Cubs MLB Roster

Cubs Organizational Depth Chart
40-Man Roster Info

59 players are at MLB Spring Training 

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

Last updated 2-6-2024
 
* bats or throws left
# bats both

PITCHERS: 22
Yency Almonte
Adbert Alzolay 
Michael Arias
Javier Assad
Ben Brown
Jose Cuas
Kyle Hendricks
Porter Hodge
* Bailey Horn
* 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: 4  
Jorge Alfaro 
Pablo Aliendo
Joe Hudson 
* Bryce Windham

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

NRI INFIELDERS: 3 
David Bote 
Matt Shaw 
Chase Strumpf 

OUTFIELDERS: 7
Kevin Alcantara
Alexander Canario
* Pete Crow-Armstrong
Brennen Davis
# Ian Happ
Seiya Suzuki
* Mike Tauchman 

NRI OUTFIELDERS: 1 
* Owen Caissie  
 



Minor League Rosters
Rule 5 Draft 
Minor League Free-Agents

Cubs vs. Reds: Series Thread (Games 106-109)

The Cubs ended an eight-game winning streak on Sunday, settling at four games back in the division. The Reds come to Chicago for a four-game series, with both teams likely trying to fill out their rosters before the impending trade deadline. See below for daily matchups.


Game 106, Monday, July 31, 7:05 pm central
CIN: LHP Andrew Abbott (6-2, 1.90 ERA)
CHC: RHP Marcus Stroman (10-7, 3.51 ERA)


Game 107, Tuesday, August 1, 7:05 pm central
CIN: RHP Ben Lively (4-6, 3.76 ERA)
CHC: LHP Justin Steele (11-3, 2.87 ERA)


Game 108, Wednesday, August 2, 7:05 pm central
CIN: LHP Brandon Williamson (3-2, 4.48 ERA)
CHC: LHP Drew Smyly (8-7, 4.50 ERA)


Game 109, Thursday,  August 3, 7:05 pm central
CIN: RHP Luke Weaver (2-3, 6.80 ERA)
CHC: RHP Jameson Taillon (5-6, 5.46 ERA)

Comments

It will be interesting to see if Marcus Stroman actually starts tonight, or if the Cubs will recall Caleb Kilian (who last pitched last Wednesday at Iowa) from AAA and push Stroman to Tuesday and Steele to Wednesday and pitch Taillon on Thursday (skipping Wesneski / Smyly). 

If that were to happen, it would indicate the Cubs are  actively shopping Stroman and don't want him to possibly incur an injury prior to tomorrow's Trade Deadline. 

If Stroman does pitch tonight, it likely means the Cubs are not going to trade him, and will instead pursue a contract extension (since either a trade or a contract extension are really the only two logical choices with respect to Stroman).  

And if the Cubs are open to trading Stroman, acquiring a 1B/DH type bat for him and (let's say) Trey Mancini might be a possibility, where the Cubs take back a big contract to offset Stroman's and Mancini's combined AAV (like maybe Josh Bell from Cleveland or Jose Abreu from Houston), with no prospects involved on either side.  

Wesneski would then replace Stroman in the rotation, with either Javier Assad or a pitcher called up from Iowa (like Kilian, Ben Brown, Chris Clarke, or Riley Thompson) to piggy-back with Smyly, or Smyly could just go back into the rotation without a piggy-back. 

[ ]

In reply to by Arizona Phil

Not including pitchers on the MLB 26-man roster and the 2023 draft picks (who can't be traded until after the conclusion of the World Series), Ben Brown, Cade Horton, Jordan Wicks, Jackson Ferris, and Michael Arias are the Cubs Top 5 pitching prospects, with DJ Herz, Kohl Franklin, Porter Hodge, Luke Little, and Caleb Kilian the next five, so Herz was at the top of the second tier of Cubs pitching prospects (essentially in the #11-20 range). 

[ ]

In reply to by Arizona Phil

Herz was going to need a 40man spot yo avoid Rule5. Made too but I don't think a team would take him in Rule5.

Cubs actually have some LHSP prospects now. Herz was certainly one of them, but it isn't a total collapse in position depth with his loss. Wicks will get a 40man spot hopefully sooner rather than later. Ferris, Gray and Santy are next.

Made's spot in SB will be taken pretty quickly by Shaw and/or Rivera. 

Can't really complain about the deal at all.

Cubs got cash from Nats as well.

I'm a little surprised no other team made a better offer than Herz and Made for Candy. And I really like Herz and Made.

