Cubs MLB Roster

Cubs Organizational Depth Chart
40-Man Roster Info

62 players are at MLB Spring Training 

40 players are on the MLB RESERVE LIST (roster is full) 
22 players are MLB Spring Training NON-ROSTER INVITEES (NRI) 

Last updated 2-27-2024
 
* bats or throws left
# bats both

PITCHERS: 21
Yency Almonte
Adbert Alzolay 
Michael Arias
Javier Assad
Ben Brown
Jose Cuas
Kyle Hendricks
Porter Hodge
* Shota Imanaga
Caleb Kilian
Mark Leiter Jr
* Luke Little
Julian Merryweather
Hector Neris 
Daniel Palencia
* Drew Smyly
* Justin Steele
Jameson Taillon
Keegan Thompson
Hayden Wesneski 
* Jordan Wicks

NRI PITCHERS: 11 
Colten Brewer 
Chris Clarke 
Carl Edwards Jr 
* Edwin Escobar 
* Richard Lovelady 
Sam McWilliams 
* Thomas Pannone 
Ethan Roberts 
Cam Sanders 
Riley Thompson 
* Brad Wieck 

CATCHERS: 2
Miguel Amaya
Yan Gomes

NRI CATCHERS: 5  
Jorge Alfaro 
Pablo Aliendo
Joe Hudson 
Haydn McGeary
* Bryce Windham

INFIELDERS: 9
* Michael Busch 
Nico Hoerner
Nick Madrigal
* Miles Mastrobuoni
* Matt Mervis
Christopher Morel
Dansby Swanson
Luis Vazquez
Patrick Wisdom

NRI INFIELDERS: 4 
David Bote 
Matt Shaw 
* Dominic Smith
Chase Strumpf 

OUTFIELDERS: 8
Kevin Alcantara
* Cody Bellinger 
Alexander Canario
* Pete Crow-Armstrong
Brennen Davis
# Ian Happ
Seiya Suzuki
* Mike Tauchman 

NRI OUTFIELDERS: 2 
* Owen Caissie  
* David Peralta
 



Minor League Rosters
Rule 5 Draft 
Minor League Free-Agents

Echos of Long Toss and Towel Drills Past

Rich Harden was all the news yesterday even though there was nothing new going on. Harden was newsworthy because he's starting the spring camp with long toss rather than work off the mound like the other pitchers. He's been on an off-season strengthening program for an achy-breaky shoulder that everyone in Cubs camp is still struggling to label. It's kind of like having a family member with a psychiatric diagnosis in the 1950's. Nobody wants to label the poor fella because of the stigma and gossip. Sun-Times beat reporter Gordon Wittenmyer, in his blog, was irked that once again there was misinformation delivered this off-season regarding what the diagnosis of Harden's shoulder issues are.

Can anybody tell me what the advantage is in omitting those details and being vague about these things? It's not like the Cubs have to protect the information for the purposes of shopping Harden or for any on-the-field competitive reasons (scouts have eyes).

I've covered three other teams in my career, and the ones that were most up front about these kinds of things had the fewest headaches with the way the information got out. And the fans stayed well informed, without the yo-yo effect.

Bruce Miles, The Daily Herald's Cubs beat writer also chimed in via his blog:

Comment: This issue regarding his shoulder is beginning to sound too much like Prior all over again.. Hopefully not, though.

Bruce Miles: That was my first reaction, having lived through the Prior/prior nightmares. This is a little more nuanced. Kerry Wood made no bones about having a tear in his shoulder and telling us. A Cubs guy said Rich likes to handle it his own way. I'll give him that, respecting his privacy. I've always felt that if a team and/or player just comes out and says what the deal is, we deal with it and move on instead of operating under all this mystery. It's fair to say he's got some sort of tear in there.

As I said, the proof will be in how he throws the ball and how long he lasts.

Harden clearly doesn't use medical terminology but says he'll be fine. He can do what he wants, because it's his shoulder and there are laws that protect patients to their privacy although those rules get bent for celebrities and athletes via the press/paparazzi and the microscopes they put them under.

Carrie Muskat at mlb.com also interviewed Harden (here) generating this info:

He knows the word "tear" makes people skittish. There may be a tear, but it's nothing to fret about. Surgery was not something Harden considered.

