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Cubs reliever Brandon Morrow still optimistic about returning this season

Brandon Morrow, Cubs

Chicago Cubs right-handed relief pitcher Brandon Morrow has not pitched at all in 2019 as he is recovering from elbow and forearm issues, but he does have hope that he can return at some point this season:

“I faced hitters just last week, so I’m pretty built up,” Morrow said, according to Jesse Rogers of ESPN Chicago. “I’ve thrown the last two days and should be back on the mound early next week.”

Morrow has not pitched since before last year’s All-Star break, when he had pitched to the tune of a 1.47 ERA over 35 relief appearances, allowing 24 hits while striking out 31 batters across 30.2 innings of work.

“With the way I’m feeling, I expect to progress quickly,” added Morrow.

The 35-year-old entered the big leagues with the Seattle Mariners back in 2007, making 60 appearances out of the bullpen and going 3-4 with a 4.12 ERA, surrendering 56 hits and fanning 66 hitters across 63.1 frames of action.

Morrow spent the first three years of his career with the Mariners before being dealt to the Toronto Blue Jays in December 2009. The Blue Jays then proceeded to try Morrow as a starter, and he went 10-7 with a 4.49 ERA while giving up 136 hits and registering 178 punchouts through 146.1 innings during his first season with the club.

Overall, Morrow spent five seasons in Toronto before making his way to the San Diego Padres in December 2014. Injuries limited him to just 49 innings over two seasons with the Padres, and in 2017, he landed with the Los Angeles Dodgers, where he logged a 2.06 ERA over 45 relief outings. The Cubs then signed Morrow to a two-year deal.