jersey cubs fan wrote:does this have nothing to do with getting Hoerner eligible for playoffs?
It appears that was probably the main reason.
A player who doesn't meet said criteria for postseason eligibility can still be added to a team's roster in the postseason via petition to the Commissioner's Office if the player was in the organization on Aug. 31 and is replacing someone who is on the injured list and has served the minimum amount of time required for activation. (For example, a player on the 10-day injured list who has been on it for at least 10 days, or a player who has been on the 60-day injured list for at least 60 days.)
Screwing Russell over is a nice side effect, though. I'm sure Edith Cox is out somewhere bemoaning that that's thousands of dollars that could've gone to his children and saying the Cubs are in the wrong for this.