Cubs manager David Ross didn’t rule out Justin Steele making his next start with the big-league team. After spending much of the season in the Cubs bullpen, Steele has been stretching out to starter’s innings in Triple-A Iowa.
“I can’t tell you whether he’s going to start with us or them next,” Ross said Sunday, “but he’s definitely getting close.”
In his last start, on Thursday, Steele threw five scoreless innings, allowing four hits.
“Five innings, 75 pitches,” Ross said, “he’s definitely on track to get here sooner rather than later.”
The timing of Steele’s next call-up will also depend on where in the rotation the Cubs slot him. Right-hander Trevor Williams was the one starting pitcher who the Cubs traded at the deadline, packaging him with shortstop Javy Báez for Mets outfield prospect Pete Crow-Armstrong. Right-hander Jake Arrieta returned from the injured list to start on Friday, in Williams’ place.
Steele, who made his MLB debut in April, has a 2.03 ERA in 11 relief appearances for the Cubs.
Gordon Wittenmyer contributed to the reporting of this story form Washington, DC.