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 seven players are on OPTIONAL ASSIGNMENT to minors and seven players are on the 15-DAY IL

Last updated 5-21-2024

* bats or throws left
# bats both

PITCHERS: 13
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

CATCHERS: 2
Miguel Amaya
Yan Gomes

INFIELDERS: 7
* Michael Busch
Nico Hoerner
Nick Madrigal
Christopher Morel
Dansby Swanson
Luis Vazquez
Patrick Wisdom

OUTFIELDERS: 4
* Cody Bellinger
# Ian Happ
Seiya Suzuki
* Mike Tauchman

OPTIONED: 7
Kevin Alcantara, OF
Michael Arias, P
Alexander Canario, OF
* Pete Crow-Armstrong, OF
Brennen Davis, OF
* Miles Mastrobuoni, INF
* Matt Mervis, 1B

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 @ Diamondbacks: Series Thread (Games 16-18)

By holding on to their 3-2 lead Sunday afternoon, the Cubs collected their first road series win of the season and improved to 9-6 on the season. Michael Busch "drives the bus" to Arizona next, where he'll have a chance to continue his current four-game homerun streak against the 8-8 Diamondbacks. See below for matchups. 

 




Game 16, Monday, April 15, 8:40 pm central
CHC: RHP Ben Brown (0-0, 6.10 ERA)
ARZ: RHP Merrill Kelly (2-0, 2.29 ERA) 

Ben Brown is first up in this week's episode of who will remain in the rotation when Jameson Taillon returns from the IL. Brown has made three appearances and struck out 11 over 10.1 innings. Most recently he threw 4.2 scoreless innings against the Padres. He has barely shown his third pitch, a changeup, so far. Mixing that in occasionally could figure into getting another inning or more out of his starts. 

Kelly has been solid in three starts so far. He's been very stingy with free passes and has induced plenty of ground balls. He's coming off a fairly strong 2023 in which he went 12-8 in thirty starts. 

 




Game 17, Tuesday, April 16, 8:40 pm central
CHC: RHP Kyle Hendricks (0-2, 12.08 ERA)
ARZ: LHP Tommy Henry (0-1, 5.79 ERA) 

Hendricks went five innings but allowed seven earned runs in his last start. He has yet to allow fewer than five earned runs in an outing despite a 50% ground ball rate. While he is still getting some weak contact, he has been hammered when missing in the zone. 

Henry, a 26-year-old lefty, made 16 MLB starts and missed a big chunk of 2023 with elbow inflammation. He's given up a lot of contact in the air in prior seasons and has been hurt frequently by the homerun. He's given up a homerun each start this year and has walked seven in fourteen innings. 

 





Game 18, Wednesday, April 17, 2:40 pm central
CHC: LHP Jordan Wicks (0-2, 5.68 ERA)
ARZ: RHP Brandon Pfaadt (1-0, 6.48 ERA) 

Wicks lost the zone for a bit in his last start and took a loss after allowing four earned runs. He's continued to strike out more than a batter per inning, but this time he walked four, hit a batter, and threw a wild pitch. 

Pfaadt, a highly regarded prospect in past years, struggled in the regular season before breaking out in the 2023 postseason. He's putting up good strikeout and walk numbers so far but has allowed three homeruns and twenty total hits in 16.2 innings pitched. 

 




The Cubs return to Chicago Thursday to begin a four-game series with the Marlins.

Comments

Suzuki out with oblique strain. Canario indeed is called up. No word on Morel so that might be a red herring (or a red digit).

AZ lineup is posted but Counsell is always late to post his lineup.

5 IN A ROW!

hack wilson, ryne sandberg, sammy sosa, christopher morel, and michael busch.

[ ]

In reply to by crunch

Have to admit I was initially disappointed the Cubs traded away the upside of Jackson Ferris but Busch is making a believer out of me.  If I still lived in midwest guessing we would have invented some drink special named a Busch Bomb at the local drinking establishment to celebrate his homers.  

[ ]

In reply to by Sonicwind75

i was blown away confused/pissed when it was announced the cubs were trading for y.almonte.

i was thrilled when m.busch was announced as part of the trade.

it's really weird to have the "you gotta take this payroll guy, too" (1.9m) part of the trade leak before the main piece.

the cubs didn't get a deal given what they gave up, but i was very happy to have a guy like busch in the fold with so much club control.

