Projected Cubs 2021 Spring Training Roster


There will no doubt be trades, MLB and minor league free-agent signings, waiver claims, perhaps even a Rule 5 Draft pick, some non-tenders on 12/2, and maybe one or more Cubs minor leaguers will get taken in the Rule 5 Draft, but - AS THINGS STAND RIGHT NOW - here is the preliminary projected Cubs Spring Training roster:  
40 players presently are on MLB RESERVE LIST (roster is full)

Last updated 2-5-2021
* bats or throws left
# bats both

Cory Abbott 
Jason Adam
Adbert Alzolay
* Andrew Chafin
Zach Davies 
Gray Fenter
Kyle Hendricks 
Jonathan Holder
Craig Kimbrel
Dillon Maples
* Brailyn Marquez
Tyson Miller 
Alec Mills
James Norwood
Manuel Rodriguez 
* Kyle Ryan
* Justin Steele
Kohl Stewart
Robert Stock
Keegan Thompson
Duane Underwood Jr
* Brad Wieck 
Rowan Wick 
Trevor Williams
Dan Winkler

Joe Biagini  
James Bourque
Craig Brooks
* Rex Brothers
* Burl Carraway 
Juan Gamez 
Ryan Jensen 
Jake Jewell 
Trevor Kelley 
* Luis Lugo 
Trevor Megill
Dakota Mekkes
Shelby Miller
* Adam Morgan 
* Jack Patterson 
Duncan Robinson
Michael Rucker  
* Wyatt Short 
Riley Thompson 
* Jerry Vasto 
Joe Wieland


Miguel Amaya
Willson Contreras
Austin Romine 

# Taylor Gushue 
P. J. Higgins 
Tyler Payne 


# Sergio Alcantara
Javy Baez  
David Bote
Kris Bryant
Nico Hoerner
Christopher Morel
* Anthony Rizzo
# Ildemaro Vargas

Abiatal Avelino 
Matt Duffy 
Trent Giambrone 
* Alfonso Rivas
Chase Strumpf
Patrick Wisdom


Phillip Ervin 
# Ian Happ
* Jason Heyward
* Joc Pederson

Brennen Davis
* Donnie3 Dewees 
Michael Hermosillo
Eddy Julio Martinez 
* Nick Martini 
* Ian Miller 
* Rafael Ortega 


[ ]

In reply to by Cubster

imagine being so toxic that you go from a no-doubt 1st or 2nd year HOF'r to having to try for it in your 10th year...and then imagine doubling down on the toxicity every chance you get a chance to redeem yourself.

every time he's called out, even for minor stuff, he piles on more and then complains that people that have an issue with him are "cancelling" him for no good reason.

he deleted a slew of "those people that stormed the capital are great people" posts pre-election so he has some kind of self-awareness in that skull of his somewhere.

...speaking of toxic (and being a perpetual complainer about being a victim)...corey black is still a cub.  he might want to scrub that picture of Proud Boys leader Enrique Tarrio off his Twitter page at some point if he gets close to the bigs...along with a slew of other social media things he's yet to delete.

WSCR online reporting that the Cubs are going to watch lefty Carlos Rondon pitch. They desperately need another lefty that breaks down with the regularity of my Comcast service. 

joc pederson is a cub...

i wonder if bryant is about to leave or if pederson is a "4th OF'r" that will see a lot of ABs in LF/RF while bryant occasionally covers 3rd...

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

1/7m on pederson.

the cubs slightly upgrade the defense and save 3m compared to schwarber...meh...pretty much a wash on whole when it comes to pros/cons of actual expected production.

i dunno if that 3m actually matters, but hopefully they can make it matter.

[ ]

In reply to by crunch

Pederson does strike out less often and is a little better defender, so I do think he improves on Schwarber somewhat (for apparently less money). But he's worse against LHP so they have to be willing to strictly platoon him. 

[ ]

In reply to by bradsbeard

Agreed. As long as they're not really trying, it's pretty much sure Joc, go ahead and hit .130 against LHP with a .300 SLG. If theyre better than they have any real right to be, he either will have shocked everyone and hit LHP or they'll say "we gave it a shot, back to a platoon for you."

