Cubs Sign Motte
The Cubs have signed reliever Jason Motte to a one-year deal for $4.5M with a games finished incentive. Motte hasn't pitched a full season since 2012, but did have a helluva nice run out of the Cardinals bullpen from 2010-2012, including being their closer in 2012 where he knocked out 42 saves with a 2.75 ERA thanks to a 10.1 K/9 rate, 2.1 BB/9 rate and 0.917 WHIP that season.. He underwent Tommy John surgery in May of 2013 and returned briefly in 2014, before going back on the disabled list with a back issue in August that ended his season. Motte will turn 33 in June of next season.
While we all like the young Cubs bullpen that is built, it doesn't take much for them to go from good to bad or injuries to hit, so adding some depth shouldn't be a problem and Joe Maddon is keen on mixing and matching until someone earns their roles. We'll see if he's back from his pre-surgery days though, as his average fastball velocity on fangraphs was just 93.9 mph in 2014 versus the 96 area in 2010-2012.
BONUS ROSTER MOVE: The Cubs send INF Marco Hernandez to the Boston Red Sox as the player to be named later that brought the Cubs Felix Doubront. Hernandez did get a bit of Rule 5 buzz, although ultimately not selected. The Cubs still await a player from the A's to complete the Samardzija deal.
Cubster 15 hours 4 min ago (view)
IMPOTUS 45: "ANYBODY WHO WANTS A TEST CAN GET A TEST"
then said quietly by his elves: although it can take up to 1-2 days (or two tanks of gas) to get through test lines and then 7-14 days to get results.
crunch 15 hours 28 min ago (view)
5 cubs players + d.ross didn't work out with the team today because their tests were dealyed. 4 players + d.ross later came back negative and 1 test will have to be done again because it was compromised during transport and invalidated.
...turns out the compromised test was not a player, but a non-player/non-ross Tier 1 employee. neat.
crunch 17 hours 49 min ago (view)
v.caratini will continue to be darvish's preferred catcher this season.
crunch 17 hours 49 min ago (view)
j.hicks (STL) opts out. he's a T1 diabetic currently rehabbing from TJ. he was expected to return in august.
JustSayin' 1 day 15 hours ago (view)
I think what your saying applies to all franchises in all big-time team sports. The virus is asymptomatic in many carriers. The national positive test % rate is mid/high single digits. If your pro sports franchise does 3-4 x better than that, it still means some players and coaches will test positive and things will grind to a partial or complete halt. At least baseball didn't try to "bubble" in AZ and FL, which are looking like two of the worst (and worst-led) states in which to be located at the currrent stage of the pandemic.
crunch 1 day 16 hours ago (view)
rizzo took BP and did some field work today. also, almora is good to go...he ran into a wall on friday and got a little banged up.
Cubster 1 day 23 hours ago (view)
Aroldis Chapman is now Covid positive with mild symptoms
crunch 2 days 12 hours ago (view)
the COVID-Division should be fun.
teams from TX, AZ, CA, WA, and CO exclusively playing each other... CO is all "wtf, really?"
Cubster 2 days 13 hours ago (view)
...and so it goes (per Roto): Astros general manager James Click wrote in a statement that a member of the staff "was potentially exposed to a COVID-positive individual outside the organization.” The team is working with MLB and team doctors on testing protocol and cleaning before resuming workouts.
Does the visiting team bring a Covid positive bio-weapon to the player's parking lot?
Charlie 2 days 20 hours ago (view)
I've been wondering how this would proceed. Since teams will have to figure out how existing contracts will be paid, I thought there was a *chance* they would proceed with free agency as usual and plan for payment under potential shortened seasons would just be figured out in negotiations with the MLBPA. But that was probably an overly optimistic thought.
Dolorous Jon Lester 2 days 23 hours ago (view)
Meanwhile Theo shoots down any potential of extension talks. I get that it's a crazy time financially in baseball, but it's really gonna suck when all these players leave after 21 and 22.
Cubster 3 days 9 hours ago (view)
WSox Michael Kopech has opted out of 2020. I didn't see a disclosed reason yet but he is recovering from TJ S
crunch 3 days 20 hours ago (view)
buster posey (SF) opting out of 2020...recently adopted twin daughters who were born premature.
Cubster 5 days 24 min ago (view)
per Tribune: Kimbrel's OK, just working on his changeup (formerly his fastball).
Arizona Phil 5 days 12 hours ago (view)
The Cubs have released RHRP (and their erstwhile closer) Brandon Morrow. There is no indication that they plan to re-sign him to another (different) 2020 minor league contract without the Article XX-B $100K retention bonus provision (as happened with Jason Kipnis last week).
crunch 5 days 16 hours ago (view)
rizzo takes another day off (lower back). ross says the club is "exercising caution."
klye ryan is expected to join the team tomorrow after some mysterious holdup.