Cubs Acquire Coello from Red Sox

The Cubs acquired RHP Robert Coello from the Boston Red Sox yesterday, in exchange for minor league 2B Tony Thomas. Coello had been Designated for Assignment by the Red Sox last Wednesday to make room on their 40-man roster after the Sox signed free-agent RHP Alfredo Aceves

The Red Sox were in a bit of bind with Coello because he is presently a Draft-Excluded Player (was added to an MLB 40-man roster after August 15th) and thus could not be sent to the minors (outrighted or optioned) any earlier than March 11th (20 days prior to MLB Opening Day). So the Red Sox had to either trade Coello or release him, and they had to make the decision within 10 days of placing him on the DFA list.

Like Carlos Marmol and Randy Wells, Coello was orginally a catcher. He was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the 20th round of the 2004 Rule 4 Draft out of Okaloosa-Walton CC, but signed too late to get into game action that season. He then spent the entire 2005 season on the Disabled List with a rib cage injury, before getting released by the Reds at the end Minor League Camp 2006. He then signed with the Los Angeles Angels, and was converted to pitcher at AZ Instructs post-2006. He spent the 2007 season at EXST and with the AZL Angels (1.37 ERA and 1.14 WHIP), before qualifying as a Rule 55 minor league FA post-2007 by virtue of having been released previously in his career.  

Coello moved to independent ball IN 2008, pitching for Calgary and Edmonton in the Golden Baseball League. The Red Sox THEN signed him to a minor league contract, and he spent the 2009 and 2010 seasons pitching in the Red Sox farm system, with the Red Sox Hi-A Carolina League club at Salem in 2009 (2.05 ERA and 1.09 WHIP with 83 K in just 66 IP), and at AA Portland and AAA Pawtucket in 2010 (combined 3.86 ERA and 1.17 WHIP while leading all BoSox minor leaguers in strikeouts with 130 K in 107 IP), before getting a September call-up to the big leagues, where he posted a 4.76 ERA and 1.59 WHIP in just six MLB games.

Coello pitched in winter ball post-2010, spending time in both the Domincan Winter League (DWL) with Licey and in the Mexican Pacific League (LMP) with Guasave, going a combined 2-5 with a 5.25 ERA, a 1.38 WHIP, and a .239 OppBA in 17 games (37.2 IP).   

Although he was a part-time starter at AA and AAA (and in winter ball) in 2010, Coello probably projects as an MLB reliever. He has all three of his minor league options left.

2B Tony Thomas was the Cubs 3rd round draft pick out of Florida State in June 2007, after hitting 430/522/733 (including a 35-game hitting streak) while earning ACC Player of the Year honors. He spent the past two seasons at AA Tennessee, and has hit a combined 269/342/438 with 78 SB (27 CS) in 405 minor league games. He rapped out 29 doubles, 11 triples, and 11 HR last year at Tennessee, in what was his best offensive season so far in pro ball. 

The 24-year old Thomas is a fast runner and a streaky hitter with some pop, but he is also a below-average defensive player without the arm to play anywhere but 2B (or maybe LF). He came into Cubs Minor League Camp at Fitch Park last March as the hands-down favorite to win the AAA #1 2B job, but he played himself right back to AA with poor defensive play and a series of base-running gaffes.  


Thomas sounds like a Helluva prospect. I think Pedroia should watch his back!

Why make this trade?

AZ Phil's last paragraph sums up Thomas. Coello has an intriguing strikeout total, and has been very hard to hit, based on his numbers. His stats look a lot like Carlos Marmol - shuts down hitters but walks too many while striking out everyone else. Thomas wasn't going anywhere with us, it's a decent gamble. 201 ip, 144 hits, 239 k's, 85 bb's.

At AAA Pawtucket, Coello yielded 44 hits in 64 innings, for a lovely H/9 of 6.2. But 10 of those hits were home runs! So he gave up one HR for every 4.4 hits. Oh, well, Marmol used to give up home runs, too.

it's not stellar, but tony thomas isn't stellar...or very good...himself. "meh" power, sketchy D, and an alarming K rate for a AA guy without the walks to make up for it. if thomas had the arm to at least cover 3rd/RF/SS he might be more interesting...he's looking like a 2nd/LF bench guy at best. the whole deal is "yawn" to me...i don't expect much out of either guy, but coello should at least be some good AAA insurance for the inevitable pen injury.