Joc in at 1 yr/ $7M plus incentives. He's being given the chance to be a starter. Is he still able to play CF?

cards get nolan arenado.

he's under contract until 2026 (supposedly 2027 with another season tacked on to make the trade happen), but has a 2021 opt out...2022 opt out being staying intact after the trade to STL...commish will have to sign off on the deal.

it seems arenado agreed to waive the no-trade from a position of strength by getting his concessions.

supposedly a significant amount of cash is going to STL from COL, too.

there's a lot more "extra" information compared to normal trades involved in this one and things may not be 100% correct on the early leaks.

carlos rondon returns to the wsox...there's one "broken goods" cubs target off the board.

i still got my money on jake arrieta...jeff samardzija in the mix, too.

[ ]

In reply to by crunch

Trevor Williams has minor league options left and he hasn't accrued enough MLB Service Time to reject an Optional Assignment, so the Cubs could option him to AAA if he isn't one of the 13 pitchers on the Opening Day 26-man roster. 

Shelby Miller is different in that it's pretty much MLB or bust for him, so the Cubs would probably give him the first shot at the #5 SP slot, unless T. Williams clearly out-performs S. Miller in Spring Training Cactus League games.

If Williams is clearly the better choice, the Cubs can just release Miller and pay him the termination fee (his contract is not guaranteed, so he would get 45 days pay -- which is about $200K -- if he is released prior to MLB Opening Day).    

"Jesse Rogers of ESPN reports that a reunion between the Cubs and Jake Arrieta is "doubtful."

Rogers reported on Friday that the Cubs had interest in a possible reunion with Arrieta, but a couple of days appears to have changed things. He notes that Arrieta's salary request is not in line with what Chicago is likely wanting to spend."

yeah, the cubs don't got that stupid large jake arrieta loot to throw around.

wonder what he's looking for, though.  if he can manage to get more than 5m, good for him.

There will be at least three Millers at Cubs Spring Training (Shelby, Tyson, and Ian), so along with soft-tossing SP, apparently the Cubs have found yet another arcane market inefficiency to exploit. 

cubs fans: can we get miller?  can we grab brad miller?  oh...maybe we can we get andrew miller?

ricketts family: no, we have plenty of miller at home.

miller at home: shelby, tyson, and ian...

so we're a week out from tom ricketts "expanding the budget" and so far we've gotten joc pederson and andrew chafin for around 10m combined.

f'n austin romine's 1.5m contract was the big signing until joc got signed...and that's not exactly an exciting signing (though it's not trash).

i'm not expecting trevor bauer or anything on that scale, but i was hoping there would be more to this budget expansion...still time to surprise, i guess.

I wonder when we're going to see the full list of NRI. It's usually end of January but still nothing so far

[ ]

In reply to by Hagsag

they will probably ask the parents of players to volunteer while the rest of the parents take turns bringing cookies and kool aid for the post-game spread.

the money saved will benefit the organization greatly...maybe some new signage at the hotel zachary or they could build another digital advertising scoreboard on top of one of the existing digital advertising scoreboards...bud light presents the garden claw gold cubs scoreboard.

i am beating the living hell out of this dead horse.  still not tired...i could go all season.

they will probably ask the parents of players to volunteer...

At this point, Mike Bryant (KB's dad) might be the better hitter.

cubs claim sergio alcantara off waivers from DET...can play SS/2nd and he's trying out 3rd a little bit (big plus arm).

practically no power, and only mildly above average with speed...did HR in his first MLB at bat, though.

not a bad pickup, but at his best he's bench or injury replacement talent.

[ ]

In reply to by Cubster

they're giving up a bit of bat upside for better D + arm.  schrock's not got power, but there's a lot more upside than alcantara, who's a line drive hitter at best.

schrock's D (good), arm (meh), and the better bat upside vs alcantara's D (very good), arm (well above average), and an extremely questionable bat without power.

MLB is making changes to the official baseball in order to make it more consistent in it's production, the result being a less bouncy/hitter-friendly baseball.

also 5 more teams (10 total) will be using humidors.

lot of good news for pitchers today.

it's "PECOTA day"...for those that care about this kind of thing.  i'm not a big fan of it, but it is what it is and people do find it interesting.

cubs 2nd place (85.1 W - 76.9 L) behind MIL (88.8 W - 73.2 L)

dodgers with 102.9 W

"As part of the health and safety protocols announced by MLB on Tuesday, in the event of a COVID-19 outbreak, teams will be allowed to add to their active roster temporarily without having to later make 40-man roster moves when the COVID-impacted players return."

also, opening day rosters will be 26 (expanding to 28 in september).  7-inning double-headers is on for 2021 and that "runner on 2nd" thing for extra innings is happening, too.