To review, Harden had an MRI-Arthrogram in Oct 08, after his  loss in game 3 of the NLDS, which is the best diagnostic exam short of an arthroscopic procedure. The post test information released to the press was that Harden had "subtle laxity" but no rotator cuff or labrum damage. The Cubs subsequently picked up Harden's $7 Million option. Then during the January 09 Cubs Convention, GM Jim Hendry in discussing Harden said the word "tear" in describing Harden's problem. Thus providing Wittenmyer and Miles eye-rolling material as to what is going on.

Having a non-full thickness rotator cuff tear (ala Kerry Wood) can be managed non-surgically and that's what they are doing... including a spring training that will cast echos from the ghosts of springs past:
---
compare and contrast:

Harden:The right-hander did throw long toss and was seen smiling a lot on the first day of workouts.


Wood: "I'm letting it go and throwing all my pitches," Wood said. "It's nice to go on the mound and actually work on stuff instead of worrying if it's going to hurt. It's nice to get up and go."

He'd like to avoid the disabled list. Wood began last season still rehabbing from arthroscopic shoulder surgery, which he had in August 2005. He was able to pitch in four games from May 18 to June 6, but they weren't good outings and his velocity was off.

When the tear was revealed, Wood opted to skip another operation and rehab. That tear may never completely heal.

"Probably not all the way, but it's definitely strong enough to do it's job," he said. (2-14-07)


Prior: "I had some issues," Prior said. "I had some significant things I had to correct. He saw some things [in his shoulder] that weren't as good as he'd like to see in a 26-year-old."

Prior has "looseness" in his shoulder, which is genetic, and which helps his delivery but also means he has to do a lot of shoulder strengthening exercises. His problems began when he collided with Atlanta's Marcus Giles in 2003. (2-16-07)

 Wood: Chicago Cubs pitcher Kerry Wood did his long toss drills on Friday, and may be ahead of schedule..."It's pretty amazing," Wood said Friday. "It feels pretty good today, and today's better than yesterday. I expect the same tomorrow." (3-10-06)


Prior: Chicago Cubs pitcher Mark Prior is taking a different approach in an attempt to get through Spring Training injury-free.

"We're doing a lot more endurance," Prior said Tuesday. "I've been on throwing programs before but this is a little bit more structured and we're trying to build up more arm strength, doing extended amounts of sets, if that makes sense. I'm sitting out there throwing 20, 25 at a certain distance, then taking a little break, then going back a little farther.

"It's a lot more structured," he said. "I think I'm responding to it well. We talked about it last year to take it slower, a little more methodical. I don't enjoy not being on the mound right now. But whatever you're dealt with, you deal with it." (2-21-06)

Finally, I've found the link that defines the purpose of the now infamous "towel drill". It's a rehab bonanza article by Carrie Muskat discussing the simultaneous February 22, 2006 rehab status of Wood, Prior, Wade Miller and Angel Guzman, a virtual superfecta!

Mark Prior also did his long-toss drills early as well as some towel drills off the mound. The towel drills are designed to get the pitchers back on the mound, acclimated to the slope and getting their balance.

Comments

Given that Jimbo had to trade off or let go guys of like DeRosa and Woody to fit in a tight payroll limit, I doubt he would have picked up Harden's option if he did not feel like he could make atleast 2/3rds of his starts, which is 22 for a top of the rotation type guy that you would expect 34 starts from. With this weak division all we need Harden for is October anyway, we should just try the first 6-man rotation in MLB history with Z-Harden-Lilly-Dempster-Marshall-Heilman.