"the whole deal is "yawn" to me" this is what I meant

If a minor deal is a good minor deal, you should make it. It works for both teams, as Boston was a couple days from releasing Coello. If you are bored by minor trades, good for you. But some of us consider it a good thing to upgrade the team's talent. And for some of us, that isn't minor. More, a step in the right direction.

I make this trade for three main reasons. ***TT had his chance to start in Iowa in 2010. His spring relegated him to Tennessee again. ***Coello has shown solid high minors numbers in 2010. With 3 remaining options, he has the next four spring trainings to get it right and produce for the big club. ***Thomas has been passed by Darwin Barney. This spring, he was going to be passed by Junior Lake and Marwin Gonzalez. Shortly thereafter, DJ LeMahieu and Ryan Flaherty would pass him. The above five can play more positions than second, and will be better defensively. Thomas may 'figure it out' in Boston. Likely, neither will be world beaters. But when you get a mid-teens BoSox prospect for a non-factor, you take that gamble.

If he was so good why did Boston DFA him? Not trying to be a wiseass; I'm genuinely curious?

They signed a reliever named Aceves that the Yankees released. The Sawks already had 40 guys on their 40 man. To sign Aceves, they had to move someone else off the 40 man. Coello had been brought onto the 40 Man in August of 2010. League rules stipulate that he couldn't be sent down until a date in late March. Hence, Coello was DFA'd. In short, the Red Sox got caught in a numbers game. He isn't a premiere player, or anything. But the Red Sox have an expectation that if a player is on their 40 Man, he has to have some severe talent. Coello was the least valued of their 40.

You make this trade because you can never have enough pitching prospects and we have an abundance of quality 2B candidates on our roster. I'm kidding about the second part. I'm actually pulling for Barney to win the job because I think he can be everything Theriot was supposed to be and was not. Does anyone know if the high K totals for the new pticher is because of a great fastball, breaking pitch, or some other reason.

While the 26-year-old Coello doesn't overpower batters, he gets his share of swings and misses with a low-90s fastball that he cuts and sinks. He backs it up with a quality splitter and occasionally useful curveball.

SI's Heyman channels his inner Phil Rogers: "Three competing executives say they expect the rival Cubs to make a big push for Pujols and, indeed, they do look like the greatest outside possibility at the moment. Wouldn't that cast him in a new light for Cardinal Nation? The Cubs have the resources and the need, and execs feel they will pursue either Prince Fielder or more likely Pujols. "They'll give him the A-Rod deal," one exec opined. "They'll give him $33 million or $34 million for seven years," guessed another exec."

This Pujols speculation is already tiresome. The Cubs are broke. Old Joe Ricketts needs to shove the kidz aside and put this nonsense to bed right, now!

yanks cut neal cotts...yow...kinda early.

Submitted by crunch on Wed, 02/16/2011 - 5:35pm. yanks cut neal cotts...yow...kinda early. ============================== CRUNCH: Cotts must have failed his camp physical. That's alomost always the reason players get released this time of year.

never was a fan of ron santo, the announcer... ...still...there's a void of his optimism and voice missing from this pre-season. in a semi-half-assed-relation-way he was the cubs tommy lasorda...eternal cheerleader.

in a semi-half-assed-relation-way he was the cubs tommy lasorda...eternal cheerleader Not "half-assed" in the least. He bled with all of us. Even worse, in fact. Very unusual for an announcer (and he was challenged as an announcer, to be sure). I could not stand him anymore as an on-air guy. But he was the real deal. My one time meeting him in September, the man could not have been nicer to a complete stranger. Like I said earlier, Zonk was probably the best of a weak draft class.

i just mean relating lasorda to santo since lasorda and santo had different relations to the teams they bleed for. i think they're both the real deal...they just took different paths proving and living it.

