Cubs Acquire Alec Mills from Royals
The Cubs acquired 25-year old RHSP Alec Mills from the Kansas City Royals Wednesday evening in exchange for minor league OF Donnie Dewees.
LHRP David Rollins has been Designated for Assignment by the Cubs to make room for Mills on the MLB Reserve List (40-man roster).
Mills had been Designated for Assignment by Kansas City earlier Wednesday after the Royals signed free-agent (and ex-Cub) RHSP Jason Hammel, so the Cubs did not waste any time going after Mills once he hit the DFA list.
Mills was selected by the Royals in the 22nd round of the 2012 draft out of UT - Martin, and he had a couple of decent (but not exceptional) seasons as a SP/RP "swingman" in the lower minors before sustaining a torn elbow ligament. He underwent Tommy John Surgery in July of 2013, but he recovered from it very well and returned to action as a full-time starting pitcher in late 2014, and he is actually a better pitcher (and a much better prospect) now than he was before the TJS.
The 6'4 190 Mills was rated the Royals #12 prospect by Baseball America coming into the 2016 season. He made his MLB debut (working in relief) on May 18th (he was called-up as the "26th man" in a doubleheader), and was optioned back to AAA the next day. He then made two more relief appearances for the Royals in September. Meanwhile, Mills had a fine season in the minors in 2016 (split between AA Northwest Arkansas and AAA Omaha), putting up a 3.22 ERA, 1.19 WHIP, and a .252 Opp BA, and an outstanding 31/122 BB/K in 125.2 IP (24 games - 23 GS).
Although he was not used as a starting pitcher at the big league level with the Royals, Mills projects as an MLB rotation starter going forward, with excellent control (just 45 BB allowed in 239 IP 2015-16), a 90-92 MPH fastball that touches 94, a plus-change, a serviceable breaking ball, and legitimate swing & miss stuff (233 punch-outs in 239 IP over the past two seasons). He will likely be in the AAA Iowa starting rotation in 2016 (he could even be the #1 starter there), available to get a recall if an "emergency" starter is needed and it's his turn to pitch, and he will very likely compete for a job in the Cubs MLB starting rotation in 2018 (Jake Arrieta, John Lackey, and Brett Anderson are free-agents post-2017).
Mills has two minor league options left, so the Cubs will have no problem sending him back & forth to Iowa in both 2017 and 2018.
Dewees was the Cubs 2nd round draft pick out of the University of North Florida in 2015, and while I am a big Donnie Dewees fan (I considered him to be one of the Cubs Top 15 Prospects post-2016), I did not see a long-term future for him with the Cubs. He is an excellent "fly-hawk" albeit with a well below-average arm, he has plus-speed (50 SB in 195 minor league game), and his "ceiling" is probably a Brett Butler-type lead-off hitter (high contact/good bunter/not much power), but because he has a rag-arm he might have to play LF in MLB (although because of his plus speed, CF is still a possibility), and also because of his weak throwing arm he really does not project as a "4th outfielder" at the big league level because he can't play RF (an MLB 4th outfielder needs to be at least passably-adequate at all three outfield positions).
David Rollins has been claimed off waivers five times (twice by the Cubs) since the end of the 2016 season, and so now the Cubs will (once again) try to secure Outright Assignnment waivers, and if they can (if no other MLB club claims him), he will be sent outright him to AAA Iowa (most certainly with a standing NRI to Spring Training). If waivers can be secured and the Cubs outright Rollins to the minors, he will remain under club control through the 2018 season (presuming he isn't traded, released, or selected in the December 2017 Rule 5 Draft).
crunch 49 min 29 sec ago (view)
i dont have ESPN anymore since DirecTV Now raised their prices, so I have to rely on...umm...very legal and very cool ways for my ESPN fix.
Hagsag 57 min 11 sec ago (view)
Pat and Ron, no Aroid for me.
crunch 1 hour 8 min ago (view)
phew...last ESPN sunday cubs game until the williamsport little leage classic game Aug 18 vs PIT.
i really like the LLClassic and i'm stoked the cubs will play this year. i hope it sticks around for a long time.
QuietMan 1 hour 53 min ago (view)
crunch 2 hours 37 min ago (view)
t.barnette and d.hultzen worked today's IOW game. nice to have emerging options...
d.mekkes is continuing to be a future end-game reliever to keep an eye on, too. he's not making many team prospect lists, and he's not blowing anyone away, but he's steady getting it done.
crunch 2 hours 43 min ago (view)
mike trout will be a cub soon enough. woo! if they package both together the cubs might be able to snag griffin canning along with him.
Arizona Phil 5 hours 42 min ago (view)
If Ben Zobrist were to return to baseball sometime in the next few weeks or next couple of months, keep in mind that he does have a minor league option left, so he (like Craig Kimbrel) could consent to an Optional Assignment to the minors to get into playing shape.
Arizona Phil 6 hours 45 min ago (view)
As of today (6/16), Daniel Descalso and Brad Brach no longer have Article XX-B "no trade" rights and so they can be traded without restriction.
Arizona Phil 7 hours 16 min ago (view)
LF Nelson Maldonado, 3B Grayson Byrd, CF Zac Taylor, INF Jacob Olson, and INF-OF-C Bryce Windham (the five college senior position-player draft picks who officially signed last Tuesday and who have been active in AZL mini-camp for almost a week) should be ready to play in AZL games right from the gitgo.
The sixth college senior position player draft pick signed by the Cubs (LF Darius Hill, who signed officially on Thursday) might not be quite ready on AZL Opening Day.
Arizona Phil 7 hours 25 min ago (view)
Cubs 24th round draft pick 3B Grayson Byrd looks exactly like Justin Turner (at least above the neck). Long red hair and a full red beard. Now if he could only hit like Turner...
Arizona Phil 7 hours 25 min ago (view)
INF-OF Bryce Windham (32nd round pick - Old Dominion) worked out at catcher in "live" BP yesterday, so he could be the 6th Cubs AZL catcher (they really need three on both squads) if they don't add another catcher this week.
Arizona Phil 8 hours 46 min ago (view)
JustSayin': Brendan Sagara is the Mad Scientist who developed & implemented the high-tech Cubs Pitching Lab at the UAPC in Mesa. The Pitching Lab can't turn everybody into Jacob deGrom, but so far it has helped to develop Tyson Miller into a legit MLB SP prospect and bring Danny Hultzen back from the dead.
Jackstraw 13 hours 33 min ago (view)
I was watching the golf waiting for the Cubs to start and of course I fell asleep and then I had the weirdest dream. The Cubs were getting no hit but Darvish was pitching really well and then Jansen blew a save and then Strop actually closed the game out without a guy getting into scoring position. It's not like any of that stuff except the no hitter part could happen.
Sonicwind75 21 hours 16 min ago (view)
Yes indeed, feels like the Cubs stole one. Helluva 9th and another Darvish no decision. Could really use a few more starts like tonight from Darvish.
crunch 21 hours 21 min ago (view)
sweet f'n win. also, MIL lost.
cubs and brewers tied for 1st.
crunch 21 hours 36 min ago (view)
2r HR off jansen in the 9th! cubs lead 2-1!