I'm tired of the Prior/Wood saga...they are gone....it's sickening to have to deal with this again with Harden....i don't care! As long as we stay healthy the division should be easy....therefore as long as he's ready to pitch the second half of the year...i'm fine with it! We knew what we got when we picked him up...so let's just deal with it. Why there isn't more worry with Zambrano is what bothers me...nobody thinks his eye infection is a problem, there aren't any details on what type of infection, is it corneal ulcer or conjunctivitis? Then the whole issue of Lasix, what doctor is going to operate on a guy with an infection. I think this depth (Marshall, Heilman, Guadin, Shark) that Hendry has picked up may be of considerable importance in the upcoming months...4 man rotation for most of the first month is great (limited Harden). Nice to hear this peavy nonsense go away...don't want to hear about it again...unless we are actually getting him and back ups for catastrophic injurys are still on the team. Looks like the back up third basemen is going to be a reed johnson like acquisition which is great, however it may be the end of Hoffpower. Go Cubs!

ah the towel drill... it helps you get your mechanics straight by not putting a familiar weight/balance load on your hand. it's natural to grip and rip, but when you take the grip out of the equation someone can concentrate on "other" pitching mechanics by taking the familiar feel out of pitching while providing enough of a balance/load/resistance on the end of the arm so the shoulder doesn't feel like it's going to fly off. ...but it's more fun to just make 10,000 stupid jokes about towels, doughnuts, and infield rakes. i wonder what some would think of the rubberbands-on-a-fence shoulder rehab tool...it looks just about as stupid as the towels.

[ ]

In reply to by Rob G.

beginning to hate twitter already... "Gaudin looks like he's starting his own clubhouse Amish clique with a supergoat. 1 day ago" ...along with other vague as all hell micro-statements hope it pays well...brings a new definition to "McNews"...watch out USA Today.

"If Kurt Warner can disappear for five years, I can disappear for three." — Mark Prior, who hopes he's healthy enough to get a job in San Diego's starting rotation. Not getting the comparison Mark.

What do you guys think the chances are that we'll bring Harden back beyond 2009? Assuming he makes his 20-25 starts and does OK, what would he command in the market? $15-20 million a year? I just think we have about a 2-3 year window left with our current core group of players (Lee, Ramirez, Zambrano, Soriano) before we need to move to the next phase, and I don't really see where we are going long-term. We have a LOT of backloaded contracts due over the next few years, so what then?

[ ]

In reply to by Ahone Ahtwo Ahthree

I believe Harden will be the only Cubs starter coming off of the books after 2009. I don't know what other pitchers will be free agents around the majors, but I would think another offseason like this one is on it's way next year--meaning that if the American economy rebounds later, long-term contracts signed in the 2009-2010 offseason will look favorable to clubs 2012-ish. Harden isn't the sort of guy you sign when it's a buyers market. He's the sort of guy you gamble on when it's a seller's market because you can't afford the other guys who don't have tears in their rotator cuffs. That's how I've come to think of him at least. Harden seems like a bad gamble going forth. Actually, right now picking up his option for 2009 seems like it was probably a bad gamble, but I'm not sure what other way I would've used that money (well, if I were a GM).

[ ]

In reply to by Ahone Ahtwo Ahthree

IF Harden is healthy by the end of the year and his agent is worth anything, he'll sell himself to the highest bidder. Not like he can really count on a bunch of mult-year deals for the rest of his career. He's still young enough that people will bank somewhat on his potential as well as past performance.

[ ]

In reply to by Rob G.

He's probably going to find some good offers if he is healthy, too. Pretty thin market on quality FA's: Beckett with a club option, Webb with a club option, Cliff Lee with a club option, Hudson with a mutual option, John Lackey, Brett Myers, and Justin Duchscerer. Then you get to the Bedard's and Brad Penny's of the world. Going to be thin on front line guys next year.

[ ]

In reply to by Ahone Ahtwo Ahthree

Long term I am sure the Cubs' intention is to develop their core. They just haven't done a good job of that in recent times, maybe with Vitters and Co. coming up (if they aren't traded) that will change. Next season the backloads really start to hit. So this year's economic conditions at Wrigley Field will dictate where they go with a lot of players. I am certain the recession is going to hit MLB, and I don't think anyone is going to be shielded from it. Then there's new ownership, which at this point is yet another variable.

I do think Hendry deserves some credit for stockpiling starting pitchers; Z, Dempster, Lilly, Harden, Heilman, Gaudin, Marshall, and Samarddzjia. That's 8 legit starting pitchers, and I can remember Cubs' teams in the not-too-distant past that were scraping their 5th (and sometimes 4th) starters togerther from a bunch of suspects and retreads in the last week of ST. In those years, we would have been putting our hopes on a guy like Atkins to fill out the ML rotation, while this year he can take his time to shop for a nice apartment in Des Moines.

