Chicago Cubs hoping to buck pitching trend

Let’s go all the way back in time to 2008. Jeff Samardzija made his debut with the Chicago Cubs, kicking off a six and a half year run in the Windy City before he was traded to the A’s at the deadline. That trade, which also sent Jason Hammel to Oakland, brought Dan Straily and Addison Russell over the Cubs, giving the team a long term answer at short.

Samardzija’s tenure with the Cubs was also notable for another reason. He is the last homegrown pitcher that really made an impact in Chicago, as the Cubs’ other pitching prospects have fizzled out. Even now, most of the Cubs’ top pitching prospects dealt with injury, slowing their development.

Chicago Cubs hoping to find way to generate pitching

This is something that the Cubs are hoping to change. They have hired several former major league pitchers in the hopes that they can create plans for those young arms progressing through the minors. Although the health has not been there just yet, some of those arms are seeing an increase in velocity with the new plans.

It is possible that these new ideas can make a difference at the major league level as well. While the top three in the rotation are set, the back of the Cubs’ rotation remains unsettled. Adbert Alzolay, Alec Mills, and Brailyn Marquez are expected to contend for those final two spots, but it would not be a surprise to see another free agent signing.

This is something that the Cubs want to avoid. Ideally, Alzolay and Marquez will be able to take those final two spots in the rotation and run with the opportunity. The issue is that neither has exactly proven themselves. Alzolay will have his moments where he shows his potential, but has not been able to put it all together.

While the Cubs have had success, and have been able to find homegrown stars at other positions, that needs to be the case on the pitching side as well. They cannot continue to spend their way out of their inability to develop pitching.

The Chicago Cubs have not been able to generate a homegrown pitcher that has made an impact. They are hoping that will change soon.