Chicago Cubs Lose Critical Piece Of Pitching Staff to Injury

In a tight race for a playoff spot, it couldn't be worse timing for the Chicago Cubs, as they've lost closer Adbert Alzolay for at least two weeks. 

Alzolay heads to the IL with a right forearm strain. He's posted 18 saves in his last 30 appearances after taking over as the Cubs closer. Overall, he has 22 saves and a 2.71 ERA with a 1.01 WHIP and a sparkling 66:12 K/BB ratio in 62 innings. 

The Cubs are three games back of the Milwaukee Brewers for top spot in the NL Central, while they're currently holding down the 2nd Wild Card spot, two games up on the Arizona Diamondbacks, and just two up in the loss column on the Miami Marlins. 

It's likely that Julian MerryweatherMark Leiter Jr. and José Cuas will now be in the mix for saves, and to hold down the fort until Alzolay can hopefully return in the regular season's final week.

It's also worth noting that Michael Fulmer, who was activated from the IL from his own forearm strain, was a decent closer in 2021 with the Detroit Tigers. He was not, however, having his best season this year, with a 4.47 ERA and a 1.33 WHIP.

Photo: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports