Cubs Release Eleven Minor League Pitchers

The Cubs released eleven minor league pitchers yesterday: 

Anderson Acevedo - age 25 (Dominican Republic)
Yan de la Cruz - age 25 (Dominican Republic) 
Wander Feliz (ex-OF) - age 21 (Dominican Republic)
Hector Alonso Garcia - age 20 (Mexico) 
Jose Alejandro Gonzalez (ex-OF) - age 23 (Venezuela)
Ronaldo Lopez (ex-INF) - age 20 (Venezuela) 
Junior Marte - age 23 (Dominican Republic)
Enzo Perez - age 18 (Venezuela)
Andry Rondon - age 23 (Dominican Republic) 
Freddy Tineo - age 21 (Venezuela)
Sucre Valdez - age 25 (Dominican Republic)

The eleven are mainly older pitchers who have not progressed to the Cubs' satisfaction. In fact none of the eleven ever made it out of short-season ball (only five of the eleven made it as far as Eugene, and another five never even made it out of the DSL).  

All eleven are RHP and were originally IFA signed out of Latin America. Three (W. Feliz, J. Gonzalez, and R. Lopez) were position-player conversions, three others (A. Acevedo, Y. de la Cruz, and E. Perez) were second-contract guys (previously released by another organization), and ten of the eleven would have been Rule 5 Draft-eligible post-2019.  

Only two of the eleven (W. Feliz and H. Garcia) were signed by the Cubs as 16-year old IFA in their first-eligible ISP, and Feliz was originally signed as an outfielder. Garcia was one of the 25 players signed by the Cubs out of Mexico 2014-18. (E. Perez was originally signed as a 16-year old IFA by SD, but was released by the Padres two years later). 

Junior Marte is the most-notable pitcher released, because a couple of years ago he was so impressive in Extended Spring Training that he was signed by the Boras Corporation (same day Boras Corp signed Jose Albertos).  

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With the release of eleven minor league pitchers yesterday, the Cubs now have 344 players under contract for 2019 (including six players on the Restricted List). 39 of the 338 players not on the Restricted List are on the Cubs MLB Reserve List (40-man roster), and the other 299 are either on a minor league reserve list (289) or are Signed for Future Service (10). 

So there is one slot presently open on the Cubs MLB 40-man roster, and there are 31 slots open (collectively) on the nine minor league reserve lists, although ten of the slots will eventually be filled by 2018-19 IFA who were Signed for Future Service last year. 

Anyone heard what is going on with Brach?

heard nothing, but this is starting to stink of "something of concern was found" and a contract renegociation.

it's been over 2 weeks and it's not like they need to swing a trade or DFA someone for a roster spot.

I think it's pretty clear that the delay in the Brach signing has passed the point of the physical being delayed because of bad weather or the possibility that he might have had the flu or something like that. 

So either something was found during the physical that caused a renegotiation (like maybe the Cubs are now offering a smaller base salary but with more performance bonuses), or the Cubs could be waiting until this coming week to submit the Brach contract to the MLB office (as long as the player is not placed on an MLB or minor league active roster or reserve list, clubs have up to 20 days to submit a signed contract to MLB) so that Kendall Graveman can be placed on the 60-day injury list before Brach is added to the Cubs MLB 40-man roster, thus keeping a slot open on the 40 for a potential waiver claim (like maybe INF Jack Reinheimer, who was Designated for Assignment by the Orioles last week, but had been claimed off waivers by the Cubs last November before the Cubs lost him off waivers to the Texas Rangers three weeks after claiming him while trying to outright him to the minors prior to the filing of minor league reserve lists on 11/20).

The thing is, if a player is claimed off waivers by a club when the club's MLB 40-man roster is full, the player who is claimed must be added to the 40 immediately and that player cannot be Designated for Assignment to keep the roster at 40. So if Brach already was on the 40 and thus the Cubs MLB 40-man roster was full and then the Cubs were awarded a waiver claim before they could place Graveman on the 60-day injury list, another player (- NOT - the player they just got off waivers) would have to be dropped from the 40.  

AZ Phil, is Jim Benedict still working for the Cubs? Thanks.

Roto world has a post saying the Brach deal is done.

saw a Jesse Rogers tweet saying the above too.