[ ]

In reply to by Cubster

Candelario must be added to the MLB 40-man roster immediately (there was one slot open after Edwin Rios was outrighted to Iowa yesterday), but a 26-man roster move will need to be made when Candelario physically reports to Cubs, but the move cannot be made during a game (so no move likely to be made tonight).  

i can't believe the cubs are going for it.  yeah, the odds aren't in their favor, but we get to watch a team try to make it happen rather than sitting through 2 months of "who cares" baseball.  i've missed this kind of "cubs way."

jose cuas (KC) for nelson velazquez...interesting arm, but not the 2023 arm i was looking.  high upside, but he's not locked down numbers to match his skill set.

announced on TV, Cubs get reliever Jose Cuas from Kc for Nelson Velasquez. Sad to see NV go but they do have OF depth. 

[ ]

In reply to by crunch

Absolutely… #6 in team history in gm @ P.   Higher ERA+ for CHC than Lee Smith. 
 

On a related note… you can win lots of bar bets on the fact that James Russell is in the top 10 all-time for games @ P.  68-70 games per year will jack that number up pretty fast. Moment of silence for the LOOGY.  

Random thought sharing with the ether...  so much of drafting / scouting / prospecting leading to on-field production has a large element of Timing & Talent aligning in the right way.   Seeing a rumor that CHC may pursue Brooks Raley & obviously bringing back 2016 team MVP Candelario.  Also noting some other team "projects" from the past that are making contributions (some modest) elsewhere... Kendall Graveman, Billy McKinney, Zach McKinstry, and others.

 

 

a.sampson + manny rodriguez + international pool money to TB for josh roberson...insignificant minor league trade fodder.  no idea why they even made the trade, honestly...

Although they were both on the Cubs minor league Domestic Reserve List, Adrian Sampson and Manuel Rodriguez are outrighted players so they could not be traded after the MLB Trade Deadline. 

Also, both will be minor league free agents post-2023. 

And there is a roster crunch right now at AAA Iowa. 

In addition, Sampson is making $1.9M on a major league contract, so the Cubs are saving about $600K in both actual money - AND - 2023 MLB AAV on an outrighted player who probably wasn't going to see Wrigley Field again before becoming an Article XX-D minor league FA after the conclusion of the 2023 MLB regular season. 

As far as the international bonus "money" is concerned, the Cubs are - NOT - sending actual bonus money to the Rays. Rather, the Rays are getting ISBP space (meaning it gives the Rays the opportunity to spend more bonus money on international players if they wish to so).   

And Josh Roberson will be a Rule 9 6YFA post-2023 World Series, so he is probably just minor league bullpen "filler" (at this point), although the Cubs might offer him a 2024 minor league successor contract (and possibly an NRI to MLB Spring Training) if he makes a good impression over the next couple of months.  

So this was a good trade for the Cubs, and the Rays get a couple of pitchers (one SP and one RP) with MLB experience who might possibly help them down the stretch, plus some additional ISBP space.   

[ ]

In reply to by Arizona Phil

Fangraphs likes Roberson’s stuff and hates his control.

“ Roberson has an explosive upper-90s fastball and a hard slider with variable shape and quality, at times breaking straight down and at times looking more like a cutter. It’s even possible there are two distinct breaking balls here, but Roberson is so wild that this write-up assumes it is just one breaking ball that he releases inconsistently. It’s slam dunk big league stuff undercut by 20-grade command, and Roberson has walked nearly a batter per inning throughout his career. At this age, things aren’t expected to suddenly “click” from a control standpoint, but Roberson’s stuff is still that of a lightning-in-a-bottle of up/down type.”

[ ]

In reply to by Arizona Phil

AZ Phil, a few questions:

1) Is this ISBP space for this current class or the next class? I forget how that works with mid season trades.

2) That TB trade seems like Jed had to offer all those pieces to make TB do it. The ISBP space seemed like the kicker to finish. But all of this was due to the Iowa roster crunch, correct?

3) The Cubs have an open 40man spot now. Do you think they add a impending Rule5 protectee like L. Little? I'd love for Perlaza to be added but Little makes more sense for their current direction.

4) Since most of the guys in Iowa haven't been outrighted in their careers, they can be traded in Aug/Sept, correct? If so, which guys do you think that's likely for? I'm assuming guys who've already signed successor deals. So, Perlaza for instance.

Sorry for the multiple questions. Just curious.

Thanks

[ ]

In reply to by Childersb3

Childersb3: 

1. ISBP space can only be traded during that year's  International Signing Period (ISP), so the International Signing Bonus Pool (ISBP) space sent to the Rays is from this year's ISP.

Since it's pretty late in the ISP and most all of the best prospects signed back in January, the Rays must have somebody in particular they want to sign who just turned 16 (and thus just became eligible to sign) or just became eligible in some other way.   

