Jon Lester staying on schedule … Duane Underwood Jr. makes Major League debut on Monday at Dodger Stadium
With the Cubs pitching staff turned upside down due to multiple reasons, Joe Maddon announced that Jon Lester will stay on schedule and pitch the second game of the series at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday.
Tyler Chatwood left the team Sunday to be with his wife for the birth of the couple’s first child. Mike Montgomery moved up a day, as he expected, to start in Cincinnati. But instead of Lester going in the opener of the four-game series against the Dodgers, the Cubs will bring up a pitcher from Iowa.
Multiple reports indicated Duane Underwood Jr. will start on Monday. The one-time top pitching prospect in the Cubs system will be making his Major League debut.
Underwood Jr. has excellent stuff. He’s struggled with consistency and has not pitched to expectations for a full season since he was in High-A Myrtle Beach in 2015.
Duane Underwood Jr. is 3-7 in 14 games, 13 starts, with a 4.27 ERA and 1.24 WHIP with Iowa this year. In 71 2/3 innings, the 23-year old right-hander has allowed 44 runs, 34 earned, on 69 hits with 20 walks and 60 strikeouts. Underwood Jr. is on the 40-man roster. The only move that will be required is for the Cubs to place Chatwood on the paternity leave list.
The Cubs are expected to have Underwood Jr., Lester, Kyle Hendricks and Jose Quintana start the four games at Dodger Stadium.