The Cubs have sent RHP Jeff Gray outright to Iowa. This moves leaves three slots open on the 40-man roster, two of which will be taken when LHP John Grabow (knee surgery) and RHP Angel Guzman (shoulder surgery) are reactivated from the 60-day DL.
The 28-year old Gray was acquired from the Oakland A's last December 3rd along with 1B-OF Matt Spencer and RHP Ronny Morla in exchange for INF Aaron Miles, IF-OF-C Jake Fox, and cash considerations.
Gray suffered a groin strain at Fitch Park in the very early days of Spring Training 2010 and never was able to get it together, going 1-0 with a 6.75 ERA and 1.82 WHIP in seven games (9.1 IP) for the Cubs, and 3-1 with one save, a 5.66 ERA and and 1.71 WHIP, allowing 45 hits and 15/25 BB/K in 25 games (35.0 IP) at AAA Iowa.
Gray would have been out of minor league options if he had remained on the Cubs 40-man roster going into the 2011 season. He is eligible to be a Rule 55 minor league free-agent if he does not sign a 2011 minor league contract with the Cubs.
In other Cubs minor league roster news, IF-C Jonathan Mota (who was eligible to be a Rule 55 minor league FA post-2010) has signed a 2011 minor league contract with the Cubs, and INF George Matheus was released.