Cubs reportedly bringing back Strop

Trump? Biden?


If given a choice, Cubs fans might suggest this: "Vote for Pedro."

If "Napolean Dynamite" hadn't already coined the phrase, Cubs fans might opt for it, if asked whether their team should bring back popular reliever Pedro Strop.

Multiple reports Friday had the Cubs agreeing to terms with Strop, pending a physical. The 35-year-old righty was released by the Reds this week and is expected to report to the Cubs' alternate training site in South Bend. He signed with Cincinnati in the off-season after pitching for the Cubs from 2013-2019, helping them win a World Series and posting a 2.90 ERA over 373 innings.

The question is whether Strop can contribute down the stretch for a leaky Cubs bullpen. He threw only 2⅓ innings for the Reds, walking six, and his fastball had lost velocity, according to reports.

Alzolay's day:

Cubs manager David Ross said rookie right-hander Adbert Alzolay will start Game 1 of Saturday's doubleheader (4:15 p.m. start) against the Cardinals at Wrigley Field.

The Cubs will have a "bullpen day," Ross said, in Game 2.

Alzolay, who made his Cubs debut last season (12⅓ innings), made one fill-in start earlier this season, and it was also against the Cardinals. He pitched 5 shutout innings, allowing just 2 hits, while striking out six and walking one.

Happ gets a break:

A day after fouling a pitch off his eye, center fielder Ian Happ was out of the starting lineup against the Cardinals on Friday, as the Cubs opened a weekend series.

Happ has put himself into National League MVP conversation with his breakout season (.311/.421/.648, 10 HR, 22 RBI). Manager David Ross said his switch-hitter is "day to day." Happ saw a doctor Friday and had multiple tests done on his eye.

"I think [he's] going to be fine," Ross said. "With everything he's gone through today, I just don't think it's smart to start him."

Ross added if Happ was feeling better, he might be available to pinch-hit.

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