[ ]

In reply to by crunch

I have to disagree. They got not just A triple A stud but THE AAA stud of the entire PCL for a position player who hadn’t played above the AZL level and a pitcher who was rather mediocre in his first taste of pro ball at low A. I’m not saying the guys they traded haven’t shown great promise but they have a very long way to go and a whole lot to prove before they make the bigs. Especially since Busch filled a defined need (whether it had been at third or first) I take this trade any day of the week and don’t bother looking back.

[ ]

In reply to by TarzanJoeWallis

i was strongly happy about the deal, but words can barely describe how quickly zyhir hope went from "interesting youngster" to "high end prospect" when he showed up in arizona post-draft.

it may not have shown up in the team prospect numbered rankings, but the dodgers had their eyes on such a low level guy for a reason and the cubs knew what they gave up.

[ ]

In reply to by crunch

as of now, zyhir hope is the dodgers #20 prospect on mlb.com (ferris #7).  he made 0 national "top 100" overall lists.  that may be a different story soon enough.

if hope is not in the team top-10 by year's end i would be shocked.

i don't know what happened between draft day and a couple months in arizona, but he got the attention of many organizations outside of the cubs when he showed up.

[ ]

In reply to by crunch

What would have surprised me is the Dodgers, who have traditionally been outstanding in evaluating and developing talent, giving away Busch for nothing. They obviously saw something in both of the guys. Perhaps one or both will be future superstars.

That said, the old cliche is that the level of competition increases ten fold for every level moved up. Ferris and Hope both have a long way to go. We’ll just have to wait and see.

For now, I’m watching Busch put the team on his shoulders while the presumed offensive star of the team flails and doesn’t seem to have a plan beyond “waiting for the numbers to even out”. 

I thought it was a good and fair trade at the time - a talented but surplus guy for the Dodgers that filled an immediate need for the Cubs in exchange for potential pieces of the Dodgers future - and I’m awfully glad Busch is a Cub.

[ ]

In reply to by Sonicwind75

I had mixed emotions when I heard of the trade, as I have with most trades that involve high potential prospects.  But that is because I hate to trade a high potential prospect for a veteran with only a few years control, and with a much lower potential than the prospects give away.  I hated the trade of Cease and Jiminez for Quinta, because I viewed Quintana as a decent, but not top pitcher, being traded for two very high-potential prospects.  I disliked the trade for Chapman, because a high-potential prospect was traded for a rental, although in this case, the fact that the rental was a top player greatly softened the blow.  The trade of Ferris and Hope for Busch seemed even at the time, to be a good one, even though they gave up one of my favorite prospects.  The return was a high-potential prospect with 6 years of control, at a time when he could be a difference maker on the team.

13 games hardly proves that it was a good trade, but at least it was a reasonable one, no matter how it turns out.  So far, so good.

[ ]

In reply to by Bill

While the Chapman trade helped to cement a championship I honestly think that trade was made in a different era. Nobody trades their best prospects for rentals anymore.

The Quintana trade was a stinker from day one. It seemed to be a product of Theo’s unshakable faith in his 2016 “core” and the consistent and mistaken idea that they were always just one guy away from a return to WS glory. The mistake was repeated several times and I think that realization along with a general evolution in baseball thinking has helped to shape Jed and the way he operates today.

[ ]

In reply to by TarzanJoeWallis

Mostly agree, but I don’t think it was as much “unshakeable faith” as it was a series of unclear choices in the moment that have become obvious with hindsight.  

The upside outcome for the coming year for any player was always much higher than the return on selling. It was like Texas Hold’em purgatory of having 4 to an A-K led flush…  impossible to get away from. 


 

[ ]

In reply to by First.Pitch.120

I think it was pretty clear that practically all of “the core” was going to be gone after the 2021 season and that utterly gutting the farm system to chase a championship with the same guys year after year until they all departed wasn’t going to end well. That was talked about as early as 2017.

I don’t think it’s hindsight to say they would have been better off from a sustainability standpoint trading some of those pieces for the best prospect packages available and introducing some of the kids. For example, I was hoping real time they would trade Schwarber during the 2016 offseason to an AL team as a DH when the DH was AL only. Fresh off being a WS hero he could have fetched quite a haul. But, alas, he was a member of the vaunted, untouchable “core”.