BTW, the Cubs' loss of $500K in ISBP space for signing Qualified Player Dansby Swanson last off-season will be subtracted in the 2024 ISP (it was not subtracted this year).  

2. Trading Adrian Sampson and Manuel Rodriguez was partly because of the Iowa roster crunch, but the Cubs also saved approximately a combined $850K in 2023 MLB AAV (and actual salary, too) by trading Sampson and M. Rodriguez, because as outrighted players (that is, a player outrighted from an MLB Reserve List after signing a major league contract for that season) continues to count against the club's MLB AAV even after the player has been outrighted to the minors. 

The Cubs are on the hook for what remains of Candelario's 2023  salary (about $1.7M) plus any part of the $1M performance bonus ($200K each for 200, 300, 400, 500, and 600 PA) Candelario might reach while with the Cubs. Since Candelario reached the first three of his $200K performance bonus marks ($600K total) while he was with the Nationals, the Nats sent the Cubs $600K as part of he trade, with the Cubs responsible for the remaining $400K if Candelario reaches 500 PA ($200K) and 600 PA ($200K). BTW, Candelario doesn't actually receive the performance bonus until after the conclusion of the season, and then it is paid in a lump sum (and performance bonuses that are paid out - DO - count against a club's MLB AAV from that season, so it can affect a possible CBT hit for that season).     

As far as trading 2023 ISBP to the Rays, it probably was because the Cubs don't plan on signing any more international players for more than the $10,000 limit (a bonus $10,000 or less doesn't count against a club's ISBP). 

So the Cubs can continue to sign international players up until the 2023 mid-December ISP deadline, but no bonus can exceed $10,000.     

3. The MLB 40-man roster slot being open only happened as a by-product of Trey Mancini being Designated for Assignment to open up a slot on the MLB 26-man roster for Jeimer Candelario, so there is no reason to add anybody to the 40 right now.

In fact, now might be a good time to make a waiver claim, with a number of clubs having to DFA players to make room for MLB players acquired in trades.   

Speaking of which, although trading players on the MLB 40-man roster and MLB 60-day IL and outrighted players on a minor league reserve list (like Bote, Rios, M. Rodriguez, and Sampson) is prohibited after the MLB Trade Deadline has passed, players on an MLB 40-man roster can be placed on Outright Assignment Waivers throughout the balance of the season, and while the $50,000 waiver fee isn't a lot of money, the club also would get out from under the player's contract if the player is claimed, with the claiming club assuming 100% of the balance of the player's remaining salary (which depending on the player, could be a substantial savings).

Keep in mind that a player does NOT have to be outrighted after Outright Assignment Waivers are secured, so (for example) the White Sox could place Tim Anderson on Outright Assignment waivers during the August Waiver Period, and if he isn't claimed they just keep him on their MLB 40-man roster, but if he is claimed by another club, the claiming club would pay the Sox the $50,000 fee - AND - assume Anderson's contract (and the the balance of his salary). 

The Cubs will probably also do this with Trey Mancini prior to releasing him, on the off chance (albeit VERY unlikely) that another club might want to claim his contract. 

BTW, if a player has a "no trade" right, he would have to waive the "no trade" prior to being placed on Outright Assignment Waivers.  

4. Not being allowed to trade an outrighted player after the MLB Trade Deadline has passed doesn't include all minor league players who have been outrighted previously in their career. Rather, it is specific to any player who was outrighted to the minors after signing a major league contract for THAT SEASON. So that means only Bote, Rios, M. Rodriguez, and Sampson can't be traded after the MLB Trade Deadline has passed.

BTW, Rowan Wick was in that same group, too, prior to being released, but after he was released and then signed a minor league contract with the Braves, he is no longer considered to be a 2023 "outrighted player," so the Braves could trade him if they so choose. 

Also, although minor league players (not including 2023 outrighted players and players selected in the 2023 First-Year Player Draft) can be traded after the MLB Trade Deadline has passed, there is a deadline for trading minor league players (12 PM on Sunday one week prior to the conclusion of the MLB regular season, extending through the conclusion of the MLB regular season).  

[ ]

In reply to by Arizona Phil

Thanks Phil. Sorry for the late response. I was at the South Bend game tonight. Going to Wrigley tomorrow night. It's great having family in Northern Indiana!!

So, if I'm reading your responses above correctly, Perlaza, Vazquez, Hill, Slaughter and Strumpf could be traded in Aug/Sept ?

And, even though I understand your thoughts on adding a waiver claim for the 40th spot, I just hate not putting our homegrown talent that's going to be placed on the 40man in two months anyway on the 40man now. I understand the need to think long term and conserve option years, but I choose to dislike this process regardless of logic. I think you try arms that you produced in house. Don't wait. Give them a chance. L. Little !! Won't happen, I know.

