CHICAGO - If anyone is doing the surprising at Wrigley Field, it's the manager.
Joe Maddon's unique traditions and quirky antics have become a staple of his style since taking over team back in 2015. But on Wednesday, even the coach was a little surprised about a move made for his lineup on Thursday.
That's when word came from the front office and minor league scouts that pitcher Jen-Ho Tseng would be elevated to the Cubs' roster and would be given the start on Thursday in the series finale against the Mets at Wrigley Field.
It will be the major league debut of the starter, who was the club's minor league pitcher of the year. In split time with Double-A Tennessee and Triple-A Iowa, Tseng was as combined 13-4 with a 2.54 ERA as he completed his fourth season in the Cubs' system.
A native of Taiwan, Tseng pitched for that country in the 2013 World Baseball Classic and signed with the Cubs soon after.
As he takes the mound for the first time with the team, he does so under the watchful eye of Maddon. While he may not have had the chance to see him live during the 2017 season, he certainly trusts those who have.
"I listen to minor league people, I listen to front offices, I listen to people who get to see people play that I don't get to see," said Maddon. "If your evaluators really believe strongly in this and your minor league people do, you listen to them."
Now at least he gets the chance to see for himself tonight.