2022
I take that to be EXCELLENT news, and here’s why: if Stroman threw a bullpen today at Wrigley Field, and if David Ross went from previously saying he wasn’t sure if Stroman would need a rehab start to now saying Stroman will probably start in the big leagues “real soon,” that bullpen must’ve looked quite good!
The Cubs have Keegan Thompson going tonight and then Drew Smyly on Wednesday. From there, it’s all wide open. Seems plausible we could see Stroman back as soon as this weekend.