Meet Cubs’ Carl Edwards Jr. in L.A., and then give him the damn ball

WASHINGTON – Carl Edwards Jr. had two critical rough spots during the Division Series against the Nationals.

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

Even after walking both batters he faced in an four-run eighth inning that buried the Cubs in their Game 4 loss, Edwards spoke with confidence, wanted the ball again and even made it clear he expected to get it against the Dodgers in the next round of the playoffs.

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

Carl Edwards Jr. after the eighth inning of Game 3 against the Nats.

Give him credit. He got it right.

But give him even more credit for what it says about his confidence and maybe even his future — both this postseason and moving forward in his career role with the team.

“I love it,” manager 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 Harper [that tied Game 2], he came back and had a really good outing right after that.”

That was Game 3, when Edwards struck out Harper swinging at a strikeout leading off the eighth during the Cubs’ 2-1 victory.

“It just didn’t play out [Thursday],” 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.”

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Email: gwittenmyer@suntimes.com