Cubs’ Marcus Stroman on first children’s book: ‘If I get an idea … I put it right into motion’

PITTSBURGH — Cubs right-hander Marcus Stroman released the cover of his first book, loosely based on his childhood and written for 8- to 12-year-olds, Friday on Twitter.

Stroman’s interests outside of baseball are wide-ranging, from podcasting to wine. He has started two clothing brands, with the second, SHUGO, set for release in November. This three-part book series, published by Simon & Schuster, is his latest venture.

”If I get an idea and I want to do something, I do it,” Stroman said in a conversation with the Sun-Times. ”I don’t wait. I put it right into motion. I have an awesome team around me of people that help bring all of my ideas into fruition. . . . I’ve been very involved, which has been awesome. So I’m excited to see the reaction once it’s out.”

The first book of the series, titled ”The Grip,” is already available to pre-order will go on sale Jan. 31, 2023.

”It’s loosely based around my upbringing as a kid,” Stroman said. ”Young minority kid coming up, divorced parents, playing sports, going through school dealing with everything that young kids are gonna be dealing with — from bullies to juggling schoolwork and homework to living at your mom’s house, then going to your dad’s house being in a divorced household. So I’m excited because it’s truly geared toward mental adversity and mental health, as well.”

When asked to imagine his infant son, Kaisomeday picking up the book to read, Stroman took a moment to think of what he would want him to take away from it.

”Just to always be himself, to chase his dreams passionately, to never let anybody get in the way of his dreams,” Stroman said. ”I feel like a lot of the time in this world, especially with social media, there’s so many people who work against you. Or there’s so many ways that you can give in to people and not allow yourself to truly chase what you want to do in life. So I think it’s extremely important to keep a small group of people who love you and who are going to support you.”

Stroman said the next two books in the series also will be semi-autobiographical. But while he has a few ideas, their specific subject matter has yet to be decided.

A couple of months before ”The Grip” comes out, Stroman has a different launch party planned. Pre-orders for SHUGO ZERO cleats and trainers, in three color combinations, went live on this week. Stroman said he’s targeting the first or second week of November for the launch party.

Injury updates

Left-hander Brandon Hugheswho rolled his ankle on the mound Thursday, was still a little sore, manager David Ross said.

”He said, ‘I’ll tape it up and be ready to go,’ ” Ross said. ”So we’ll see. That’s a good mentality for him to have.”

Catcher Willson Contreras (sprained left ankle) went through a full slate of baseball activities, according to the team. That included on-field batting practice and running the bases. The Cubs haven’t revealed a timeline for his return.

Left-hander Drew Smyly played light catch. The Cubs skipped his last start because of fatigue in his left shoulder.

Left-hander Justin Steele (strained lower back) threw a light bullpen session Wednesday and is scheduled for another bullpen in the next couple of days. V

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