4.35m

...the initial rumors were between $3m-5m

4.35m is the exact amount rosenthall gave back in Jan.

who knows what the holdup was at this point...

Jack Reinheimer did not clear waivers today (wasn't claimed/wasn't outrighted), which means the Cubs could safely file the Brad Brach contract with MLB and add him to the 40, and still be able to potentially acquire Reinheimer off waivers and then place Kendall Graveman on the 60-day injury list sometime in the next couple of days to make room for Reinheimer on the 40 (if they are awarded the claim). 

Remember that a player on an MLB Reserve List (40-man roster) cannot be placed on the MLB 60-day injury list (formerly 60-day DL) until the first official day of Spring Training (which is the day pitchers & catchers report).

Also, a club can place a player on the MLB 60-day injury list (or transfer a player from the MLB 10-day injury list to the 60-day injury list) once the MLB Reserve List (40-man roster) is full even if the player being placed on the 60-day injury list is not replaced on the 40 by another player - EXCEPT - in September, when a player who is placed on the 60-day injury list (or transferred to the 60-day injury list) must be replaced on the MLB 40-man roster by another player. 

In addition, a player who is placed on the MLB 60-day injury list during Spring Training cannot be reinstated until he has spent at least the first 60 days of the MLB regular season on the 60-day injury list (which means he cannot be reinstated until the 61st day of the MLB regular season, which is May 27th in 2019) even if he is placed on the 60-day injury list in February. This is why the Cubs have to be careful what they do with Brandon Morrow (November2018 elbow surgery), who might (or might not) miss the first 60 days of the 2019 MLB regular season.

I would expect the Cubs to initially place Morrow on the MLB 10-day injury list on or just prior to MLB Opening Day (an MLB 10-day injury list assignment can be backdated a maximum of three days prior to Opening Day and an MLB 7-day acute concussion injury list assignement can be backdated a maximum of four days prior to Opening Day) and then transfer him to the 60-day injury list at a later point in time (perhaps when Addison Russell and Oscar de la Cruz are reinstated from the Restricted List the first week of May), but - ONLY -  if it becomes clearly obvious that he will in fact miss the first 60 days of the 2019 MLB regular season. Because Morrow has a 2020 vesting option dependent on games and GF, the Cubs can't just place him on the 60-day injury list (or transfer him from the 10-day injury list to the 60-day injury list) without a really good reason. Otherwise the Cubs would risk a potential grievance being filed by Morrow that could (if the Cubs lose it) require the Cubs to exercise their club contract option on Morrow for 2020.    

k.cowart (3rd, DET, formally LAA) will be given a chance to be a 2-way player this season if he doesn't screw it up in spring...

91-93mph fastball.

this is starting to become a "thing"...there could be 2-3 of these guys next season across multiple teams.

...and now legit OF/1st prospect jared walsh (LAA) is going to be a 2-way player in the minors (and this spring) working out of the pen.  he's not a high end prospect, but he put together a nice power season last year while dabbling a bit with pitching.

this is catching on.

Brach is signed. I can sleep nights again.

"Cubs prospect Adbert Alzolay is about two weeks behind the other pitchers in camp due to a side injury.

Alzolay felt a twinge when he slipped during a recent bullpen session, and the Cubs will back off his early-spring workload until he is fully healed."

k.graveman to the 60-day DL

Historically, that happens when a player is added.

Maybe they changed the rules. Or Reinheimer.

TIM: A club can place a player on the MLB 60-day Injured List (or transfer a player from the MLB 10-day Injured List to the 60-day Injured List) once the MLB Reserve List (40-man roster) is full even if the player being placed on the 60-day Injured List is not replaced on the 40 by another player - EXCEPT - in September, when a player who is placed on the 60-day Injured List (or transferred to the 60-day Injured List) must be replaced on the MLB 40-man roster by another player. 

Most clubs wait to place a player onto the 60-day Injured List until they need a 40-man roster slot, but not always. 

And again, a club's MLB Reserve List (40-man roster) must be full before a player can placed on the 60-day Injured List, so the Cubs could not have placed Kendall Graveman onto the 60 until they added Brad Brach (or another player) to the 40. 

TIM: The Jack Reinheimer DFA hits seven days tomorrow (Thursday), so his roster status will need to be resolved by the Orioles within 24 hours. 

