Cubs MLB Roster

Cubs Organizational Depth Chart
40-Man Roster Info

40 players are on the MLB RESERVE LIST (roster is full), plus two players are on the 60-DAY IL

26 players on MLB RESERVE LIST are ACTIVE, plus six players are on OPTIONAL ASSIGNMENT to minors, seven players are on the 15-DAY IL, and one player is on the 10-DAY IL

Last updated 5-18-2024

* bats or throws left
# bats both

Javier Assad
Ben Brown
Jose Cuas
Kyle Hendricks
Porter Hodge 
* Shota Imanaga
Mark Leiter Jr
* Luke Little
Tyson Miller
Hector Neris
* Justin Steele
Jameson Taillon
Hayden Wesneski

Miguel Amaya
Yan Gomes

* Michael Busch
Nico Hoerner
Nick Madrigal
* Miles Mastrobuoni
Christopher Morel
Patrick Wisdom

* Cody Bellinger
* Pete Crow-Armstrong
# Ian Happ
Seiya Suzuki
* Mike Tauchman

Kevin Alcantara, OF
Michael Arias, P
Alexander Canario, OF
Brennen Davis, OF
* Matt Mervis, 1B
Luis Vazquez, INF

10-DAY IL: 1
Dansby Swanson, INF

15-DAY IL: 7
Yency Almonte, P 
Albert Alzolay, P
Colten Brewer, P 
Daniel Palencia, P
* Drew Smyly, P
Keegan Thompson, P 
* Jordan Wicks, P

60-DAY IL: 2
Caleb Kilian, P
Julian Merryweather, P


Minor League Rosters
Rule 5 Draft 
Minor League Free-Agents

Cubs vs. Rockies: Game Thread (Game 5)

The Cubs improved to 2-2 on the back of six shutout innings from Imanaga in his debut and a break from the Rockies that turned a hard single to left into the equivalent of a three run homerun. Javier Assad takes the ball as the Cubs attempt to push into winning territory. In 2023, Assad followed his work representing Mexico in the World Baseball Classic by putting up a little over 100 innings in 10 starts and 22 relief appearances. He improved his walk rate compared to 2022 and has been the Cubs go-to swing man. 

The Rockies answer with the lefty Kyle Freeland. Freeland created some hype with a very good 2018 season but has settled in as a slightly above average MLB pitcher since then. He's allowed more contact in the air in recent years but has also lowered his walk rate under 3.0 per nine innings. He showed improved fastball velocity but not results in his first start, averaging 93 mph but also allowing 10 earned runs in a 2.1 inning start in Arizona. 

The forecast is a bit spotty this evening with temperatures in the 40s and a chance of precipitation. Hopefully, the rain will hold off long enough for them to get this done. Game time is set for 6:40 pm central. 


counsell sure takes his time listing lineups.

busch sits, coop at 1st, morel DH, madrigal 3rd.

hoener is the leadoff vs lefty starter again, suzuki batting 2nd.

big assad fan.  i don't think he's more than middle-rotation talent at his best, but it's nice to see him get a shot at starting based on what he was showing late-season last year.

unless there's a constant stream of starter injuries (or wicks starts sucking) he's destined to make his way back to the pen, but he should get 3+ starts at a minimum.

freeland is pitching horrible for COL.

theo is probably out there somewhere wishing he had the power to give him a 3-year deal with some club.

Remember how a few days ago I was told that well paid, established players rarely dog it? You just saw it. I know it’s 6-0, but Bellinger makes $25 million a year. Is it too much to expect to see him run out a pop up so he can get an extra base if the ball drops? That’s what I mean by dogging it. Enthusiastic players who haven’t yet made their millions run that out no matter what the score.

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

Have you ever noticed that winning teams en route to destiny rarely are “laid back”, nor do they project an atmosphere of “dogging it”?

They hustle. They stand at the edge of the dugout. They celebrate with gusto.  It’s infectious and spreads throughout a dugout and clubhouse. Unsung heroes spring up out of nowhere after absorbing that spirit.

When it comes right down to it, isn’t the reason we all love Christopher Morel specifically because he brings that kind of energy and vibe to his game? The man clearly loves what he does.

Bellinger is considered to be a team leader and is paid accordingly. Do we want our team leaders to lead with countenance of “laid back and dogging it”?