[ ]

In reply to by OakLawnGuy

In years past, if a Harden had gone down with an injury, we would have been left with the Derek Botelho's of the world as our only recourse. Now, we do have pitchers like Gaudin who have been successful starters in the past. And while Heilman and Samardzjia may not have the same credentials, they have been successful ML pitchers who have shown the capacity to be successful starters. Would another solid starter be an asset? Of course. Would Peavy be a great addition to this team? I would love to see him acquired. But for once, even if we simply stand pat, we are in a position to succeed nicely with what we have on hand.

Recent comments

  • crunch (view)

    now that the bellinger contract is done and we're waiting on the dude to show up in games...

    it can be argued that bellinger at 30m a year for 1-2 seasons (or 80m over 3 years) isn't a good value.  it's probably not a good deal.  free agent signings at this level of pay have an extremely high ceiling to realize a return on investment based on numbers and stats, alone.

    what it does give, is a specific need for weaknesses of this specific club.  he provides coverage for 2 of the 3 main position weaknesses.

    every slot on the team is pretty much solidified except CF, 1st, and 3rd.  bellinger covers CF and 1st adequately and i doubt many people think he couldn't cover either over the next 3 seasons.

    he also brings that lefty bat with pop.  that's also a cubs weakness addressed with bellinger.

    the cubs have PCA and busch/mervis at CF and 1st respectively.  the team no longer needs both to rise to the occasion.

    plus there's the whole DH thing.

    this is a gamble, but it's not a thoughtless gamble throwing money at a bat for the sake of having a bat.  he's capable of filling numerous roles the team could use for a short period of time in the prime of his career...even if it could end up he's overpaid for what we get from him.
     

  • crunch (view)

    as far as i can tell this isn't injury/rest related, and they've been throwing for weeks.

    we're at the point in spring games where throwing 20-40 pitches for multi-inning guys is the norm, and that's not much different than airing out a few dozen on the mound in a non-game training situation.

    i wonder if these specific guys are getting additional instruction without working things out vs live batters and they don't want to do that and tax the arms doing both at once.  no idea...not heard anything about these guys or what they're doing in ARZ recently.

  • Arizona Phil (view)

    Eight days into the Cactus League schedule, six Cubs pitchers who are officially at MLB Spring Training have yet to throw in a Cactus League game: 

    Yency Almonte 
    Michael Arias 
    Shota Imanaga 
    Ethan Roberts (NRI - TJS rehab)
    Jameson Taillon 
    Keegan Thompson 

    Meanwhile, 13 pitchers assigned to Cubs Minor League Camp have pitched in MLB Cactus League games, including Blake Weiman twice and Hunter Bigge three times!  
     

  • crunch (view)

    player of the game: the sun

  • Arizona Phil (view)

    Here are the pitcher reports from Friday's White Sox - Cubs game at Sloan Park: 

    JUSTIN STEELE
    FB: 90-92 
    CT: 88-89  
    SL: 81-84 
    CH: 78-81  
    CV: 75-76 
    COMMENT: Threw two no run / no hit innings to start the game (a L-1 comeback that almost took Steele's head off on the first pitch of the game, then a BB on a 3-2 pitch, a 5-4 FC that should have been an inning-ending DP but wasn't as the result of a Matt Shaw grip / bobble at 3B -- lucky to get one out on the play, and an F-9 to end the inning)... then a K-looking, an F-9, and a 6-3 GO in an easy 1-2-3 10-pitch second inning... allowed two runs on two hits in the third inning (a three-pitch K-swinging on a SL, then an infield topper that Steele couldn't pick up and was scored a hit but should have been an E-1 -- and should have been the second out but wasn't, then a hard-hit double, an F-8 SF to plate the first run and advance the other runner from second to third, then a WP on a bouncing 55-foot SL that scored the second run, and finally an F-7 FO to end the inning and the outing)... Steele threw 47 pitches over the course of his three innings of work (32 strikes - four swing & miss, two on SL and two on CT - plus an incredible 11 foul balls!)... threw a lot more different types of pitches than his usual FB / SL combo... a very nice "clean" outing, except for the E-1 topper that was inexplicably scored as a hit...    

