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Nico Hoerner, Keegan Thompson hope to rejoin Cubs soon

2 years agoAndy Martinez

There may be just 16 games left in the season, but both Nico Hoerner and Keegan Thompson want to make sure they can hit the field again before it ends.

“That’s huge,” Thompson said. “It’s nice to get a couple more outings in under my belt here at the end of the year. It’s nice to hopefully end on a high note. Looking forward to that.”

Thompson (low back) made a rehab start Friday with Triple-A Iowa, striking out 4 and allowing 1 run on 1 hit and a walk in 2.1 innings of work. He threw 45 pitches in his first game action since Aug. 19.

“Started out a little slow getting back in there,” Thompson said. “I had a little anxious nerves, going out there and starting again for the first time in about a month. So that was nice to feel again, to compete, and did well. That’s all I could really ask for and my body felt good.“

David Ross made it seem like a return for Thompson is likely in the near future.

“We’ll look at how the rotation shapes up moving forward and the bullpen and just see how everybody comes out of their starts and he’ll be back in there soon,” Ross said prior to Sunday’s game. “I don’t have a date I’m ready to share yet, but he’ll be back in there shortly.”

Hoerner — who has missed the last week with a mild to moderate strain in his triceps — played catch from 90 feet on Sunday and did some agility work.

“I mean, if there’s an opportunity to be healthy and on the field playing Major League Baseball, I’m gonna do that,” Hoerner said. “I think the staff is on the same page with that. Just going day by day with it.”

For Hoerner, the injury was a bit unfortunate. After a 2021 season that was myriad with injuries, he had been relatively healthy for the most part in 2022 (save for a freak ankle injury in May).

“It’s huge,” he said. “You play the game hard every day and things do end up happening, and if you do get hurt, you want it to be on a diving play, trying to make an out for a pitcher and things like that. I have peace of mind in my preparation and everything that I do. I have no regrets on that. It’s just part of playing the game hard and make adjustments from there and move on.”

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