Cubs Rumors: Japanese ace interest, empty rotation slot, Pete Crow-Armstrong

  • Cubs sent scouts to look at Japanese prospect
  • Pitching prospect due for MLB debut
  • Pete Crow-Armstrong is gem of rising Cubs farm system
Team Japan pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto
Team Japan pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto / Yukihito Taguchi-USA TODAY Sports
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Cubs rumors: A weekend of moves on tap in Pittsburgh?

With the series starting in the Steel City, the Cubs fortified their bullpen on Friday by calling up right-hander Keegan Thompson, who has pitched in 15 games for the Cubs this season, but none since being lit up by the Houston Astros for three runs without recording an out on May 17.

Thompson returns after posting a 5.56 ERA in 11.1 innings over six August appearances for Triple-A Iowa. While the numbers may not be that impressive as a whole, the Cubs are in need of an arm and Thompson has been better of late, allowing only two earned runs and one walk in his last 8.1 innings with eight strikeouts.

With Thompson coming up, the Cubs optioned reliever Michael Rucker to Iowa.

While Thompson is a part of the Chicago bullpen for now, don't be surprised if it doesn't last long. It's possible that he could be there for a short time with Jordan Wicks rumored to make his MLB debut by drawing a start in the Sunday series finale.

The first-round draft pick in 2021 has done well at both the Double-A and Triple-A levels this season and was scratched from his start earlier in the week for what was described as a non-injury-related reason, meaning he could be getting the call from the Cubs.