The Cubs probably would have been fine if just one key member of their bullpen had gone down. But when Craig Kimbrel, Steve Cishek, and Brandon Kintzler all went on the shelf within days of one another, the void was at least as painful as any of their individual maladies. Kintzler was able to come back Friday night, and now it sounds as though Kimbrel will be ready for Sunday’s game.
According to Gordon Wittenmyer of the Sun-Times, the closer was on the team’s travel roster for the trip from Pittsburgh to Williamsport and is expected to be activated prior to the Little League Classic. The Cubs had been coy about Kimbrel’s timeline, saying that a rehab stint might even be necessary, but his bullpen sessions have gone well and he’s apparently said he’s good to go.
The bullpen should be back at full strength by Tuesday, when Cishek, who’s been out with a sore hip, is expected to be activated. We’ll have more on these and their corresponding moves when they become official.