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BCB After Dark: The Nick of time

The late-night/early-morning spot for Cubs fans asks you if Nick Madrigal will be a Cub in 2023.

MLB: Chicago White Sox at Chicago Cubs Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome back to BCB After Dark: the groovin’ spot for night owls, early-risers, new parents and Cubs fans abroad. Come on in out of the heat and cool off. Take a load off your feet. We still have a couple of prime tables available. No cover charge. No dress code either, except that you must wear clothes or keep your camera turned off. Bring your own beverage.

BCB After Dark is the place for you to talk baseball, music, movies, or anything else you need to get off your chest, as long as it is within the rules of the site. The late-nighters are encouraged to get the party started, but everyone else is invited to join in as you wake up the next morning and into the afternoon.

The Cubs beat the Nationals tonight, 7-5 in 11 innings. They were leading 4-0, but the Cubs traded away their four best relievers at the trade deadline and manager David Ross tried to to get an eight-out save from his formerly fifth-best reliever, something he’d never come close to doing before. But the rest of the bullpen did well and a special shoutout needs to go to Mark Leiter Jr., who got his first career save.

Last night, I asked you how many games will the Cubs win in 2023. I said I was just asking you for your gut instinct, but your guts are all feeling pretty good right now as 47 percent of you thought the Cubs would win between 81 and 90 games. That’s in line for a Wild Card spot, depending on whether the win total is closer to 81 or 90. In second place with 44 percent was between 71 and 80 wins.

On Tuesday nights/Wednesday morning I don’t do a full movie essay, but you can go back and see what I wrote about Blake Edwards’ 1962 film Experiment in Terror. But I always have time for some music, so those of you who skip that can do so now.

Tonight we are going to do a bit of 70’s jazz fusion from a group that most of you probably know well from their R&B and disco hits, Kool & The Gang. But Kool & The Gang started out as a jazz combo and only later, as they became more popular, started incorporating more soul, rhythm-and-blues and dance beats to their music. But they never completely abandoned their jazz roots and had several pieces of jazz fusion in their catalog.

Also, I’m featuring this because I could watch Soul Train videos from the 1970s all day. Sure, the music was usually better than the stuff they played in the same era on the “white” shows like American Bandstand, but what was best about Soul Train in the seventies is simply the clothes they wore. This is the only decade where people could get away with wearing stuff like that. I just love it.

Welcome back to everyone who skips all that jazz (fusion).

Tonight I’m asking about Cubs second baseman Nick Madrigal again. Madrigal has had a rough season with two long stints on the injured list, one in May for a lower back strain and one in June and July with a groin strain. In between, Madrigal has only played in 41 games and has hit a measly .243/.303/.279. He has just five extra base hits all season and all five of them were doubles.

Now to be fair, Madrigal has been much better in the ten games he’s played in since coming off the IL on August 2. In the ten games he’s played in this month, Madrigal is hitting .313/.421/.375. That’s very good, but it’s also a tiny sample size. But if you think the reason that Madrigal was so poor earlier this season and that he’s doing well today because he’s healthy, then maybe that August line is more representative of the true Madrigal.

But the Cubs have also made a lot of noise about signing a free agent shortstop this winter. While a majority of you thought that they wouldn’t when I asked you last week, if the Cubs do, then Nico Hoerner has to move over to second base and there’s nowhere for Madrigal to play except DH. And we’re all hoping Franmil Reyes will play there. It’s way too soon to count on that, but the early returns on Reyes have been excellent. Madrigal really can’t play any position in the field other than second base, either.

So my question is: Will Nick Madrigal be on the Cubs Opening Day roster in 2023? Al has already noted that the Cubs are going to face a 40-man roster crunch this winter, and if the Cubs sign a big free agent, then there’s a good chance the Cubs would look to trade Madrigal away for a prospect who doesn’t need a 40-man spot. The Cubs could also just decline to offer Madrigal a contract, but he’s not yet arbitration-eligible so his salary probably won’t be onerous.

There are two other ways Madrigal could end up left off the Opening Day roster next season. One is that he’s injured, and from his health history that seems like a solid possibility. The other is that Madrigal still has minor league options left and the Cubs could send him down to Iowa if he can’t make the team and they can’t find a team willing to trade for him. They did that with Ian Happ back in 2019 and that worked out.

So tell us. Will Nick Madrigal be on the roster on Opening Day 2023? And if vote no, please tell us if you think he’ll be traded, injured, non-tendered or in Iowa.


Will Nick Madrigal be on the Cubs’ 2023 Opening Day roster?

This poll is closed

  • 70%
    (94 votes)
  • 29%
    (40 votes)
134 votes total Vote Now

Thank you so much for stopping by. We hope you were able to enjoy some cool music and sports talk on a hot August night. Please let us know if we can do anything for you before you leave. Please tip your waitstaff. Get home safely. And join us again tomorrow night for another edition of BCB After Dark.