[ ]

In reply to by Cubster

Being that this is simply a Cubs PR piece, should I be worried that we're being set up for Willson Contreras being traded soon with this line:

  "The idea that Amaya could handle the majority of starts at catcher for the Cubs in 2021 and produce average results in his age 22 season is real."

[ ]

In reply to by Sonicwind75

Although I believe he is a future MLB front-line catcher, I think it is highly unrealistic to believe that Miguel Amaya could be MLB-ready anytime in 2021, short of a September call-up to be the #3 catcher when rosters expand to 28. Even 2022 would probably be a stretch, although that would be more possible, depending on how he progresses in all phases of his game in 2021.

"Patrick Mooney @PJ_Mooney
After closing deals with Joc Pederson, Trevor Williams and Andrew Chafin, Jed Hoyer anticipates the Cubs will add more major-league payroll before spring training: “A number of factors allowed us to sort of move from the lower end of that range to the higher end.”

neat...well, maybe...i guess we'll see...

Jake Marisnick.... okay. He's uh.... fine?

 I hope this doesn't push Ervin off the roster. I solidly prefer his talents to Marisnick.

First with Schwarber >>>> Pederson, now Almora >>>> Marisnick. Twice swapping out a player for a very similar player and/or marginal upgrade for an almost identical contract (in $ and yrs).  That is interesting to me... Frustrations about spending, team debt load, etc. aside, I want to give credit to Jed Hoyer for pulling the trigger on those deals.  For whatever reason, there was something with KS & AA that didn't have them convinced for 2021  (which kills me to type b/c I love Schwarber's swing).  Making those swaps involves quite a bit of swallowing of ego & shows a willingness to make tough calls (especially with Schwarber's 2016 story endearing himself to fans - myself included).  

the mets and cubs are supposedly talking about k.bryant again...because of course they are.

Per Jon Heyman: Arrieta had higher offers elsewhere but loved the idea of a reunion with the Cubs, and pursued it

Funny comment of the day from Phillie fan: commenting on a pic of Jake in a Cub uniform: "crappy photoshop job of Jake's uniform."

The Jake Arrieta contract has been officially filed with the MLB Office & has been approved, and Kyle Ryan goes to the CoViD-related IL (which is 40-man roster exempt) to make room for Arrieta on the 40. There is no minimum or maximum limit on the number of days a player can remain on the CoViD-related IL. 

[ ]

In reply to by Arizona Phil

Jake Arrieta gets $4M in 2021 and a $10M mutual option or $2M buy-out in 2022, with $1M in performance bonuses ($250K each for 150 IP, 160 IP, 170 IP, and 180 IP), and also the automatic Article XX-B "no trade" through June 15th.  

So Arrieta ($10M), Pederson ($10M), and Chafin ($5.25M) will have fairly substantial salaries in 2022 if both the player and the club exercise their part of the mutual option (which rarely happens), but the buy-outs ($2M for Arrieta, $2.5M for Pederson, and $500K for Chafin) aren't that bad if the Cubs decline the option. 

Could have an option year remaining.  Bleacher Nation walked it back, per the link above.

Cubs MLB Roster

Cubs Organizational Depth Chart
40-Man Roster Info

36 players are on the MLB RESERVE LIST (four slots are open)  

Last updated 12-2-2022
* bats or throws left
# bats both

Adbert Alzolay
Javier Assad 
Ben Brown
Jeremiah Estrada
Kyle Hendricks
Codi Heuer 
* Brandon Hughes
Ryan Jensen
Caleb Kilian 
Mark Leiter Jr
Ethan Roberts 
Manuel Rodriguez
Michael Rucker
Adrian Sampson
* Justin Steele 
Marcus Stroman
Keegan Thompson
Erich Uelmen 
Hayden Wesneski
Rowan Wick

Miguel Amaya
Yan Gomes
P. J. Higgins 

Nico Hoerner
Nick Madrigal
* Miles Mastrobuoni
* Zach McKinstry
Christopher Morel
* Alfonso Rivas
Patrick Wisdom

Kevin Alcantara 
Alexander Canario
Brennen Davis
# Ian Happ
Seiya Suzuki 
Nelson Velazquez


Minor League Rosters
Rule 5 Draft 
Minor League Free-Agents