Phillies prospect and No. 7 pick in last year’s draft Aaron Nola is headed to the big leagues and will make his MLB debut Tuesday against the Rays in Philadelphia.
Nola was billed as being close to MLB-ready coming out of LSU and has pitched well in the minors, but it’s interesting timing considering he had a clunker of a start last time out at Triple-A. He failed to make it out of the fourth inning, allowing six runs.
Prior to that ugly outing Nola had a 2.03 ERA and 89/16 K/BB ratio in 106 innings between Double-A and Triple-A this year. Nola projects as a potential mid-rotation starter with excellent command. He’s the fourth 2014 first-round pick to reach the majors after Brandon Finnegan (17th pick, Royals), Carlos Rodon (3rd pick, White Sox), and Kyle Schwarber (4th pick, Cubs).
Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo suffered what appeared to be an awful injury during Sunday’s game against the Pirates, twisting his ankle while attempting to field a bunt. An MRI revealed that he has a lateral sprain of his right ankle, Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times reports. Rizzo will wear a walking boot for five to seven days before being reevaluated.
Given that there are only two weeks left in the regular season, it seems doubtful Rizzo would be able to return to aid the Cubs’ NL Wild Card chase. The club entered Monday leading the second Wild Card by a game over the Brewers.
Rizzo, 30, is batting .289/.404/.516 with 26 home runs, 93 RBI, and 88 runs scored in 592 plate appearances on the year. Victor Caratini started at first base for Monday’s game against the Reds. The Cubs may also use Ian Happ, Willson Contreras, and Jonathan Lucroy at first base while Rizzo is out.