Cubs

Cubs: Joe Maddon hears from MLB after ripping umpire

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Cubs: Joe Maddon hears from MLB after ripping umpire

MILWAUKEE – As expected, Cubs manager Joe Maddon heard from Major League Baseball about his we’re-not-gonna-take-it message for umpires everywhere.

“As of right now, nothing punitive,” Maddon said before Friday’s game against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park.

It wouldn’t be surprising if Maddon got fined. Maddon spoke with Joe Torre, MLB’s executive vice president of baseball operations, about getting ejected from Wednesday’s win over the St. Louis Cardinals for arguing balls and strikes.

[SHOP: Gear up, Cubs fans!]

“Joe and I talk at least once a year,” said Maddon, who managed the Tampa Bay Rays for nine seasons before moving to Chicago. “It happens at least once a year.”

Maddon didn’t mention home-plate umpire D.J. Reyburn by name, but he used his postgame media session to complain about unequal treatment for his young hitters, calling it “egregiously bad.”

“We just talked about that particular game and what went on,” Maddon said. “Of course, my comments postgame were discussed. But Joe’s not one to tell you to do this or not do that. That’s why he’s so good as a manager, too. We just talked about things and came to an agreement.” 

During that postgame purpose pitch, Maddon said “I had enough” at least three times, sticking up for rookies Kris Bryant, Jorge Soler and Addison Russell, feeling like the Cardinals were getting calls because of their veteran stature.  

“Not going to put up with anything,” Maddon said that night. “We’re trying to get something done here. And I’m not going to permit our guys to get shortchanged based on the fact that they haven’t been here a long time.”     

Two of the Cubs' best prospects made Keith Law's annual Top 100 list

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USA Today

Two of the Cubs' best prospects made Keith Law's annual Top 100 list

For those who follow such things, Keith Law's yearly Top 100 prospect rankings is always a highly anticipated read. What would baseball twitter even do with their time if they couldn't spend it vocally disagreeing with subjective lists? Having a handful of Top 100 guys is always a shot in the arm for franchises that maybe aren't doing a whole lot of winning at the major league level; when you know you're not winning a World Series, the debuts of these prospects are high points of the summer. 

There wasn't a whole lot of Cubs' representation this season, which isn't a surprise by any means. Only guys two made Law's list: Brennen Davis at 55, and Brailyn Marquez at 80.  

Law claims Davis has the highest upside of any Cubs' prospect, but isn't necessarily close to a debut: 

Davis is lanky and has barely begun to fill out, so there’s likely to be more power to come, while he’s already shown he can manage at-bats and use the middle of the field to get himself on base. Despite his 6′4″ frame he already has a very balanced swing, and the Cubs will just have to tighten up some mechanical things since he’s got such long levers. A former shortstop, he’s adapted quickly to center field; he projects to stay there and add value with his range. 

He also loves Marquez's stuff – comparing it to Aroldis Chapman's – and says it's the reason why he's team's best pitching prospect since Dylan Cease. You can see the entire rankings, which go pretty in-depth, right here. 

Brandon Morrow sidelined with upper chest strain, no timetable for return

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USA TODAY

Brandon Morrow sidelined with upper chest strain, no timetable for return

Brandon Morrow’s comeback attempt has hit a bump in the road.

Morrow, the Cubs reliever and former closer, has what the club is calling a “mild right upper chest strain,” according to MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian. Bastian added Morrow felt the strain in his last bullpen session and there is no clear timeline for his return.

The strain is the latest ailment to sideline the oft-injured Morrow, who hasn't pitched since July 2018 due to a series of arm troubles. The 35-year-old has undergone two elbow surgeries since then (November 2018, September 2019) before becoming a free agent this winter. He rejoined the Cubs on a minor-league deal.

Morrow entered camp optimistic the latest procedure did the trick to get his elbow healthy. The Cubs have been easing him into action — the right-hander is throwing one bullpen every four days. Morrow said earlier this month he’s experienced some aches and pains but attributed those to being part of the rehab process.

Morrow is listed as day-to-day, according to Mark Gonzalez of the Chicago Tribune. But considering his injury history — and the fact he was already unlikely to crack the Opening Day roster —  the Cubs will proceed with extreme caution. There's no need to expedite his return, mild strain or not.

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