Cubs Acquire Henry Rodriguez from Nats
The Cubs have acquired 26-year old Venezuelan flame-throwing RHRP Henry Rodriguez from the Washington Nationals for minor league RHP Ian Dickson.
Dickson was the Cubs 35th round draft pick out of Lafayette College in 2011, and was used as both a starter and a reliever at Kane County this season, posting an ugly 6.88 ERA and 1.50 WHIP in 35.1 IP and 11 Games (3 GS). He was a candidate to get demoted to Boise (and probably released post-2013) if he hadn't been traded.
Rodriguez was Designated for Assignment by the Nats on June 4th to make room on their 40-man roster for LHP Ian Kroll, so they had until Friday (6/14) to either trade him, release him, or send him outright to the minors. However, because it takes two days to get a player through waivers, Washington really only had until 2 PM (EDT) Wednesday (today) to trade him. (He was NOT placed on waivers, otherwise he could not have been traded).
Despite the 102+ MPH fastball, Rodriguez has struggled big-time with control this season (16 BB in 18 IP, and a career 98 BB in 144.2 IP), and that's probably why the Nationals lost their patience with him.
Rodriguez is out of minor league options, and he will be (first time) eligible for salary arbitration post-2013. NOTE: Darwin Barney, Cody Ransom, James Russell, Jeff Samardzija, Nate Schierholtz, Luis Valbuena, and Travis Wood are the other players presently on the Cubs 40-man roster who will be arbitration-eligible post-2013 (and Julio Borbon will probably be eligible for salary arbitration as a "Super Two").
The Cubs will need to drop a player from the 25-man roster when Rodriguez reports, and that will probably just be a matter of placing RHP Zach Putnam (sore elbow) on the 15-day DL.
RHP Eduardo Sanchez (who was Designated for Assignment to make room on the Cubs MLB 40-man roster for H. Rodriguez) does NOT have the right to elect free-agency if outrighted (he has not been outrighterd previously in his career, he has not accrued three years of MLB Service Time, and he was not a "Super Two" player post-2012). However, if he is outrighted he would automatically become an MLB Rule 55 minor league FA (so-called "six-year minor league free-agent") at 5 PM on the 5th day following the conclusion of the 2013 World Series, unless he agrees to a 2014 minor league successor contract prior to the deadline, or is added back to an MLB 40-man roster prior to the conclusion of the 2013 MLB regular season.
C-1B-3B Steve Clevenger (strained oblique) is eligible to be reintstated from the Cubs 60-day DL tomorrow (Thursday 6/13), and as much as Manager Dale Sveum likes the flexibility provided by having a 3rd catcher on the roster, it does not look like there will be room for Clevenger on the 25-man roster at this time. So look for the Cubs to reinstate Clevenger from the DL and then option him to Iowa. (He will get recalled if anything happens to Welington Castillo or Dioner Navarro, or whenever Navarro gets traded), Another player will need to be removed from the 40-man roster when Clevenger is reinstated, and that could very well be (that man) Putnam again, who could be transferred to the 60-day DL after spending one day on the 15-day DL.
MLB Article XX-B free-agents signed to Major League contracts after last season received automatic "no trade" rights through June 15th, so therefore Scott Baker, Shawn Camp, Scott Feldman, Edwin Jackson, Carlos Villanueva, Dioner Navarro, and Scott Hairston can be traded without having to give their permission beginning this coming Sunday. NOTE: Carlos Marmol and Alfonso Soriano also have "no trade" rights, but their "no trade" rights are contractural (Marmol through the 2013 season, and Soriano through 2014).
2nd in defensive WAR, NL.
6th in NL in RBI
Go complain about something else, like, "thet never play good against the good teams", or some other shit.
Addy really has trouble breaking through .250 BA -- after his hot streak got him to .251, he has gone 1-for-17.
Thank goodness for Jansen's 2 WP on Friday -- otherwise this would have been a sweep.
There seems to be a direct correlation with overconfidence in the Cubs offense against mediocre/young pitchers and really poor offense against mediocre/young pitchers. So, let's fear the Pirate pitchers!
Rizzo due for a power surge -- one HR in August so far. He truly does hit them in bunches.
Sometimes I'm not as supportive of Cahill as maybe I should be. There, I said it.
Rough 8th inning all around -- HBP, Cahill error, Javy's poor decision.
Oh well - given that the Cubs didn't look like they were going to score, it's better to lose in 9 innings, save the bullpen and get changed for the PJ trip home.
Baez still learning
heyward with his 3rd multi-hit game since the all-star break (all in august)...2nd in the past 3 games during his 7 game hitting streak.
he's gone from flirting with a sub-.300 ob% to nearing .310 ob% in 3 games (1 game was just a 1 for 1 pinch hit appearance). all 5 hits in the past 3 games have come in a row...neat.
stewart with 7Ks through 3ip...of course.
that 10-13 mph difference in his fastball/change is working today...and they're swinging at his crappy slider.
brock stewart...steven brault...fun times for the cubs hitters vs allegedly competitive teams...maybe.
Maddon would have started three lefties against the Dodgers, Montgomery, Zastryzny and Lester, except that he doesn't have the juice to do that. No manager does. Maddon has a boss, Epstein (and probably Hoyer, too), who gave him a starting rotation of five guys including Hammel. Maddon was asked yesterday about the starting group for next year and basically said, Not my call, that's why I drive away in my RV in the summer and occasionally check in, etc.
video of Maddon.
always nice that he actually tries to honestly answer questions. Does mention that he wanted to give Zastr? a chance in a meaningful spot rather than a mop-up role.
#Cubs Maddon: "I'm not going to make up an excuse for why I did what I did. It has nothing to do with lack of confidence" ... "It was the right thing to do today based on what I saw, what their lineup looked like and Rob Z.'s availability." #Cubs
Hammel not particularly understanding of getting pulled out...as he should. Be curious what Maddon had to say. All I can think of is is keeping arms fresh and maybe wanting to see if Zastr? is worth considering for the playoffs and how he'd do against the Dodgers.
Heyward, Russell, Baez, Bryant, Ross in particular...although Bryant's a bit hard to judge with all the positions.
Fowler and Rizzo in the top half of the NL for their positions as well (per fangraphs)...Zobrist right at the halfway cutoff for 2b in the NL.
I'm sure some luck is involved too, but the Cubs and Maddon knew what they were doing.