Sorry, I’m pretty stubborn too. Laid back players can play with hard and with professionalism too. I’m sure Bellinger once did. Slumps and streaks come and go. Effort does not. I want my players to play with exuberance, to play with maximum effort and to constantly be looking to improve. You will not convince me that years of adulation and millions of dollars does not take the edge off of that approach for the large majority of players (though admittedly not all) who achieve that level of fame. I see it altogether too often. And that needs to be considered this next offseason when the next shiny new free agent is bypassed and the cat calls of “ownership is cheap” resume.

[ ]

In reply to by TarzanJoeWallis

Counterpoint: Dansby Swanson. Highest paid player on the team. Does he dog it or play hard? From all I’ve seen, he plays hard every single second he’s out there. How about Bryce Harper? He seem like he’s chilling or is he an intense ballplayer?

My point isn’t that some players don’t dog it. My point is you can’t make a generalization that the guys who get paid a lot are the ones who don’t play hard.

I also think you’re taking for granted how hard it is to be locked in every single second of a 162 game season. Haven’t you ever had a few moments at your job where you weren’t pushing 100%? Sure they have an offseason, but in the modern game, I get the sense a lot of these guys work even harder in the offseason. It’s not like in the distant past when off-seasons were truly time off.

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

Bryce Harper? Plays his butt off every game. One of those hall of famers I speak of who never loses his love of the game. Dansby Swanson? Jury’s out. The guy isn’t hitting right now, and his spring training was quite poor. I get it, these things happen, and besides, it’s extremely early in the season. But if it carrie’s forward, what will be his response? Will he go into film rooms studying the next pitcher so he can better anticipate upcoming at bats? Will he work with coaches to identify subtle adjustments to his swing? Will he find creative alternative “hustle” ways to get on base - expertly protecting the plate to draw walks, stealing bases, bunting, advancing runners etc in order to regain some “juice” and potentially break the slump? Or will he accept mediocrity quietly, and settle for being a “good community and clubhouse guy”, ala Jason Heyward? I cant say at this point, but the former approach would be the responses of committed ballplayers. Let’s see how the season and his career unfold.

But how about instead of Dansby looking at Mookie Betts? Moved to second base last year and played it very well while not losing a beat offensively. Same at short this year. That doesn’t happen by accident or because the guy is a “natural athlete”. How many reps do you think the guy has taken the last couple of years to get those positions down? Commitment. Hall of Famer.

Marcus Semien? Comes to Texas, asked to give up his shortstop position. Doesn’t question. Plays an excellent second base. Plays every game. Commitment to excellence. Probable Hall of Famer.

Justin Verlander. Broken body. 41 years old. Has accomplished everything there is to accomplish in baseball. Rich beyond comprehension. Supermodel wife. Working his tail off to overcome injury and make it back for one more season. Need I say it?

You want to name exceptions? There they are. High skills plus uncompromised commitment result in elite players in the history of the game. Guys who command high salaries have proven they have the skills. But how about the commitment after the pay day? Can you see the differences between these guys I mentioned and the guy who jogs to first on a pop up - along with the majority of all high paid free agents?

[ ]

In reply to by TarzanJoeWallis

You want to know the other common thread? Cubs didn’t pay any of them. Harper would have been an awesome fit.

Again; the point isn’t the money. It’s the person, it’s who they are. I am sure I could find guys who haven’t made zilch not fully commit. How about Brailyn Marquez as a quick example?

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

The difference, of course, are the expectations and level of commitment on the part of the organization. When Brailyn Marquez or other low level minor leaguers don’t have the talent or level of commitment required to be a big league player they are simply released and another young guy who is more motivated gets his opportunity with little impact to the organization. If they’re highly ranked they may get a little more leeway but that’s where it ends.

When an organization invests millions of dollars on free agent with the expectation that that guy will fully commit to being an impact player and falls short it impacts an organization, sometimes setting them back for years:

  1. A manager and/or general manager’s job may be on the line. Therefore, often that player will have much more leeway to perform badly and/or slack so as to cover up the questionable decision to sign them. Jason Heyward, for example, was a starter long after his performance warranted it, thereby weakening the overall performance of the team for years.
  2. The organization will have less financial flexibility throughout the course of the contract. During the Heyward years, personnel decisions were undoubtedly influenced by that anchor of a contract. When a need was identified for an innings eater pitcher, rather than a providing a short term higher dollar contract to a pitcher who fit the bill, the Cubs chose to use prospect capital, resulting in the Quintana trade. This pattern was repeated and the end result was the decimation of the farm system.
  3. Lack of motivation and or performance of a “star” can have a detrimental effect on young players on the team and in the system as they are blocked by somebody they know is a substandard performer.

