Anthony Rizzo Notes Improvement in Back, ‘There’s a Chance’ for Thursday Return

Anthony Rizzo was out of lineup Tuesday for the second straight game after leaving Saturday’s loss with a stiff back. He told ESPN 1000 earlier in the day that the issue “came out of nowhere” and that he was still “restricted,” but that he’s improving and should be ready to return before long.

Theo Epstein noted prior the series opener in New York that “there’s a chance” Rizzo is available by Thursday’s finale, noting that the Cubs were going to be cautious with it. Backs can be tricky buggers and there’s no sense pushing it and risking anything worse.

“It’s a situation where you have to be smart for a couple days to avoid a more serious injury which will have him out for a longer period of time,” Epstein said. “We’re hopeful it’s just a couple (more) days.”

Gee, if only there was a way for the Cubs to do something that would free up a roster spot while Rizzo rests. As much grief as I’ve given them about their failure to adequately use the 10-day IL, though, it’s a little too early to add Rizzo to my previous gripes. Not yet, anyway. If he’s up to playing by the time the Cubs return home Friday, he’d have only missed five games.

If he’s able to come back by Thursday with no issues, nothing to worry about. Should this thing linger through the weekend, then you’ve got cause for concern.

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