[ ]

In reply to by Childersb3

Childersb3: 

Perlaza, Vazquez, Hill, Strumpf, and Slaughter - CAN - be traded up until the Sunday prior to the last week of the MLB regular season. (There is a one week moratorium on ALL trades -- including the trading of minor leaguers -- during the last week of the MLB regular season). 

The only Cubs minor leaguers who cannot be traded are players who were outrighted off the MLB 40-man roster after signing a 2023 major league contract (David Bote, Chris Clarke, and Edwin Rios), and the twenty 2023 Cubs draft picks (Shaw, Wiggins, Rivera, et al). These players also cannot be a "Player to Be Named Later" in a trade. 

BTW, I forgot to include Chris Clarke among the 2023  Cubs outrighted players. He was automatically outrighted when he was re-claimed by the Cubs at the end of Spring Training. (Clarke was selected by Seattle in the Major League Phase of the 2022 Rule 5 Draft, but he did not make the Mariners' Opening Day 26-man roster).    

With the exception of the 2023 draft picks (who cannot be traded until after the conclusion of the World Series), all other players (MLB and minor league) can be traded beginning on the day after the conclusion of the MLB regular. 

[ ]

In reply to by Finwe Noldaran

F NOLDARAN: 

It's unlikely that any of the Cubs minor leaguers will get traded prior to the conclusion of the MLB regular season, but any one of the minor leaguers eligible to be a Rule 9 minor league 6YFA post-2023 who have "upside" AND an MLB ceiling (OF Yonathan Perlaza, SS Luis Vazquez, RHRP Eduarniel Nunez, RHRP Danis Correa, RHRP Yovanny Cruz, LHRP Brailyn Marquez, and/or LHRP Brendon Little) could be traded - IF - the Cubs do not select the player to their MLB 40-man roster or sign the player to a 2024 minor league successor contract prior to 5 PM (Eastern) on the 5th day after the final game of the World Series.

But even if a minor leaguer eligible to be declared a Rule 9 minor league 6YFA after the World Series signs a successor contract, he would still be eligible for selection in the Rule 5 Draft.  

So signing Perlaza, L. Vazquez, E. Nunez, Correa, Y. Cruz, Marquez, and/or B. Little to a 2024 successor contract would not guarantee that the player wouldn't get selected in the Rule 5 Draft. In fact, that's exactly how it was that the Cubs selected Hector Rondon in the Rule 5 Draft post-2012. (Rondon signed a successor contract with Cleveland prior to being declared a minor league 6YFA, but then the Cubs took him in the Rule 5 Draft).   

Cubs minor leaguers who are not eligible to be a minor league 6YFA post-2023 but who are eligible for selection in the December 2023 Rule 5 Draft (most notably LHRP Bailey Horn, LHRP Luke Little, C Pablo Aliendo, RHSP Kohl Franklin, RHRP Porter Hodge, RHP-SWING Riley Thompson, RHP-SWING  Chris Clarke, INF Chase Strumpf, INF Jake Slaughter, OF Cole Roederer, RHRP Cam Sanders, and/or OF Darius Hill -- probably in that order, plus any of the minor league 6YFA eligibles like Perlaza, L. Vazquez, Correa, E. Nunez, Y. Cruz, Marquez, and/or B. Little who might sign a 2024 successor contract) could be traded prior to the filing of off-season minor league reserve lists in November, - IF - the Cubs can't find space on the 40 for the player - AND - the Cubs think they might lose the player in the Rule 5 Draft - AND - the Cubs believe that they likely won't get the player back if he is selected - AND  - the Cubs consider the player to be too valuable to lose for the $100,000 Rule 5 Draft price, EVEN WITH the real possibility that they could eventually re-claim the player if he is selected and then doesn't make the claiming club's Opening Day MLB 26-man roster. 

A special note with respect to RHSP Michael Arias (one of the Cubs Top 5 pitching prospects), who is in a special class of minor league player because he is a "second contract player"... Because he was signed as a second-contract player (previously released by Toronto), he could (by rule) be a minor league FA post-2023 - IF - he was not signed beyond the 2023 season when the Cubs signed him in 2021. However, most young second contract players (M. Arias was only 19 when he was signed by the Cubs) sign a multi-year minor league contract that takes the player through what would have been the player's seventh minor league season if he hadn't been released (which for M. Arias would be through the 2025 season)... BUT, he could be signed only through the 2024 season, or he might only be signed through the 2023 season -- TBD...). 

BTW, M. Arias (like Kevin Alcantara last year) would get four minor league options if he were to be added to the 40 post-2023, so there would be no need to rush him, but he also would take up a 40-man roster slot for what could be a number of years before he is MLB ready (he just recently got promoted to Hi-A South Bend).     