I live in Austin and listen to Moreland on my way home from work -- he's on the local radio sports talk station out here. He definitely is knowledgeable about Texas sports and I don't think it will take him long to ramp up for baseball since he's an ex player who (I think) most of us liked. He's not gonna send anybody into a laughing fit, and despite his calling Castro Castillo the other day he won't make a lot of mistakes like that once he's been around a couple months. And now a word from our sponsor: If you're a real die hard you can listen to him live at between 3-7. It's not a very good sports talk show overall but not cuz of Moreland. Luckily, it's a short drive home for me.

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  • crunch 8 hours 10 min ago (view)

    Dale Murphy @DaleMurphy3

    Last night, my son was shot in the eye with a rubber bullet while peacefully protesting for justice for George Floyd. His story is not unique. Countless others have also experienced this use of excessive police force while trying to have their voices heard.

    Dale Murphy @DaleMurphy3


  • BobbyD 9 hours 15 min ago (view)

    But he has vicious dogs ready to kill the nig***. Oh wait, thugs. He's a real man. 


  • Cubster 13 hours 33 min ago (view)

    "this idea isn't a proposal at all and may actually be a measure that is forced into action by the league if the two sides can't sort out the financial details for a longer season."

    MLBPA: Over our dead bodies. Followed by Trump sending in the military to force ballplayers and fans to perform like puppets on strings with fans to yell (and cough and sneezing) at the umpires. Ah, baseball before Jackie Robinson. The Trump Republican Party: Bring back the Cheating/Pandemic  1919 White only - White Sox. Say it ain't so, Joe.


  • Hagsag 13 hours 44 min ago (view)

    Trump waiving a bible in front of the church is a total disgrace.


  • crunch 23 hours 33 min ago (view)

    ...but now there's this...

    "According to ESPN's Jeff Passan, Major League Baseball views a season of around 50 games as a "last resort" option should there be no agreement with the MLBPA.


  • crunch 1 day 2 hours ago (view)

    Jeff Passan @JeffPassan
    Major League Baseball intends to propose a shorter season in which they would pay players a full prorated share of their salaries, sources told ESPN. The league believes the late March agreement allows it to set the schedule, and that this would fulfill players’ pro rata desire.


  • JustSayin' 1 day 2 hours ago (view)

    Minor League Baseball makes the cover of SI!  Two years ago, I would have been elated.  Today, it's depressing (like the article.)


  • BobbyD 1 day 5 hours ago (view)

    Crunch, thanks. I can be a jerk at times, but you bailed me out. Btw I'm the whitest white boy (who grew up next to Wrigley and also worked at my dad's warehouse next to Cabrini Green). I'm truly ashamed of this president. I don't believe anyone sane wants more of him. Go Cubs!! I miss Bobby Dernier's first home run against the Padres. 


  • Cubster 1 day 10 hours ago (view)

    MLBTR has an update on the latest owner's revision proposal. 


  • Cubster 1 day 12 hours ago (view)

    'we have a donald trump problem, but he may be a highly advanced and dangerous symptom rather than the actual disease.'

    Surely true, dear Crunch. Trump has emboldened the ugly fact that America's cruel underbelly is still racism and police brutality that forwards that original sin. 

    America NEEDS its HEROES.


  • Cubster 1 day 13 hours ago (view)

    if he does die by "suicide", I would blame Bill Barr and look into a real conspiracy.


  • Cubster 1 day 13 hours ago (view)

    welcome to an unwelcome June 1st.


  • Hagsag 1 day 14 hours ago (view)

    November 3, vote!


  • George Altman 1 day 21 hours ago (view)

    Yes, many players are millionaires too. However, a good percentage of MLB Owners are billionaires. If there's no MLB in 2020 that's on 30 owners, not the players no matter how the Press spins things. 


  • George Altman 1 day 21 hours ago (view)

    Well said, Crunch. #Resistance 


  • crunch 1 day 21 hours ago (view)

    i'm not a fan of this administration.  i'm not a fan of someone holding office who's rise to political prominence involved insisiting, with proof he clamed, that the current elected president at the time was not a citizen of the United States.

    we watched as state after state was slowly "won over" by promises of keeping out muslims and hispanics as the most important issue that could help elevate the state of our country.