Since it takes 47 hours to run a player through waivers, the Orioles would have needed to place Reinheimer on Outright Assignment Waivers no later than 2 PM (Eastern) yesterday (Tuesday). If for some reason they failed to do that, they could only release him or trade him.  

So he's probably riding the waiver train right now. 

Thanks, as always.

The Cubs have reportedly signed FA LHRP Xavier Cedeno to a non-guaranteed major league contract.

Here's what the Cubs might do so that they can add both Xavier Cedeno - AND - Jack Reinheimer to the 40 (presuming the Cubs claim Reinheimer off waivers and are awarded the claim). 

1. Wait until they find out if they get Reinheimer. If they do, they would have to immediately place him on the MLB 40-man roster (which has one slot open after Kendall Graveman was placed on the 60-day Injured List); 

Then...  

2. DFA Reinheimer.

Then... 

3. Add Cedeno to the 40.

See, the Cubs cannot add Cedeno to the 40 first and then acquire Reinheimer off waivers without having to DFA another player presently on the 40. That's because if a club is awarded a waiver claim and the club's MLB 40-man roster is already full, the player claimed off waivers cannot be Designated for Assignment to get the roster back down to 40. Another (different) player has to be dropped from the 40. 

But if the Cubs wait to add Cedeno to the 40 until - AFTER - they find out if they get Reinheimer off waivers (and again, this is presuming the Cubs are as interested in acquiring Reinheimer now as they were last November), they can acquire Reinheimer via waiver claim and immediately place him on the 40 (because one slot is open), and - THEN - after Reinheimer has been added to the 40, DFA Reinheimer (which gets the roster back down to 39), and - THEN - add Cedeno to the 40 (hoping to sneak Reinheimer through waivers like they did with Ian Clarkin last week).  

But it has to be done in a certain specific sequence for it to work. 

throws slow ugly junk...sinking cutter thing and a curve.

he puts together some ugly ABs vs him, though...not a guy to get solid contact off of.

John Heyman at MLB Network is now reporting that the Cedeno deal is a MINOR LEAGUE contract. If so, he will not need to be added to the 40 and one slot will remain open for a possible waiver claim.  

If the Cubs are going to decide who gets the last couple of slots in their Opening Day MLB bullpen mainly from Cactus League game performances, it's going to be a challenge to make sure that everyone gets enough work to show what they've got to offer and for the Cubs to get a good read on everybody and not end up releasing the wrong guy(s).

As I've mentioned here before, there could be as few as two slots at AAA Iowa available for the dozen or more veteran pitchers the Cubs have signed to minor league contracts this off-season. Hopefully at least a couple of them will be OK with remaining in Mesa at Extended Spring Training as a de facto "replacement cadre." 

Contrary to Jon Heyman's report yesterday, the Cubs have filed the Xavier Cedeno contract signing as a MAJOR LEAGUE non-guaranteed contract, so he goes onto their MLB 40-man roster and now the 40 is full. 

Also, because the contract is not guaranteed, the Cubs would owe Cedeno 30 days pay (about $150K) if he is released more than 15 days prior to MLB Opening Day (that is, no later than March 12th), or 45 days pay (about $225K) if he is released 15 or fewer days prior to MLB Opening Day (March 13th - March 27th). The contract becomes 100% fully guaranteed if he is not released prior to MLB Opening Day. 

In addition, Cedeno is an Article XIX-A player (he has accrued at least five years of MLB Service Time), so he cannot be optioned or sent outright to the minors without his permission (he is out of minor league options so that doesn't come into play at all). 

The difference between being an Article XIX-A player (at least five years of MLB Service Time) like Cedeno is and being an Article XX-D player (at least three years of MLB Service Time but less than five) is that an Article XIX-A player cannot be sent to the minors (optioned or outrighted) without his permission, while an Article XX-D player can be sent to the minors (optioned or outrighted) without his permission, but if he is outrighted to the minors he can elect free-agency immediately (but with no termination pay) or defer free-agency until aftef the conclusion of the MLB regular season. 

So for Cedeno it will almost certainly be Chicago or Bust.  

Jack Reinheimer's waiver ride has (mercifully) ended and he was not claimed, so the Orioles have sent him outright to AAA Norfolk. 

The Watch on the Reinheimer is over. 