So I can't see Horn or L. Little not being added to the 40 (possibly even prior to the conclusion of the MLB regular season), with Aliendo (the Cubs top  all-around catching prospect behind Miguel; Amaya) and M. Arias (especially if he isn't signed beyond 2023, but even if he is signed through 2024 or 2025) are  also likely to be added to the 40 after the World Series, but then also Perlaza (almost for sure -- if he isn't traded!!!) and maybe L. Vazquez (if he isn't traded) and one or more of the three high FB velo RHRP (Correa, E. Nunez, and Y. Cruz) could get added to the 40 as well. 

The other nine 2023 Rule 5 Draft-eligibles I listed (K. Franklin, Hodge, R. Thompson, Clarke, Strumpf, Slaughter, Roederer, C. Sanders, and D. Hill) are presently "on the bubble," just like DJ Herz and Kevin Made were prior to being traded for Candelario, but I would say right now the Cubs would actually be more-likely to roster Perlaza (in particular), L. Vazquez, and Correa, E. Nunez, and/or Y. Cruz, than K. Franklin, Hodge, R. Thompson, Clarke, Strumpf, Slaughter, Roederer, C. Sanders, or D. Hill.  

Headed by Perlaza, this is the best group of minor league 6YFA eligibles the Cubs have had in a long time (maybe the best-ever). 

[ ]

In reply to by Arizona Phil

I suspect one of the reasons the Cubs did not make more trades at the deadline than they did make (like maybe for one or two established high-leverage relievers such as Paul Sewald, David Bednar, Kyle Finnegan, Kendall Graveman, and/or Andrew Chafin) is that clubs were asking for Daniel Palencia, Bailey Horn, Luke Little, and/or Michael Arias in return, and the Cubs just wouldn't trade them.  

[ ]

In reply to by Arizona Phil

How much longer do you think Jensen sticks on the 40? 
 

I know he’ll be claimed once he’s waived; but I’d rather have that 40 spot go to somebody who the major league team might use this season on the DSM shuttle. 
 

A player like Horn that you are going to roster at the end of the season anyway. Or even a fringe 40 R5 type like Clarke or R.Thomp… help team now & know that you’ll likely lose them when drooped of 40 in off season vs. don’t use them & maybe lose to R5. I guess I’m feeling confident enough in the minor league P pipeline to side with “use now”. 

[ ]

In reply to by Arizona Phil

The current MLB Waiver Period is the shortest one of the year, beginning immediately when the Trade Deadline passed, and extending through August 31st (the deadline for a player to be post-season eligible). 

So if an MLB player (including players on Optional Assignment to the minors, but not including players on an IL) is placed onto Outright Assignment Waivers during the current waiver period, the waivers are irrevocable, but the player does NOT have to be outrighted to the minors if he is not claimed.

The player can be placed onto Outright Assignment Waivers by the same club only once in the waiver period, so some strategy is necessary.  

This allows any MLB club to place a player on waivers with the hope that another club might claim the player for the $50,000 waiver fee, plus assuming the contract and 100% of what is left of the player's salary. 

This can be a very useful ploy for a club out of contention that wants to get something ($50,000 waiver fee, but also payroll relief) for a player on an expiring contract, or for a player signed to a multi-year onerous / albatross type contract. 

It is also an easy way for a contender to pick up one or more useful MLB players after the Trade Deadline, albeit at the cost of $50,000 PLUS assuming the player's contract (which might be costly, but necessary).

A players on the IL cannot be placed onto Outright Assignment Waivers until the player is eligible to be reinstated AND healthy enough to play. 

A player with a "no trade" right must waive the right PRIOR TO being placed onto Outright Assignment Waivers, and if he does waive the "no trade" he cannot change his mind if he is claimed by a club he doesn't like.  

Waiver claim priority is based on the aggregate MLB standings as of 9 AM on the day the player clears waivers (with no distinction made between the two leagues).  

