Hoyer, Cubs considering WC roster options

Hoyer, Cubs considering WC roster options

CINCINNATI -- The Cubs will have discussions Sunday and Monday about finalizing the postseason roster for next Wednesday's National League Wild Card Game presented by Budweiser, and they are trying hard not to overthink the process.

"Your decisions are fairly defined," Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer said Thursday. "There's only so many things you can do with the roster. Because it's one game, you can spend a lot of time thinking through it. There's a tendency to overthink it and think about every permutation. When you get too far in the weeds, you try to remember that."

Hoyer said he recalled adding Curt Leskanic to the Red Sox's roster in 2004, even though the reliever had not been used in high-leverage situations. Yet, there was Leskanic on the mound in an extra-inning game with the score tied, and the Red Sox facing elimination if they lost.

"That's the nature of these rosters -- you always have to assume anyone you put on the roster will be put in a huge spot," Hoyer said. "It feels the game always finds that person."

The Cubs have had preliminary discussions regarding the roster, but the final configuration does not have to be submitted until the day of the game.

"We're just doing one thing at a time, man," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said Thursday. "That's how I'm looking at it."

Jake Arrieta will start the Wild Card game against the Pirates, and the Cubs will likely have one more starting pitcher on the roster. Then, it will come down to how many position players compared to how many relievers. The Cubs also know their opponents well, having played their playoff-bound Central Division foes 19 times each.

"You take every series real seriously in the postseason, and you try not to leave any stone unturned," Hoyer said. "When it's one game, it consolidates all of that decision making into nine innings."

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.