    It is not a coincidence that the 2016 bounce started shortly after the Soriano contract was done and that the current bounce is occurring in concert with Heyward being gone.

    Young players are lottery picks. While I do think the impact of huge bonuses for draft picks can be similarly demotivating (Hello Brett Jackson and Joey Bart!), young players are expected to  have a lottery pick element to them. A highly paid free agent has proven their skills and I would think would be held by team management and fans to a higher standard and always seek to play at the highest level possible. I find it extremely disappointing when they fail to do so, and it would make me as a front office guy extremely reluctant to throw big money and ESPECIALLY big years at any free agent. Occasionally you’ll get a hall of famer and it works out great. More often you get guys who get pampered and comfortable and end up going through the motions. I know most disagree with me but watch on field body language and hustle or lack thereof, listen to interviews, watch the level of commitment to conditioning, pay attention to non-on-the-field activities such as endorsements and side hustles. I believe it will become quite obvious who is honoring the commitments to their team and their fans to their fullest ability and who is along for the ride.

[ ]

In reply to by TarzanJoeWallis

This is way too much to read.

Marquez was the team’s top prospect and didn’t sign a big dollar IFA deal. But all of a sudden the work effort stopped or at least he didn’t keep himself in nearly as good of shape. He never made big dollars.

The ultimate, bottom line point I’m trying to make is it isn’t about who gets paid big and who doesn’t. It’s scouting and getting to really know a player. You have to take a risk sometimes but you at least want to have a handle on WHO the player is. Not everyone will stop trying when they get paid. Money isn’t the only player motivator.

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

Any player can lose motivation and stop putting in the effort. Because there was limited investment, the failure of Brailyn Marquez, while disappointing, was not a catastrophe for the organization. Heyward and his lack of commitment was.

I thoroughly disagree with the premise that a player who knows he is set for life feels the same motivation to perform as the kid struggling to maintain his dream. Striving for money and security are huge motivators. Achieving the goals takes away from that that drive. Basic human nature. 

That said, we do land in roughly the same place. Take epic free agent contracts or contract extensions seriously. Only undertake them when there is a defined need and the most prudent way to meet that need is with a particular signing. Have an exit strategy to whatever extent is possible. And always make sure you know the character of the player thoroughly before even entertaining the signing.

I 100% applaud Jed for not taking the bait on a long term 1st or 3rd baseman signing, and for structuring the Bellinger contract in such a way that he is unlikely to go soft and, even if he does,  the organizational cost will be minimized. A strategy later echoed in the Snell and Montgomery signings. 

Jed is in my mind one of the best executives in the game.

[ ]

In reply to by TarzanJoeWallis

You agreed with me but did it in a way I can still find an argument with. Well-internetted.

I don’t think Heyward was unmotivated. I think the team just couldn’t find a way to unlock the best version of him.

I’ll reserve my opinion on Jed until he at minimum guides a team to the playoffs and wins a round or something. He hasn’t done it since his first year in SD, with a team he inherited.

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

I respect Heyward as a genuinely good man and a pillar of the community, which some may argue transcends any sport. I get that and that’s a fine world view. Personally, I’m a piggish fan who wants my team to win!

My take is that very early in his Cub tenure Heyward became more interested in being a clubhouse mentor and in his off the field charitable work than putting effort into being the best ball player he could be. Perhaps that started with the adulation he received for his WS rain delay speech for which he will always be known.

Veteran guys who have seen success are often resistant to coaching. Add that to the front office imperative to play him everyday in hopes of a breakout to justify the contract which greatly limited in season opportunities for development work.  This is a huge dilemma whenever a high priced free agent nosedives.

Thus, a can’t miss, five tool free agent slid into a mediocre fixture in an uninspired lineup. Variations on this theme happen all the time.

[ ]

In reply to by TarzanJoeWallis

That was never the impression I got from Heyward. For whatever reason, the coaching and the execution didn’t line up. Sometimes that just happens, regardless of effort level.

Personally I want to see the players get paid their due. They’re what makes baseball great. Baseball is nothing without players. Owners and front offices are nothing without players

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

And that might just account for the differences in our viewpoints. To me the FAN is number one, not the player. No one has anything without fans.