Players on non-contenders who might be placed on waivers (and potentially could get claimed) this month are: 

METS: 
LHSP Jose Quintana ($2/$26M thru 2024) 
OF Starling Marte (4/$78M thru 2025) 
RHSP Carlos Carrasco (FA in 2024 - is making $14M in 2023) 
C Omar Narvaez (2/$15M thru 2024)
RHRP Adam Ottavino (2/$14.5M - includes a $6.75M player option in 2024)

WHITE SOX: 
OF Andrew Benintendi (5/$75M thru 2027)
Tim Anderson (making $12.5M in 2023 - $14M club option for 2024)
LHRP Aaron Bummer (5/$16M - under control via club options thru 2025-26)
RHSP Mike Clevenger ($8M in 2023 - mutual option for 2024)
C Yasmani Grandal (FA post-2023 - making $18.25M in 2023)  

CARDINALS: 
LHSP Steven Matz (4/$44M thru 2026) 

PIRATES: 
OF Andrew McCutchen (FA post-2023 - $5M in 2023)

A's: 
RHRP Trevor May (FA post-2023 - $6M in 2023)
|INF-OF Tony Kemp (signed thru 2023 - $3.725M in 2023) 
INF Aldemys Diaz (signed thru 2024 - $7.25M AAV - $8M in 2024)

ROYALS: 
INF Matt Duffy (FA post-2023 - $1.5M in 2023)
RHSP Jordan Lyles (signed thru 2024 @ $8.5M per season 2/$17M AAV)

ROCKIES: 
RHRP Daniel Bard (signed 2024 - 2/$19M AAV)
OF Jurickson Profar (FA post-2023 - $7.75M in 2023)
LHRP Brent Suter (FA post-2023 - $3M in 2023) 

TIGERS: 
LHRP Chasen Shreve (FA post-2023 - making $1.25M in 2023)

NATIONALS:
LHSP Patrick Corbin (6/$140M AAV thru 2024 - will make $35M in 2024) 
RHSP Trevor Williams (2/$13M AAV- signed thru 2024) 
RHRP Carl Edwards Jr (FA post-2023 - $2.25M in 2023)

looks like the cubs won't do a pen upgrade...not feeling great about that, but overall walking away with one of the best available bats and not giving up big pieces for it rocks.

Seems like this was just a very lackluster deadline, not sure there was much to be had out there even if we were sellers.......

Cuas was a pointless trade, other than they still have control for some more years, but Velzaquez still had potentional if nothing else good enough to be a 4th OF or AAAA tweener.  You can’t tell me the Cubs didn’t have somebody as good as Cuas in the minors.  Hell use Sampson.  Plus Sampson can start or long relief, but let’s trade him for a bag of balls.

Candelario is nice to have back, but at the cost of Made, who was buried so far down the SS depth, so meh.  However Herz.  Still very young, one if the few LHP in the system with some upside.

Now had we kept Jeimer in the first place…instead trade him and Isaac Peredes (who would be leading the Cubs in HR right now) for Justin Wilson and Alex Avilia.  Nice Theo.

Do you really think either trade is going to make us a contender??? No. Plus they just ate anything they could have got for Stroman and get a 2nd rd QO pick for Bellinger for some shitty pipe dreams.  There’s always next year.

[ ]

In reply to by cubbies.4ever

cubbies.4ever you made my comment for me, standing pat to save face will only save face in the short-term; now we have what we had when we weren't serious contenders, but are just incrementally improved? Not really seeing it getting much better, and any pieces we could leverage for better prospects are going to be leaving us with only a bag of magic beans to show for it at the end of the year. Change happens when change happens, and change hasn't happened yet; doing things the same and expecting change is literally the definition of insanity............

[ ]

In reply to by Finwe Noldaran

The flip side I see of this is that our best trade pieces are both rentals. Look at what we had to give up for Candelario, who without Bellinger there was probably the best rental bat out there. Sure, Bellinger probably commands a bit more, but do we really need another Made or Herz, or slightly above that in the system? We’re already loaded with the depth type pieces that are borderline 40 man guys and guys we might lose in rule 5.

I don’t really get the Cuas, trade, I will admit.

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

I feel like the return may have been similar to the David Robertson return, which may or may not be better than a comp pick? (the Verlander return was nice, but OF's) Getting value in deciding to be sellers, if there's good value out there, makes sense; but if there's no real value, then selling isn't necessarily the best option. I feel like selling was the best long-term option though.

Looking at the long-term without selling, I don't see how sticking together and trying to win until the poker cards turn on us and the run stops, is actually helping us long-term; the only position players who will potentially be on this team when we have a window for contention would be Swanson, Morel, and Amaya. By 2025 - 2026, our rosters position players would likely be 13 of:

1B Mervis/McGeary 

2B Vazquez/Shaw/Rivera/Triantos

SS Swanson 

3B Murray Jr./Rivera/Rojas

OF PCA, Cassie, Alcantara, Canario, Roederer 

C Amaya/Aliendo/Ballesteros 

DH Morel/Perlaza

Unless we start signing players to long-term contracts, this will be what we have; which I'm all for, providing they God-willing break out and perform. But that would require a change in development strategy (i.e. give the newly called up prospects significant playing time), which may require a change in leadership, which may bring about a change in approach to free agency; so I digress........

