Pedro Strop spent a month on the injured list earlier this year with a hamstring injury, the second such injury in the last two seasons. (A different hamstring each time.)
He returned in early June, but he was clearly not 100 percent. His velocity was down, and he had a number of bad outings including a 9.00 ERA over his last eight appearances (seven innings) with a pair of home runs allowed.
This isn’t the Strop we’ve been used to seeing over the last few years. Tuesday afternoon, the Cubs acknowledged that Strop is still injured:
The Cubs are recalling right handed pitcher Duane Underwood from Class AAA Iowa. Pedro Strop is headed to the injured list.— David Kaplan (@thekapman) July 30, 2019
Duane Underwood Jr. has been much better for Triple-A Iowa since he was moved to the bullpen. He’s got a 3.04 ERA, 1.238 WHIP and 35 strikeouts in 26x innings in 18 appearances in relief, after an ERA of 6.46 in 10 starts this year.
Underwood has one MLB appearance, June 25, 2018 at Dodger Stadium. He held a pretty good Dodgers team to two hits and one run in four innings that night. A move to the pen seems to suit him, and maybe he’ll provide the relief Strop couldn’t while injured. I would suspect at this point that Pedro might wind up on the IL or on rehab assignment until rosters expand in September.
As always, we await developments.