Why Cubs say now is time to ‘see what we’ve got’ in young arms

When Cubs rookie Keegan Thompson got done with a scoreless major league starting debut at Wrigley Field against the Dodgers on Tuesday night, he called it “unbelievable” and said “I didn’t think it would happen.”

Why not?

“It’s always just been a dream to throw here.”

If Thompson thought it was a dream, imagine the fantasy the Cubs’ front office is living living these days with some of its young pitchers actually experiencing a few doses of major-league success.

Talk of the next crop of pitchers coming in the farm system has been the stuff of rainbows and unicorns since the first draft class of the Theo Epstein-Jed Hoyer-Jason McLeod regime in 2012.

“I think it’s been something that has been a focus here, trying to be better,” said second-year manager David Ross, whose pitcher of record in Thompson’s start was another homegrown rookie, Justin Steele, who earned his first career win — and whose starter the next day was yet another homegrown pitcher, Adbert Alzolay.

“That shows that we’re getting on the right track,” Ross said. “And I think the front office, player development and the pitchers themselves have all put in a lot of hard work and it’s something that they want to focus on. It’s nice to see.”

It already looks like one of the primary focuses of a 2021 season that Hoyer, the newly promoted team president, has called a season of “transition.”

Barely a month…

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