[ ]

In reply to by TarzanJoeWallis

That pretty well sums up the situation.  Epstein, the media and the fans became obsessed with the concept of a "window of opportunity" that had to be taken advantage of before it closed.  Thus the trade for Quintana, and the trade of Soler for crap.

The way to deal with a "window of opportunity" is not to sacrifice everything to win, but to extend that window.  Epstein knew that he was having his best players, Rizzo, Baez and Bryant in the same year, with Contreras the following year, at the same time that the pitching staff was growing elderly and on the verge of declining.  A responsible administration would have moved one of the ""core" two years earlier, and a second one the next year, in order to prevent the otherwise necessity of "tanking" when they left at the same time.  they had to know that there was no way they could have all been extended, and still leave room for growth.

Other than the Dodgers and the Yankees, no team can maintain a consistent level of production without a consistent flow of high ceiling, low cost controlled young players coming up from the farm.  We have lived through the errors of the past, and hopefully have learned enough from them to prevent a reoccurance of it in a few years.

suzuki says he injured his oblique running to 1st, not swinging.  okay.  it's gonna be that kind of 2024 cubs year, huh?

i would say that's good news compared to screwing it up swinging, but i'm not familiar with the recovery time of people screwing up their oblique by running.

right side is at least different from his left side oblique injury last year.

per Tribune: Suzuki MRI results pending from yesterday so we should get a timetable for return later today.

matt shaw (AA) has a .381/.552/.905 line through 7 games...3 homers and a triple.  6 games at 3rd, 1 game DH (5 PO, 7 A, 0 E).

that's somewhat fun news.

cade horton with his 2024 AA debut of 4ip 4h 0bb 4k, 1r/0er is followed up even better...

4ip 1h 1bb 5K, 0r/er

he's still on a pitch count restriction, btw.  he probably could have gone 6+ innings in both outings if he was off a leash.

I can’t speak to how many organizations had newfound interest in Zyhir Hope but I did talk to a Dodger scout who told that the Ddodgers always had their on him. 

I hardly think of my self as a “scout” but I saw a beautiful smooth left hand swing, easy power,  an aggressive base runner as in very limited action, a good defensive player. He certainly caught my attention, moreso than anyone else on the ACL team last year.

Here is an interesting thought:  There seems to be an assumption that the Cubs had to trade 2 prospects to get Busch with Almonte thrown in to even out the trade.  What if the initial trade was Ferris for Busch, but Hoyer wanted Almonte (a cheap RP) and Hope was the ask from the Dodgers.   This scenario makes the trade more complicated to ponder the future ramifications.  

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

Right on schedule, just read an article in Baseball America entitled "10 MLB Prospects Outside The Top 100 Who Have Our Attention".  Zyhir Hope was one of the prospects featured. It stated that he's "one of the biggest arrow-up sleeper prospects in the lower levels right now."

 

Not sharing to be negative about the trade, getting a top 100 prospect who is MLB ready should carry a heavy prospect cost.  But man, Dodger sure are good at identifying and developing young talent. Andrew Friedman seems to have successfully merged Ray's development with Yankees financial might to create a juggernaut of an organization.  

Cubs recall RHSP Hayden Wesneski and select RHRP Colten Brewer from AAA Iowa (Brewer was Iowa's closer), option Luke Little and Daniel Palencia to Iowa, and transfer Julian Merryweather to the 60-day IL.  

BTW, Brewer is out of minor league options in case that becomes an issue at some point.

Also, now that Merryweather has been transferred to the 60-day IL, he cannot be reinstated any earlier than June 5th. 

The fifth inning has not been kind to Wicks this season. Giving up leadoff doubles to Tucker Barnhart is also not good for business. IIRC, the Cubs are on the hook for the majority of Barnhart’s salary this season to add insult to injury (could definitely be wrong here). 

dansby takes the team lead in SB today after a SB with 2 SB total.  the team has 3.  madrigal has the other one.

cubs also have 7 triples, 7 players each.

Nice work by Wesneski with some solid defense behind him and the late tack on runs were welcome. Gladly take a 5-4 West Coast swing, particularly down two key starting pitchers … Now just don’t get swept by the Marlins for Pete’s sake. 

