MORE: Watch ‘ChangeUp,’ a new MLB live whiparound show on DAZNChicago’s bullpen has underwhelmed at times this season, particularly on the back end. With Brandon Morrow injured, the Cubs haven’t had a true closer, and their top setup man in recent years, Carl Edwards Jr., has slumped to a 6.23 ERA.Kimbrel gives the team an arm to rival Brewers left-hander Josh Hader as the best late-inning option in the NL Central, and someone equipped to handle the pressures of September and October. That provides immediate reassurance for fans on the North Side. In any case, Kimbrel will soon be the best reliever on his new team because, well, that’s just what he does. He has been the No. 1 bullpen man on every roster since his rookie campaign. His career ERA is 1.91, and he has racked up 333 saves in just nine seasons.Hall of Fame pitcher John Smoltz — who was a dominant closer in his own right for a four-year stretch — said he believes the Kimbrel addition could turn the tide in Chicago’s favor in the NL Central.”(They) were missing that ‘it’ factor,” Smoltz said on DAZN’s “ChangeUp.” “They’ve got that now . . . where it’s like, ‘OK we’ve got a guy for the end of the game.'”He’s not going to pitch in the seventh, he’s not going to pitch in the eighth. He’s pretty much locked down in the ninth.” Craig Kimbrel is now the presumed Cubs closer after reportedly agreeing to a three-year, $43 million contract with Chicago on Wednesday night. He’d gone the entire offseason and the first part of the regular season without a deal despite being widely regarded as one of the best relief pitchers in baseball.Can he perform at a high level right away given his extended absence from the mound? It might take a couple of weeks to become acclimated to MLB rigors again, but one would assume he has adhered to an extended offseason throwing program. It might even have been best for him to receive an extended break given the 10 2/3 high-stress innings he threw in last year’s postseason after the Red Sox rode him hard down the stretch.