Maples is an option to begin the season in the Cubs' bullpen with several other relievers dealing with injuries, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports.

Brandon Morrow (elbow), Tony Barnette (shoulder) and Xavier Cedeno (wrist) have all been ruled out for the start of the season, and Pedro Strop (hamstring) has also been slowed down a bit in camp. The injuries could open up a spot for Maples in the bullpen, though of course he could be shipped down to Triple-A when some of the aforementioned relievers get healthy. Maples had a 42.4 percent strikeout rate at Triple-A last season, but his 22 percent walk rate will need to improve if he wants to find consistent success.

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