(670 The Score) Should he be healthy enough to take the mound again this season, Cubs right-hander Marcus Stroman has expressed a willingness to fill any role the team needs late in the regular season and in a potential playoff setting, pitching coach Tommy Hottovy said.
Stroman has been sidelined since July 31, initially by a hip injury before he was then diagnosed with the rib cartilage fracture. Stroman threw live batting practice Monday and felt good afterward, and he’ll throw another session in the coming days, Meghan Montemurro of the Tribune recently reported. It remains unclear when Stroman could rejoin the Cubs for game action as 16 games remain in the regular season.
“We’re at the point of the year where I think a lot of guys have thrown their egos aside and want to help the team in any way they can,” Hottovy said on the Mully & Haugh Show on Wednesday morning. “They understand there’s a lot of different ways to do that. We’re still talking through, when Stro comes back, what the best option is going to be to utilize him. He’s been open and willing to say, ‘Hey, I’ll pitch out of the bullpen. I’ll start if you guys want me to. I’ll do both. I’ll work back.’ Those are all the things we’re trying to weigh here. How can we give guys rest? How can we put them in the right chance to be successful? How can we form a team and put a team out there every night that’s going to compete and try to win a ball game?”
Stroman, 32, has a 3.85 ERA and 1.24 WHIP in 23 starts this season. Stroman was dominant in the first half of the season but struggled in the weeks prior to landing on the injured list.
Entering play Wednesday, the Cubs trail the NL Central-leading Brewers by four games in the division race. The Cubs also sit in the second of three NL wild-card spots.