Con­fi­dent Ed­wards: ‘ See you guys in L. A.’

Chicago Sun-Times - - CUBS EXTRA - BY GOR­DON WITTENMYER Staff Re­porter Con­tribut­ing: Made­line Ken­ney Fol­low me on Twit­ter @ GDubCub. Email: gwit­ten­myer@sun­times.com

WASH­ING­TON — Cubs re­liever Carl Ed­wards Jr. had two crit­i­cal rough spots dur­ing the Na­tional League Di­vi­sion Se­ries against the Na­tion­als.

He also had a sig­na­ture mo­ment in between and has the 10th in­ning of Game 7 of the World Se­ries on his ré­sumé. And if you don’t think he’s in line to be the Cubs’ closer some­day, then you haven’t been watch­ing the way man­ager Joe Mad­don uses him or lis­tened to Ed­wards talk.

Even af­ter walk­ing both bat­ters he faced in a four- run eighth in­ning that buried the Cubs in their Game 4 loss Wed­nes­day, Ed­wards spoke with con­fi­dence, said he wanted the ball again and even made it clear he ex­pected to get it against the Dodgers in the NL Cham­pi­onship Se­ries.

‘‘ I know for a fact that [ righthander Kyle Hen­dricks] is go­ing to be on,’’ Ed­wards said just be­fore the Cubs’ char­ter flight late Wed­nes­day to Wash­ing­ton for the de­ci­sive Game 5 on Thurs­day. ‘‘ He’s just go­ing to go out there, we’re go­ing to have fun and we’ll see you guys in L. A.’’

It didn’t mat­ter so much whether he was right or wrong.

‘‘ I love it,’’ Mad­don said. ‘‘ You have to have a real short mem­ory to be re­ally good at that par­tic­u­lar job. He’s been good. Even af­ter the home run by [ Bryce] Harper [ that tied Game 2], he came back and had a re­ally good out­ing right af­ter that.’’

That was in Game 3, when Ed­wards struck out Harper swing­ing to lead off the eighth dur­ing the Cubs’ 2- 1 vic­tory.

‘‘ It just didn’t play out [ Wed­nes­day],’’ Mad­don said. ‘‘ This kid’s go­ing to be so good over the next sev­eral years. You have to help guide him through it at this mo­ment. I love the fact that he does eject neg­a­tiv­ity rather quickly.

‘‘ He’s go­ing to be re­ally good. He’s al­ready re­ally good.’’

FitBit in­trigue

Hit­ting coach John Mallee was ac­cused on so­cial me­dia of cheat­ing for us­ing what ap­peared to be a smart watch dur­ing Game 4, but he quickly was cleared af­ter Ma­jor League Baseball con­ducted a brief in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

A video posted on Twit­ter showed Mallee sit­ting on the Cubs’ bench and tap­ping the watch on his wrist twice. Tyler Wil­liams, who posted the video, spec­u­lated Mallee was mess­ing with an Ap­ple Watch.

MLB in­ves­ti­gated the de­vice, ac­cord­ing to the Wash­ing­ton Post, and found it was a FitBit that wasn’t con­nected to the in­ter­net. MLB de­ter­mined the Cubs didn’t vi­o­late any rules.

Ap­ple Watches have stirred up con­tro­versy in MLB this sea­son. Two teams have found them­selves in hot water af­ter some­one in their dugout was spot­ted with one.

The Red Sox were caught steal­ing signs from the Yan­kees with an Ap­ple Watch, and the Di­a­mond­backs got in trou­ble for us­ing the same de­vice, although it was de­ter­mined they weren’t steal­ing signs with it.

In Mallee’s case, the FitBit seemed to be mal­func­tion­ing, which was why he was tap­ping it, Cubs staff said.

Com­mis­sioner Rob Man­fred sent a let­ter to MLB teams that said: ‘‘ All 30 clubs have been no­ti­fied that fu­ture vi­o­la­tions of this type will be sub­ject to more se­ri­ous sanc­tions, in­clud­ing the pos­si­ble loss of draft picks.’’

An­thony Rizzo picks off Jose Lo­ba­ton on a throw from Will­son Con­tr­eras dur­ing the eighth in­ning Thurs­day at Na­tion­als Park. | AP

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