Chicago Cubs Call Up Porter Hodge for MLB Debut

Chicago Cubs adjust bullpen roster amid injury and new debut

by Zain ul Abedin
SHARE
Chicago Cubs Call Up Porter Hodge for MLB Debut
© Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Chicago Cubs have recalled right-handed pitcher Porter Hodge from Triple-A Iowa. Fellow right-hander Colten Brewer lands on the 15-day injured list with tightness in his lower back. The move was first reported by Meaghan Montemurro of The Chicago Tribune on Twitter.

Hodge gets the call to simply bring a fresh arm to the bullpen. He'd make his Major League Baseball debut on the mound. Hodge was drafted in the 13th round of the 2019 MLB Draft by the Cubs. He is rated as the 19th best prospect in the Cubs system by Baseball America.

He checked in pre-2021 at 19th for Baseball America, 24th for FanGraphs and 24th in MLB.com. He's been a bit up-and-down performance-wise this year. Hodge began the year in a blaze at Double-A, tossing out four shutout innings, striking out eight while allowing just one hit and one walk in that time.

He quickly progressed to Triple-A Iowa.

Hodge's Triple-A Struggles

Since joining the Iowa Cubs, though, Hodge has found rough seas and posted a 6.55 ERA in 11 innings, allowing eight earned runs and 12 hits while issuing 11 walks.

Still, he has maintained an impressive strikeout rate, fanning close to one-third of the batters he has faced. Command issues have been a major bugaboo for Hodge, as he's posted a 12.9% walk rate going back to the 2022 campaign.

The scouting reports on Hodge have him listed at 6'4", 230 pounds, with the possibility of his fastball and slider being plus pitches. The command of those two pitches has prevented them from having the level of success they could potentially have.

If Hodge can lower his walk rate, he can secure a long-term spot in the Cubs' bullpen and potentially reach his ceiling as a high-leverage reliever. The Cubs signed Brewer, 31, to a minor league deal over the winter and selected his contract to the big leagues last month.

In 11 2/3 innings for manager Craig Counsell, Brewer has worked to a 3.09 ERA with a 12-to-4 strikeout-to-walk ratio and an excellent 48.4% ground-ball rate. The Cubs have not provided a timeline of when Brewer could potentially return to the roster.

So, now as the Cubs navigate through these moves in personnel, both the team and their fans are holding their breath and waiting to see just what Porter Hodge has up his sleeve in his Major League debut and just what role he might have in the Cubs' bullpen now and in the future.

Chicago Cubs
SHARE