(CBS) The Cubs unveiled their 25-man roster for the National League Divisional Series with one main surprise.
Chicago included outfielder Leonys Martin on the roster but left reliever Hector Rondon off of it. As many expected, right-hander John Lackey is also on the roster and will be used out of the bullpen if needed.
Martin will serve as a pinch-runner and defensive replacement. He hit just .172 this season. The thought process of including Martin was to potentially manufacture a run on the basepaths against a stout Nationals pitching staff that’s led by aces Stephen Strasburg and Max Scherzer.
Rondon had a 4.24 ERA for the season but had been strong of late, recording 10 straight scoreless appearances.
The Cubs have two catchers in Willson Contreras and Alex Avila, meaning Kyle Schwarber would serve as the emergency catcher if needed.
The Cubs took 11 pitchers and 14 position players. So they’ll have six position players available off the bench.
As expected, reliever Justin Grimm was left off the NLDS roster.
Game 1 between the Cubs and Nationals is Friday evening in Washington D.C. The Cubs’ Kyle Hendricks opposes the Nationals’ Strasburg.
First pitch is at 6:31 p.m. and can be heard on 670 The Score, which begins its pregame coverage at 5:30 p.m.
Carl Edwards Jr.
Albert Almora Jr.
Tommy La Stella