Waiver Wire Rumba

Catcher Anthony Recker (Designated for Assignment yesterday to make room on the 40-man roster for RHP Carlos Gutierrez after Gutierrez was claimed off waivers from Minnesota) was claimed off waivers today by the New York Mets, and the Cubs have sent RHP Jason Berken (claimed off waivers from Baltimore in September), 2B Adrian Cardenas (claimed off waivers from Oakland last February), RHP Marcos Mateo (who was on the 60-day DL after undergoing TJS in June), and RHP Miguel Socolovich (claimed off waivers from Baltimore in August) outright to Iowa after the quartet cleared waivers. 

None of the four players outrighted today have Article XX-D rights (previously outrighted and/or at least three years of MLB Service Time or post-2012 "Super Two" status) so they can't be a free-agent immediately, but Cardenas, Mateo, and Socolovich will be MLB Rule 55 minor league free-agents (6YFA) automaticaly at 5 PM (Eastern) on the 5th day following the conclusion of the World Series.

With today's roster moves, the Cubs MLB Reserve List (AKA "40-man Roster") now stands at 37, with four more players (Matt Garza, Blake Parker, Ian Stewart, and Arodys Vizcaino) still on the 60-day Disabled List. (Players on the 60-day DL do not count against the 40-man roster limit; However, all players on the 60-day DL must be reinstated no later than 5 PM on the 5th day following the conclusion of the World Series).

Here are the Cubs post-2012 minor league FA eligibles as of today (subject to change):

Blake DeWitt, INF (filed)
Alex Hinshaw, LHP (filed)
Rodrigo Lopez, RHP (did not file)
Randy Wells, RHP (filed)


Jim Adduci, OF
Alfredo Amezaga, INF
Juan Apodaca, C
Jairo Asencio, RHP
Justin Berg, RHP 
Kyler Burke, LHP
Adrian Cardenas, 2B (was outrighted today)
Brian Esposito, C
Jeff Frazier, OF
Vladimir Frias, INF
Diory Hernandez, INF
Rodrigo Lopez, RHP (could have been Article XX-D FA - did not file)
Marcos Mateo, RHP (was outrighted today)
Seth McClung, RHP
Jonathon Mota, INF
Horacio Ramirez, LHP
Ryan Rowland-Smith, LHP
Nate Samson, INF
Miguel Socolovich, RHP (was outrighted today)
Alvaro Sosa, C (player-coach)
Matt Tolbert, INF

Carlos Figueroa, INF (player-coach - previously released by COL)
Michael de la Cruz, RHP (previously released by TEX):

Although Rodrigo Lopez did not file for free-agency per Article XX-D by the October 15th deadline, he will automatically be an MLB Rule 55 minor league free-agent (6YFA) on the 5th day following the conclusion of the World Series. (Only Article XX-D minor league free-agents have to actually elect free-agency). Why didn't Lopez file? Possibly because he might have waived his right to be an Article XX-D minor league free-agent when he was added to the Cubs 40-man roster (and 25-man roster) in April. Players who are eligible to be an Article XX-D minor league FA if outrighted can waive this right in advance as long as the player is outrighted within 45 days of giving his consent.

Any or all of the Cub minor league free-agents (including the three Article XX-D free-agents who did file earlier this month) could be re-signed by the Cubs to 2013 minor league contracts. A minor league player eligible to be an MLB Rule 55 minor league FA will sometimes agree to what's called a "Successor Contract" (with the actual contract to be tendered by the club no later than January 15th) prior to the player actually becoming a free-agent, while others might re-sign after first testing the free-agent waters to see what other opportunities might be out there.

Usually about half of the Cubs minor league free agents eventually re-sign. Marcos Mateo and Jonathan Mota are rehabbing from 2012 TJS, so they will almost certainly re-up so they can continue their rehab at Fitch Park (same thing happened with Justin Berg last off-season). Mota (who can play any position) could return as a player-coach at Iowa next season. Others might be offered a pay raise and/or an NRI to Spring Training to entice them to return in 2013.

One thing to keep in mind is that any minor league free-agent signed prior to the Rule 5 Draft is eligible for selection, and the Cubs actually lost a player (INF Jason Smith) in the Rule 5 Draft a few years ago after signing him as a minor league FA a couple of weeks earlier.  