I grew up in the days when I got home from school and caught the last few innings on WGN before Gilligan’s Island. Now that requires a subscription. When, on my measly allowance I could take a bus to a train to the Addison stop, watch my heroes, and spend less than $10 in the process. It makes me sad that today’s kids don’t have those options.

What changed? You would probably say it’s the greed of ownership. But that greed existed from the birth of the professional sport. What really changed is the strength of the players union, the greed of agents, and the stupidity of owners of irresponsible organizations who give in to and exceed every crazy demand.

Now that a single game costs hundreds of dollars to attend what is the result? A bunch of old men like all of us who grew up in baseball tradition while kids, particularly less privileged ones, are never exposed to that tradition. Without tradition baseball is nothing. Football is flashier, hockey is more exciting, and basketball appeals in the inner city and among the less privileged. If you don’t grow up a fan of baseball the chances are very good you never will be.

And while people argue that attendance levels have never been higher I doubt many young boys these days are passionately pouring over box scores daily the way we did. Only old men like us analyze these things to death.

I understand the days I pine for are gone (except maybe for minor league ball, which I find in many ways to be superior these days). That said, if elite players are going to be paid outlandish dollars at the long term expense of the game I expect to at least see maximum effort to do their best to justify that compensation. Anything short of that is completely unacceptable.

[ ]

In reply to by Charlie

Agreed. Owners are, after all, not nonprofit organizations. Parking and concessions, for example, have always been hugely inflated when compared to relative costs in other venues. But, I think it’s pretty naive to think the players union or their agents give a second thought to fans either. They do not walk around with haloes over their heads.

Owners and player reps all want the same thing - the maximum amount of money they can shake out of fans. And out of each other. Sadly, only the fan loses.

One other thing to note. Owners are not guaranteed a profit. Players and player reps make their dime - along with any side hustles they can collect on - regardless of performance.

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

I’m not placing the owners in a postive light. Only pointing out that absolving the players union and agents of being every bit as greedy as the owners is delusional. Both sides chase every dollar they can get with little regard to fans. I can’t understand why the vitriol is ONLY reserved for the owners.

[ ]

In reply to by TarzanJoeWallis

A different post called attention to your quote of

if elite players are going to be paid outlandish dollars at the long term expense of the game I expect to at least see maximum effort to do their best to justify that compensation. Anything short of that is completely unacceptable”

I don’t disagree with this, firstly. However, the reasons I personally feel the need to not comment on players mainly comes from two things: they are what makes the game great, which I’ve said above. And I disagree that baseball requires fans. It doesn’t. There are games that go on every day without fans. The business of Major League Baseball relies on fans, but baseball itself only requires players. (I do agree the prices to attend games are sickening and minor league games are a much better value and can even be more fun. Albeit a lot fewer fans). Secondly, my first memory of any sort of financial strife in the game was the 94 strike (I wasn’t super aware of this because I was quite young— I grew up with the dreadful 90s teams and the magical 98 season). But all you’d hear about is player greed. And growing up, all you’d hear is player greed, because the owners had and still have the media in their pockets when it comes to labor strife. It took a while to change my thinking on that because of that programming, but I’m there now. It’s harder in todays game with social media to really only get the owners side, which is good.

Are players looking to extract as much from the owners as they can? Yes. But they are much closer to David than Goliath in that fight. It’s not about the guys signing huge deals. It’s about the guys at the margins. That’s who I think about when I think of labor relations. And those are the guys who you’re describing when you say you like guys who give it everything they had. They’re the ones who are most negatively affected by owner greed.

Finally, (sorry for this novel), the reason I mention the quote is that you expect that of players and that’s fine, but what do YOU expect of owners? To put every penny they can into putting their best chance at a championship on the field every day, every season? Because if you expect 100% from players, isn’t it fair to expect that same 100% from their bosses?

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

I won’t even address fans not being important since every penny of revenue in the game originates from fans, be it as attendees of games, tv and radio consumers, apparel wearers, or intended targets of advertisers.

But let’s talk about owners and their role in the partnership that is baseball.

A player’s responsibility is pretty straightforward. Use the natural skills you have, refine and hone them, and put maximum effort to contribute to the success of the team, with end goal of a World Series championship. Add to that being a decent person and ambassador for the team and sport.

