The Chicago Cubs are reportedly releasing hard-throwing right-handed reliever Brandon Morrow.
Morrow was wonderful with the team during the first of half of the 2018 season, but hasn’t pitched with the team since then.
Sources: The Cubs are releasing RHP Brandon Morrow.
— Robert Murray (@ByRobertMurray) July 8, 2020
Morrow was a free agent this winter, but signed a minor-league deal with Chicago. After signing with the Cubs in December, Morrow began dealing with chest and calf injuries in February. In April, he informed the team the his rehab wasn’t progressing well and he planned to shut it down for the 2020 season.
What’s Next for Morrow?
Cubs president Theo Epstein mentioned that Morrow was dealing with a number of issues and the organization didn’t feel that he could contribute this season. Epstein wished him the best going forward, which means his career with the Cubs is likely over. He signed a two-year deal with the team in 2018, but sadly injuries derailed most of his time in Chicago.
In 2018, Morrow posted a 1.47 ERA with 22 saves and 31 strikeouts through 35 appearances with the Cubs. Sadly, he suffered an elbow injury that sidelined him for the entire second half of the season. Morrow did not make another appearance for the Cubs after that.
That offseason Morrow underwent elbow surgery and was hopeful to be able to contribute in 2019. Sadly, Morrow had multiple setbacks and was unable to get healthy enough to take the mound for Chicago. It has been a frustrating year and a half for Morrow, but luckily the Cubs had other options they could lean on.
The Cubs have seven-time All-Star reliever Craig Kimbrel locked down as the closer for the 2020 season. However, the Cubs lack depth behind Kimbrel in the bullpen. Rowan Wick is coming off a solid 2019 campaign, but still struggles with his command. They also brought in veteran reliever Jeremy Jeffress who landed himself in the All-Star Game in 2018.
To be honest, the Cubs aren’t going to miss Brandon Morrow much since he hasn’t been part of their bullpen in quite some time. They did lose some key free agents in the bullpen, but Kimbrel is a lock down option in the ninth inning. Morrow underwent a procedure for a pinched nerve, so it’s unlikely he pitches in 2020, but hopefully he’s able to get back to full health for 2021.