Here is one reason why a club would prefer to have a player who is not expected to return to active duty anytime soon on the 60-day Injured List instead of on the 10-day Injured List: 

A "Standard Form of Diagnosis" signed by the club physician must accompany a request to place a player on an MLB Injured List, and a "Standard Form of Diagnosis for Recertification" signed by the club physician must be filed with the MLB Commissioner every ten days for players on the MLB 10-day Injured List and after seven days for players on the MLB 7-day Injured List. 

However, a Standard Form of Recertification is - NOT - required once a player has been placed on or transferred to a club's MLB 60-day Injured List. So a player on an MLB 60-day Injured List could go to Mars and stay there indefinitely for all MLB cares (as long as he gets his MLB meal & tip money when the club is on the road). 

Also, a Standard Form of Diagnosis is - NOT - required to place a minor league player on a minor league Injured List and a Standard Form of Recertification is not required once a minor league player has been placed on a minor league Injured List. This is why it is so easy to place a minor league player on a minor league Injured List and then just leave him there indefinitely, at least so long as the player is cool with it. (What used to be called the "Phantom DL" will now probably be called the "Phantom IL"). 

LHP James Buckelew has retired. 

The Cubs purchased Buckelew's contract frrom the Kansas City T-Bones (American Association) last July, and he split time between Myrtle Beach and Tennessee over the last two months of the season.  

The 27-year old Buckelew was signed by the Miami Marlins as a NDFA college senior out of Belmont University in June 2014 and he spent five seasons in the Marlins organization prior to being released last May, and then he spent only about a month in independent ball with the T-Bones before being acquired by the Cubs. 

The Cubs have released RHRP Luis Aquino. 

RHRP Mitch Stophel (Cubs 2017 25th round draft pick - King University) has retired. 

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  • crunch 35 min 38 sec ago (view)

    so stoked for the williamsport game.

    the increasing amount of off-site games is a bit concerning (middle of nowhere Field of Dreams field, really?), but I love this one.  it's played out great so far and giving the kids playing in the LL series some primo seats (hope this continues) is a great touch.

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 hour 56 min ago (view)

    Craig Kimbrel reinstated from IL, Duane Underwood Jr optioned to Iowa, Mark Zagunis recalled as the "26th man" for tonight's game (special travel required to get to Williamsport so MLB Comissioner permits 26th man for both clubs). 

     

  • crunch 20 hours 11 min ago (view)

    at least...

     

  • Charlie 21 hours 5 min ago (view)

    Lester pitched 35 innings today.

     

  • crunch 23 hours 45 min ago (view)

    2019...cubs fan...being thankful heyward and chatwood are around...wtf...

     

  • Eric S 1 day 31 min ago (view)

    Like having a 5-1 lead going into the ninth?

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 day 1 hour ago (view)

    With our vaunted late inning tandem of Tyler Chatwood and Rowan Wick!

    Who would have thought?

     

  • Jackstraw 1 day 1 hour ago (view)

    Cubs 1-10 with RISP in the series.  Left lots of ducks on the pond.  Could take some of the pressure off the pen.

     

  • Jackstraw 1 day 1 hour ago (view)

    You could hit your thumb with a hammer.  Or take a big bite of wayyyy too hot pizza.  Just sayin.

     

  • Eric S 1 day 1 hour ago (view)

    I’m a little surprised and confused that Bote wasn’t in the infield in the ninth? Wth - need that one out boot to complete my day

     

  • crunch 1 day 1 hour ago (view)

    cubs win!  about time.

     

  • Eric S 1 day 1 hour ago (view)

    Cubs have to scratch mightily to get two runs against the mighty second half buccos

     

  • crunch 1 day 2 hours ago (view)

    K, diving catch by happ for an out, HBP to load the bases, ground out

    phew.

    PIT has loaded the bases 3 times in this game.

     

  • crunch 1 day 2 hours ago (view)

    ...and we're doing more 0 out, men on base stuff...

    2 on, 0 outs...up to 103 pitches and lester's day is done.

    bullpen time.  oh. boy.  neat.

    chatwood in.

     

  • crunch 1 day 2 hours ago (view)

    bryant has not forgotten how to hit homers.

    sweeeeeeeet.

     

  • crunch 1 day 2 hours ago (view)

    2 on, 0 out, and also gets out of that.

    btw, bryant has forgotten how to play 3rd base the past 2 innings...da hell...