[ ]

In reply to by Eric S

he's a low-level cubs star in the modern history of the cubs (c.zambrano, k.wood, r.dempster, etc), but that star has dimmed...and has been dimming since 2021.

2024 has been ugly the whole way and we're only in mid-april.  homers aside (even though there's been 7 in 17ip) he gave up 29 hits in 20 spring innings and 31 in 17 regular season innings.

he's pretty much only got 2 pitches at this point in his career and the mix isn't fooling anyone.  he threw a noticable amount more curves in his last start to add to the mix and it didn't help his issues.  he don't have many moves left to break out.

just waiting to hear patrick wisdom and masterboney are spotted at the airport going in opposite directions...

aj puk going for the marlins (lefty)...gotta imagine we'll see wisdom in the lineup.

someone has to make room for taillon, too.

[ ]

In reply to by crunch

Cubdom needs to prepare themselves for Wicks to be sent to Iowa for Taillon to come up.
Ben Brown has 4 appearances. Wicks has 4 appearances.
Ben has 16.1 IP.  Wicks has 17 IP
Ben was a 1.1 WHIP.  Wicks has a 1.7 WHIP. Wicks does have significantly more SOs. 
Ben has been better, though.
I love Wicks. I think he's a fighter and his stuff has improved.
But, Jed isn't ditching Hendricks just yet. He should. But he won't.
Hendricks should go to the IL and Taillon-Imanaga-Assad-Wicks-Brown should be the rotation.
Wont' happen though.

AZ Phil,
Did you agree with the demotion of Luke Little? He'd been pretty good up until the AZ/wild pitch appearance. I know that can't jettison Smyly (just yet) so they didn't need another LHRP. Especially with Leiter effectively being a LHRP. I still thought he deserved to stay. It's not permanent. He'll be back. Lots of moves to come with Taillon, Steele and other guys coming and going.

Also, do you see Hodge being able to "control/command" his stuff to get a chance this year?
Is Arias better than Hodge?   Thanks

[ ]

In reply to by Childersb3

Childersb3: I think there was an issue with Luke Little coming into a game with men on base. He seems to need a "clean" inning to be dominant. So he is a future closer and needs to be used in that role at AAA. Same goes for Michael Arias. He needs to come into a "clean" inning, and is a future closer and needs to be used in that role at AA. Porter Hodge is a more versatile pitcher, a better version of Keegan Thompson (multi-inning RP). But Little, Arias, and Hodge (probably in that order) are the Cubs top three RP prospects (all three are Cubs Top 15 prospects).

So, let’s do a little war gaming. Taillon is back for tonight’s game. He pitched two rehab games, just a few innings each, and not especially sharp. Let’s face it, he hasn’t been lights out since the Cubs gave him the big contract. In other words, as flat out bad as Hendricks has been, the chances of Taillon being the savior don’t look exactly promising.

If Taillon is equally ineffective or perhaps even worse, what’s the next move? Winning teams can often find a way to work around a dud fifth starter - kinda. Two dud starters make things much more difficult.

I believe the biggest reason for the recent bullpen moves was dissatisfaction with the recent blowing of big leads and the recognition that the bullpen wasn’t all it was thought to be. In other words, they are exploring alternate options and configurations. If similar juggling becomes necessary (even more so than it already is), what kind of reasonable maneuvering do we think could be explored?

[ ]

In reply to by TarzanJoeWallis

Pro teams have to play their "big money" guys if they are healthy and not "locker room" issues.
The Cubs wanted to deal JHey off well before they bought him out. They just didn't want to pay him to play for someone else for that long. Jed did give him 20+mil to play for LAD last yr.
Jed might also let Kyle walk at some point this year. Similar scenario to JHey, except Jed thought Kyle was going to be good/solid in '24!!
You'd think Smyly is in the same book as well. Same with Neris (he's a 1yr vet RP, so he's not really in this convo too much).
That's ~35mil between those three and those three are going to get opportunities until at least late June) over younger guys even if their performance is "iffy".
But, Jed is going to play Taillon a lot. They have to try and justify that contract and hope a veteran works out.
So, Taillon, Imanaga, and Hendricks are locks for the rest of April and probably May.
Assad, Brown and Wicks handle the last spots until Steele is ready.
Now, you're question has real merit when Steele comes back. That will interesting if Brown is still good and Hendricks is still bad. But Taillon is entirely safe as long as he's healthy.