    JAVIER ASSAD
    FB: 91-94 
    CT: 87-89 
    CH: 86
    SL: 79-80
    CV: 74-76
    COMMENT: Threw two innings (37 pitches - 22 strikes - three swing & miss - three foul balls)... allowed a broken bat infield single to lead-off hitter in the top of the 4th, then a P-3 DP (fantastic over the shoulder catch by Busch while running out into RF foul territory followed by a perfect throw back to 1st base to double the runner off base), and a 3-U GO (our man Busch again!)... second inning began with an HBP (PCA was hit by a pitch in the previous half-inning), then PCA took a bad route (might have briefly lost the ball in the sun) chasing a fly ball in CF that fell for a double on the warning track, putting runners at 2nd & 3rd... then a lazy routine fly ball was lost in the sun by PCA in CF for a gift-double, then after an RBI 6-3 GO for the first out of the inning (should have been the third out!), PCA lost still ANOTHER FLY BALL IN THE SUN in short right-center to further extend the inning, then a walk on a 3-2 pitch, an F-7 FO for what was essentially the fifth out of the inning, then a hard-hit RBI single through the box and into CF (PCA missed the cut-off man with the throw home), and finally a 1-3 come-backer on Assad's 26th pitch of the inning for what should have been the sixth out of the inning... so while he technically threw just two innings and allowed four "earned" runs on five "hits" (including three  "doubles"), Assad got what were essentially nine outs, and should have allowed no runs on two hits (both singles -- one of which was a broken bat infield hit), one walk, and one HBP...        

    JULIAN MERRYWEATHER
    FB: 96-98
    SL: 84-87
    CH: 79
    COMMENT: 1-2-3 inning (K-swinging on a 1-2 SL, F-7, F-8)... 16 pitches (12 strikes - three swinging, two on FB and one on SL - five foul balls)... Matt Mervis lost a pop fly foul ball in the sun prior to the K-swinging...     

    JOSE CUAS
    FB: 91-94
    SL: 81-84 
    COMMENT: Inning started with a gift-triple (Cole Roederer lost can o' corn fly ball in the sun before it bounced off warning track in the RF corner)... Cuas then induced a P-3 for the first out and got a K-swinging for the second out, before hitting a batter with a 2-2 SL to put runners at the corners... then he a got 5-3 GO to end the inning... a cool head 22-pitch "no sweat" masterful extrication act to strand the runner at 3rd after the lead-off "sun triple"... two swing & miss -- one on FB and one on SL -- and five foul balls among his 14 strikes (Cuas gets a LOT of foul balls on "emergency hacks" when he pitches)... 

    COLTEN BREWER
    FB: 93-95
    CH: 89 
    SL: 84-85 
    CV: 79 
    COMMENT: Threw a shutout 8th inning... 10 pitches (seven strikes - one swing & miss on FB)... surrendered two soft-contact singles sandwiched around an F-8, and induced an inning-ending 6-4-3 DP... 

    RILEY THOMPSON
    FB: 95-96
    CH: 89 
    SL: 83-85 
    COMMENT: Tossed a 1-2-3 (3-1 GO, K-swinging on three pitches, F-8) 12-pitch 9th (10 strikes - one swing & miss on SL - four foul balls)... good FB velo in combo with the slider, and he threw strikes... eight of his twelve pitches were SL (he loves those sliders!)... 

  • crunch (view)

    not yet...dunno what his plan is with the team.

    he's not getting any younger.  dude turns 29 in a bit over a week.  they still want him on the roster and 40-man for some reason.

    i like what he throws, but at some point you have to show what's coming out of your arm is MLB-quality.

  • Dolorous Jon Lester (view)

    Has Keegan pitched yet? If not I wonder if they’re even entertaining him as a SP as an option. Genuinely no idea on either of those thoughts

  • crunch (view)

    so...unless keegan thompson comes running into the ring to hit jordan wicks with a steel chair, it's looking like wicks vs himself.

    or they could sign jordan montgomery or something like that.

  • Dolorous Jon Lester (view)

    Wesneski was also pretty unimpressive

  • crunch (view)

    it's only a couple outings, but assad and smyly are firmly removing themselves from the 5-slot battle rather quickly.