Now, what do owners do? Let’s see. They write every check required to run the game, from players salaries to travel to scouts to facilities to janitors to after game meals to the first baseman’s jock strap with no guarantee of return. They oversee multiple operations that run scouting and analytics departments, executive staffs, minor league systems and communications. In the Ricketts case they get to subsidize less valuable franchises and walk the line between maintaining the character of a 108 year old facility while providing state of the art facilities for players and fans. They have to answer to minority shareholders as well as pay taxes and make sure they properly line the pockets of crooked politicians. They have to be mindful that fans always have as choices the Gary Railcats, Joliet Slammers, Schaumburg Flyers and Chicago Dogs as perfectly acceptable and infinitely more affordable options, all within driving distance, not to mention MLB competition on the Southside and 90 miles to the north.

That’s a pretty good start, if not a comprehensive list, of what owners bring to the table.

So there is a bit more to ownership than kicking legs up on a desk and watching the money roll in. Owners and players are both vital cogs in the game and codependent on each other. Without owners, players are great street stickball players and little more.

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

By the way, please note that I never once referred to players themselves as greedy. They turn over their fates to players unions and agents whose job it is to get top dollar for the players they represent. The reps and agents certainly are greedy but that’s their job so in the end I don’t really have a problem with any of that. If anything, the gripe I have about the amount of money in the game lays squarely at the feet of irresponsible owners who kowtow to and exceed every agent demand.

The only issue I have with players is with the ones who get their top dollar and then don’t have enough respect for the fans to reciprocate with maximum effort. Sometime when I’m not monopolizing the blog I’ll get into what maximum effort means to me.

[ ]

In reply to by TarzanJoeWallis

I couldn't agree more with this: "...if elite players are going to be paid outlandish dollars at the long term expense of the game I expect to at least see maximum effort to do their best to justify that compensation. Anything short of that is completely unacceptable." Thanks for your input, Tarzan Joe Wallis! 

bellinger off the f'n scoreboard in RF.

suzuki hit a 115mph homer earlier in the game.  morel also hit a no-doubt HR.

cooper HR, triple, and double.

luke little starting wednesday?  okay...

dude finished last night's game.  they're doing a "bullpen game" with ben brown eating a chunk after the 1st or 2nd inning i guess.

Let it snow. Current temp 35 degrees.

Recent comments

  • crunch (view)

    unreal.  be crazy to see where this goes in a month or 2....unless it gets too crazy to ignore at the mlb level.

  • TarzanJoeWallis (view)

    And another solo shot in the third. He’s not hitting cheapies either. Definitely capturing my attention at this point.

  • Dolorous Jon Lester (view)

    He is on a serious heater right now 

  • TarzanJoeWallis (view)

    Brennan Davis two out first inning grand salami for Iowa.

  • crunch (view)


    walkoff win!  morel has been involved in at least 4 walk-off wins this year by my count.

    his bWAR is tied for next to last on the team (-0.1)...just saying.

  • crunch (view)

    ha.  the mccutchen AB where he almost homered in the 6th (foul) got me thinking about the mccutchen/furries thing.

    it's a coincidence, but mccutchen does VERY well at the plate when pittsburgh's annual furry convention (Anthrocon) is in town and there's a home game.  all 4 days of the convention will be home games for PIT.

    be on the lookout for mccutchen's twitter account to simply post "Furries" during the week of the convention.

    he's aware of the coincidence and plays into it.

    baseball is weird.  social media is weird.  furries are also weird, but whatever...ya'll do ya'll.…

  • crunch (view)

    i love that wrigley is packed, but you can tell a lot of these fans are new(ish) to in-person baseball.

    pop outs that don't even reach the warning track are getting huge fan pops as possible homers.

    that said, it's good there's so much fresh eyes on the field product.  the game needs a constant influx of newer fans.

    i noticed a lot of 20-somethings really getting into baseball during the covid era.  they also really got into baseball cards, but that's another side show in itself.  the baseball card boom died down a bit, but the interest in baseball overall seems to have stuck around.

  • crunch (view)

    "The New York Post’s Joel Sherman reports the Mets offered first baseman Pete Alonso a seven-year, $158 million contract extension last summer."

    22.5m a year.  on one hand, no way his agent would sign that.  on the other hand, the mets obviously see some warning signs long-term...most likey his lack of body conditioning.  he's got a very pre-roids era slugger build.

  • crunch (view)

    "we gave a manager 8m dollars a year." - jed

    "lol, patrick wisdom gonna lead off." - counsell

  • crunch (view)

    imanaga walking the leadoff man on 5 pitches.  really rare for a dude that hates to walk anyone in any situation.