Hamels, 35, was laid up for just over a month after sustaining an oblique strain in late June. During his time apart from the team, he made two rehab starts in Triple-A Iowa, racking up three runs, six walks, and six strikeouts across 5 1/3 innings. He’s slated to take the mound for his first major-league assignment on Saturday, when the Cubs go toe-to-toe with the Brewers in a bid to win their three-game series.
Prior to his stint on the 10-day IL, the veteran southpaw delivered solid results for Chicago, sporting a 6-3 record in 17 starts with a 2.98 ERA, 3.2 BB/9, 8.8 SO/9, and 2.3 fWAR across 99 2/3 innings. While his career-best totals are still several seasons behind him, there’s little doubt that he’ll continue to be a productive starter for the Cubs down the stretch — assuming he manages to avoid further injury.
Following Hamels’ return, 33-year-old Brach was DFA’d. It’s been a rough year for the righty, who will finish his run with an unsightly 6.13 ERA, 6.4 BB/9, 10.2 SO/9, and 0.3 fWAR through 39 2/3 innings in relief.