April 24, 2024

Craig Counsell outlines his strategy after Chicago Cubs pitcher Jameson Taillon suffered a back issue.

Jameson Taillon, one of the Chicago Cubs’ top pitchers, is suffering with a lower-back issue and could miss Opening Day.

The veteran missed his start on Saturday, which is problematic for the Cubs as the season begins.

The pitching staff has some questions heading into the season. With the addition of Shota Imanaga, an improved Jordan Wicks, and others, Chicago’s rotation appeared to be stable.

While Taillon underperformed in his first season with the Cubs, it was expected that he would rebound significantly. If he could pitch similar innings as a fourth or fifth starter as he did for the New York Yankees, the rotation may be among the best in the National League Central.

However, this injury raises concerns for the rest of the rotation. Despite the increased depth, Chicago cannot handle injuries. The back half of the rotation is inexperienced and has yet to prove themselves as potential big league arms.

Of course, that could change with this opportunity, but it is not certain.


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Wicks or Javier Assad will most likely be given the opportunity to pitch, perhaps giving the rotation three left-handed starting pitchers.

Craig Counsell was asked if he would consider handedness considering that the team currently had two left-handed pitchers, Imanaga and Justin Steele, and he said it would not be a concern, according to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com.

“I look at it as, ‘Who are the best individuals to get hitters out?’ It has nothing to do with being left or right-handed. Who will be the most effective at getting people out? That’s who will pitch.”

Counsell must make a difficult decision, one he hopes will be temporary.

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