[ ]

In reply to by Finwe Noldaran

Pure free agents, not including trades, there were 10 guys who made some level of impact on that team. Lester, Zobrist, Lackey, Hammel, Ross, Coghlan, Cahill, Richard, Kawasaki, and Heyward. There were trades for other players who were at least somewhat if not entirely established as major leaguers. Those 10 were Arrieta, Fowler, Strop, Chapman, Montero, Wood, Montgomery, Smith, Warren, and La Stella.

Plenty of that group wasn’t on the playoff roster, but they all had some level of contributions.

The other groups are the prospects originally drafted and or signed by the team, guys traded for as minor leaguers, and a rule 5 pick.

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

That's what I remember too (although not as specifically as you just listed), but I do remember more of the position players were in house or prospects we traded for, and more of the pitchers were ones we signed or traded for who were established; not sure if this regime is doing a mix, or focusing more on homegrown pitching than the previous regime? 

madrigal with a leaping catch on a laser line drive...jed (in the booth) immediately says "Tall enough."  ha.

well, candelario's error at 1st makes a little more sense.  he doesn't even have a 1st base mitt...he had to borrow one from m.amaya.  he last played 1st in 2020.

Can’t remember the Cubs hitting at least 4 homers in a game where all of them had ducks on the pond.  I chalk it up to platooning Tauchman in RF with Seiya - and nothing at all to do with wind conditions. 

Man, why did Nico have to go ahead and hit a solo shot? It’s ruined the whole symmetry of multiple bombs with men on base. Cubs will just have try again tomorrow. 

wesn pitching a blowout in the 7th.  this stinks of "getting sent back to AAA after the game"...wouldn't complain...rather have him starting than going 1-2 innings every few days.

For your position players of 2025-26 Nico, Suzuki, and Happ will still be there.  Others off the current team that could Madigral, Wisdom, Mastrobouni (all long shots).  Also Brennan Davis could be OF and Christian Hernandez at IF.   We need a lot of help with free agents/trades (please get Ohtani).

Prospects traded for: Addison Russell, CJ Edwards

Unknowns/not established real well/4A players:  Justin Grimm, Tommy LaStella, Mike Montgomery

Anthony Rizzo was still a prospect when traded for.  Had only a few Sep call up games underneath his belt.

Here's the thing you need to also think about.  From that 2016 team how many players remain seven years later?  One, Kyle Hendricks.  How do you expect to constantly win or contend when in 7 years you only have one player left?  Happ, Alzolay, Morel, Amaya, Steele, and Asaad were in the system, but only one MLB player.

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In reply to by cubbies.4ever

True, the cycle is: build, bestroy, build, for us; so not a lot of players will make it through the destroy phase before the next build, particularly if they're worth short-term value that we can turn into future value. If we want sustained build, we need to change our approach to eliminate the destroy phase, which no one seems to be able to embrace............

Speaking of Bote, assuming they don't make a waiver claim, wouldn't he make an ideal 40th man for a late season/post season run.  He has a decent amount of MLB experience which is what you want over a kid in those runs, versatile, and is hitting better than the majority of the Cubs, especially if you take away these past hadful of series with STL, CWS, CIN, WAS which aren't exactly great measure of where you stand in the grand scheme of things.

[ ]

In reply to by cubbies.4ever

cubbies.4ever: The Cubs could very well select David Bote to the 40-man roster (and 26-man roster) sometime before the end of the season. Then they will place him on waivers again after the season (just like they did after last season) and hope that somebody will claim his contract, or if he isn't claimed and gets outrighted, that he will elect free-agency and forfeit what remains of his contract. 

The Cubs had to be careful not to add Bote to the MLB 26-man roster prior to June 27th, because they needed to make sure that he stayed under five years of MLB Service Time by the end of the 2023 season so they can outright him again (if he is added back to the 40 this season). 

If the Cubs had added Bote to their MLB 26-man roster prior to June 27th, and then (let's say) he got injured, the Cubs wouldn't be able to send him back to minors while he was rehabbing (which could be the balance of the MLB regular season) and then they wouldn't be able to outright him after the season. 

As you know, Bote is signed through 2024 with club options (and buy-outs) for 2025 and 2026, with a $3M AAV hit, so the Cubs would REALLY like to get out from under the contract, either by virtue of a trade (I thought he might have been part of the Candelario trade with the Nationals as a "salary offset," but it didn't happen), or another club claiming him off waivers, or by outrighting him and then hoping that he will elect free-agency and forfeit the balance of his contract (OK, not very likely, but I'm sure the Cubs will be willing it give it a try and hope that Bote is so frustrated with his career going nowhere that he gives up his money and "bets on himself" as a free-agent...). 