Manuel Corpas, Justin Germano, Joe Mather, Blake Parker, Ian Stewart, and Chris Volstad are the others presently on the Cubs MLB 40-man roster who are good candidates to get outrighted, released, or non-tendered over the coming days & weeks to make room on the 40 for MLB free-agents or waiver claims or for minor leaguers the Cubs might wish to add to their 40-man roster to keep them from being a 6YFA free-agent (like Kyler Burke) or because the player would otherwise be eligible for selection in the MLB Rule 5 Draft (probably Trey McNutt, Nick Struck, Christian Villanueva, and Logan Watkins).

Corpas, Stewart, and Volstad are eligible for salary arbitration, so they will almost certainly be non-tendered on 11/30 if they aren't dropped from the 40-man roster earlier. (The MLB contract tender date is normally December 2nd, but it was moved up to November 30th this year because 12/2 falls on a Sunday in 2012).

Shawn Camp is the only player presently on the Cubs 40-man roster who will be an Article XX-B MLB free-agent after the conclusion of the World Series, and that will open up one more slot on the 40.

If the Cubs do re-sign Camp (and Theo supposedly said the Cubs could be interested in doing that), it will probably be to a non-guaranteed 2013 minor league contract (albeit for "big league money"--like maybe $1.5M) and an NRI to Spring Training (probably with a player option to "opt-out" at the end of Spring Training if he doesn't make the 25-man Opening Day roster).


Recent comments

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  • I'm guessing 3/30 and all the two foot long hot dogs you can eat didn't work


  • Yes! In a 12-way tie for first!

  • Shit.

    Blew my prediction! I had them signing Zimmerman and trading for another arm.

  • Damn wanted Zimmermann

  • Yeah, this market. Remember when Ted Lilly signed a 4/$40m with the Cubs? It was like "Well, I guess if you can throw a ball, that's what the 3 and 4 starters are all getting." I'm glad I'm not a GM. Of course, they're spending our money...

  • in this market that seems like a decent deal relative to the market.

    given that d.price will probably get 30m-ish a year, 22m for 29yo zimm doesn't seem bad. i wouldn't complain about him suiting up for the cubs. one less option gone...

  • Zimmermann 5/$110m with Tigers. Youch.

    And the updated predications page: http://bit.ly/1NWlEek

  • Cubs 3B Christian Villanueva (who is out of minor league options) is hitting 358/464/500 for Obregon in the Mexican Pacific League (LMP), and is leading the LMP in OBP, is second in BAvg and walks, is seventh in SLG, and is tied for 8th in HR. He also has struck out only 16 times in 175 PA. 

  • CTSteve, thanks for spelling Zimmermann correctly. We don't need another first baseman.

  • The media has linked Cueto and the Cubs approximately zero times this winter. I'm thinking there's just not a lot of interest there on the Cubs' part. It seems unlikely.

    If the Cubs miss on Price, Grienke, and Zimmerman, they will aim for a mid-rotation starter via free agency or trade. However, I think this scenario also significantly boosts the odds that they extend Arrieta.

  • The Tigers are going after Zimmermann and the Red Sox will be throwing money at Price. Bringing Cueto back to the NL with the Cubs is looking like a serious possibility. Thoughts?

  • Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe in the financial impact to the Red Sox for not signing Jon Lester early in the free agent process:

    It will be interesting to ultimately add up the cost of letting Jon Lester go.

    The Red Sox botched up their negotiations with Lester in during spring training of 2014, making an initial offer of $70 million that was roughly $40 million short of what it should have been. Talks broke down and Lester was traded in July.

  • Wait...you're flip-flopping again?!

    Is this legal? What is the rule here on opining definitively and then changing your mind?

    I am not only surprised at your declaration, but Cutler's better 2015 showing. I don't get it - he went through Martz, Turner, Trestman, Kromer, and now Gase...and he is still here! And. he'll be here mext year too.

  • Happ signs w Jays

    Morsi saying Price won't be a Jay

  • needs more d.beeler and e.jokisch

  • As an Illinois tax payer I appreciate what they r doing