And the bullpen moves were "money" based as well. Smyly has actually been okay. But he hasn't been clearly better than Little. Little had one bad outing. But Smyly makes 9mil. If they needed another RHRP and one of Little and Smyly had to go, it was going to Little. But that doesn't mean Smyly is one of the best 13 arms for the team. 

[ ]

In reply to by Childersb3

I suspect Counsell/Hottovy will use the piggy-back extensively, with Taillon and Hendricks pitching as the "pig" (and with a very short leash) and some combo of Wicks, Brown, and Wesneski (whichever two do not start) as the "backers."  

Keep in mind that Keegan Thompson has a minor league option available, and if Yency Almonte is not outrighted by 4/26 he cannot be sent to the minors without his consent after that date. Almonte is out of minor league options, so I am talking about him getting outrighted to the minors if he is not claimed off waivers, and if he is claimed off waivers, the Cubs save the pro-rated portion of his $1.9M salary, which helps lower the Cubs 2024 AAV.

[ ]

In reply to by TarzanJoeWallis

I wanted Almonte gone last week, but that was before Merryweather went down and Little got demoted. Almonte in his last 5 appearances has gone 4.1 IP with no ER or Runs. NO hits, 3 BBs and 8 SO. He did hit 96 with his 2S FB in AZ on Tues.
I don't see Jed waiving him when we have injuries all over and guys with options that can be sent down.
I probably won't like the move Jed makes, but he can't play the "let's hope no one wants his 1.7mil remaining deal and we can hide him in Iowa" card.
That's why I think the current Bullpen stays as is and Wicks goes to Iowa.
I don't like that, but that's the fix I see.
We'll find out soon enough!!!

[ ]

In reply to by TarzanJoeWallis

Based on what Jed has done in the past, I’d say the plan is to

-give Hendricks another few starts
-give Taillon some runway ot get his season underway

-Mix and match in the bullpen and see what sticks

Jed usually doesn’t do a whole lot of waiver wire plays in-season, at least early in the season. He only reallly did that after he blew up the rosters in 21 and 22 because they needed bodies (guys like Schwindel, Fargas, etc).

I think he’s a little handcuffed by a full 40 man in that he can’t really maneuver much with giving anyone showing ability at AAA (R Thompson/ Sanders/ Edwards etc). Brewer has the most tenuous grip there, and we will see what kind of chance he gets. Other than his spot, there isn’t a ton of 40 man wiggle room.

I’m very curious to see what happens with Brown now that Taillon returns. Bullpen? Wicks to Iowa? 

Recent comments

  • crunch (view)

    luckily the team isn't running low on MLB-ready SP...what's in AAA isn't ready for the big time yet (c.horton) or trash (literally everyone else).

  • TarzanJoeWallis (view)

    Teheran has been in the same neighborhood. I doubt either were ever intended to be more than minor league depth.

  • crunch (view)

    d.straily has give up 4 homers in 2.1ip for iowa.  his ERA is in the 7's and his WHIP is close to 2.

    it's not going well for him.

  • crunch (view)

    this COL/OAK game crazy fun...needed this after yet another poor showing cubs loss.

  • Eric S (view)

    Shutout by the Braves in three of the six game series. Cubs fortunate to get two wins. Cubs offense in need of a collective viagra-voodoo cocktail, stat!

  • crunch (view)

    he gets a 2nd inning...leadoff single on the 1st pitch.

    2ip 4h 1bb 1k, 2r/er

  • crunch (view)

    1ip 2h 1bb 1k, 2r/er...one of the outs was a popout about as close to the ivy as you can get without being in the ivy.

    not encouraging.  he may or may not get another inning.  he probably shouldn't have gotten that inning in a 1-0 game, but with the way the cubs bats are going it may not even matter.

  • crunch (view)

    it's sad watching hendricks come out the pen...even more sad giving up a single to his 1st batter and walking the 2nd batter.

  • crunch (view)

    man...busch can't even make contact on anything breaking lately, even light breaking fastballs.  he's either frozen or misses badly.

  • crunch (view)

    he could productively use this time to work on his autograph.