Cubs scratch Jason Hammel from Friday’s start in Cincinnati with right elbow tightness
According to multiple reports, Jason Hammel has been scratched from his scheduled start Friday against the Reds. The Cubs have not determined which direction they will go for the opener at Great American Ball Park. Friday’s starter will be determined by the options Joe Maddon has after Thursday’s scheduled bullpen day.
Jon Lester (Saturday) and Kyle Hendricks (Sunday) are still on track to start the last two regular season games.
Hammel is being scratched for precautionary reasons. The Cubs do not view his elbow tightness as a serious injury but at this point of the season there is no reason to take a chance.
The Cubs said Hammel has been dealing with the injury for a couple of weeks. According to Comcast SportsNet, Hammel would be starting Friday “if the team was still playing meaningful games.”
Jason Hammel told Mark Grote, “I feel pretty good, but we’re not going to risk it.”
Hammel struggled the last time out. Hammel lasted just 2 1/3 innings and gave up six runs on six hits with a walk and two strikeouts. Hammel did not have it.
The last three of four starts have been challenging for Hammel. He has not looked the same of late as he did in the first five months of the season. Hammel’s last start that could be classified as good outing came against the Pirates on Aug. 31.
Hammel is 1-3 in his last four starts with an 8.71 ERA and 1.69 WHIP (21 runs, 20 earned, 29 hits, six walks, 22 strikeouts). Hammel has been bitten by the longball. Over his last 20 2/3 innings, Hammel has served up six home runs.
Jason Hammel is 15-10 in 30 starts this season with a 3.83 ERA, 1.20 WHIP and 4.48 FIP. Hammel has allowed 77 runs, 71 earned, on 148 hits with 53 walks and 144 strikeouts in 166 2/3 innings.
Since the break (second half), Hammel 8-5 in 13 starts with a 4.35 ERA and 1.30 WHIP. Hammel has allowed 39 runs, 34 earned, on 69 hits with 23 walks and 65 strikeouts in 70 1/3 innings