Brandon Morrow pitched in every game of the World Series. Is that "high leverage" enough for you? Barring any unforeseen circumstances, Morrow will be the Cubs' new closer on Opening Day, the team's fourth in as many seasons. Wade Davis was sensational in 2017, living up to the hype of being one of baseball's best relievers by converting 32 of his 33 save opportunities, being selected as the Cubs' lone representative at the All-Star Game and striking out Bryce Harper to send the Cubs to their third straight National League Championship Series. But he got a record-setting contract from the Colorado Rockies, meaning Morrow is now the guy on the North Side. It's not like Morrow is some consolation prize, though. He was terrific as a late-inning man for the Los Angeles Dodgers last season and logged some really important innings during the playoff run that went all the way to Game 7 of the World Series. Morrow turned in a 2.06 ERA during the regular season, then he shut down the Cubs in the NLCS and pitched in all seven games of that epic Fall Classic against the Houston Astros. It wasn't all pretty, of course. He gave up four runs and two homers without recording an out in that bonkers Game 5. But in his six other outings, he surrendered just one run on four hits over 5.1 innings of work. No, he hasn't been a go-to closer in a decade. But he's pitched in plenty of important moments and is ready to take on the bullpen's most high-profile role. "I've closed before. It's been 10 years, but there's so many different places to pull experience from. And I think all the playoff experience last year helps a lot in pressure situations," Morrow said Wednesday at Cubs camp. "That was something that I didn't have before. I pitched in almost every other situation besides a playoff situation and World Series games and coming in with bases loaded, two outs in the World Series and everything like that. I've pretty much seen it all.
Brandon Morrow hasn't closed in a decade, but he pitched in every game of the World Series
NBC Sports Chicago | Feb 15