But to do that, Bote first has to be added back to the Cubs MLB 40-man roster (although not necessarily the 26-man roster, but probably also the 26-man roster). Only then can  he be placed onto Outright Assignment Waivers. 

This all wouldn't matter that much if the Cubs weren't so close to the CBT threshold, but they are close, and if they  are close again next season, they would certainly like to be able to get Bote's $3M AAV off the books for 2024 (either by virtue of a waiver claim by another club, or by him electing free-agency and forfeiting the balance of his contract and salary). 

Speaking of Jeimer Candelario, I was reminded of this Extended Spring Training game back in 2012... 

Javier Baez hit a monster HR over the LF fence and into the cemetery across the street, and Candelario hit an equally long and towering HR over the RF fence and onto the roof of the Angels clubhouse.  

That was probably the best EXST Cubs team of all time, with Baez setting the EXST Cubs HR record and destroying the Angels every time he faced them that year. 

But Candelario was really good, too. 

https://www.thecubreporter.com/cubs-unleash-wood-diablo-park

no moves yet for the cubs.  i was pretty much expecting a wesn demotion with another reliever coming up...go figure.

"well, we got you a new power bat." - jed

"nice.  i'm gonna bat him 8th.  lol." - ross

smyly gets the d.ross special...and earned it.  terrible night (again).  4.2ip, 5r/er

cubs fighting like hell.  i'm here for this.  cubs battle back to a lead.  wow.  hope the pen can hold the next 3 innings.

Reds defense has been Mancini-esque this series. And I’ll take it. 
 

Check that: it’s been way worse than Mancini’s D. 

Good to see Happ, but particularly Seiya, take advantage of the position player pitcher. There are no asterisks next to your home run totals at the end of the year. 

Went to the SB Cubs game tonight. Just some thoughts from a "I wish I knew what I was talking about" baseball guy:

The Mr. Shaw needs to be a 2nd baseman comments are solidly based. He just doesn't have the arm for it. He throws over the top too much. He doesn't have that from the shoulder or below thpqe shoulder zip on the throws. 

Mr. Rivera has a really good arm. His one chance to throw to 1B tonight was impressive. He has the arm you want from the left side of the infield.

Mr. McCullough had a hard time with LH bats tonight. He couldn't get his slider to do anything against the lefties. His FB routinely hit 95, even 96 once throughout his 70 pitches. He showed a change-up one time, but never went back to it. He attached hitters, but he's breaker didn't fool anyone tonight. 

I've seen Mr. Stevens four times in person over the last two years and he always gets an RBI hit. 

All the SB hitters tonight had issues with an 81-82 mph breaker. Umps didn't help them much. T

SB got rung up on a few check swings that looked pretty clean. MiLB two man ump crews have a tough job.

MVP of the night for sure was RHP Yovanny Cruz. Big man. Pretty smooth action. Sat at 98 mph. Hit 99 twice. His off speed looked like a slider/cutter, very tight. They were all backdoor to LH batters, so it may have been a change-up. Couldn't tell. But he was too much for Wis Rattlers. His 99 mph FB had downward plane as well. Fun to watch. 

Mr. Franklin made the defensive play of the night with a diving catch in CF on a sinking line drive. He had it right off the bat. 

Laskey and Scalzo were impressive. Laskey can throw his curve and change-up to RH and LH bats. I think his FB has cutter movement at 91. Curve at 79 and change at 84. He got two LH bats on his change-up. Tough! 

Scalzo must only weight 140 lbs. I'm serious. But he sat 95 and hit 96 twice. Tight curve and I saw a change I believe at 88. His run he gave up shouldn't have happened. Pinango lost a soft line drive that should've been caught. I think he never saw it. 

Rattlers closer was a bit wild with his slider, but he had some serious jump on his 96-97 FB. He got into Stevens and Franklin to end the game. Tanner Shears. 24 yr old from Independent Leagues. Went to UIC for college. 

The division is very winnable--and you might even say the Cubs are the favorite at this point. The Braves will be a great test.

Buckle up, y'all. It's stretch-run baseball!

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In reply to by CTSteve

It’s so much better than meaningless august and September baseball, I know they didn’t make a ton of trades, but at least they didn’t sell. And they got the best rental bat on the market for a decent return as opposed to a huge return.

[ ]

In reply to by Dolorous Jon Lester

the past few years, trade targets that don't come with club control or a crapload of money aren't bringing high value.  the market that used to give up top-5 team prospects is currently the market that's lucky to give up a ranked 10-20 team prospect.

it's causing teams to go for it and not putting talent on the market.  even with a thinned market because of this, the returns are still low.

i didn't expect candle to go so cheaply given he was the obvious #1 available bat...30 doubles, 16 homers, .342 ob%, plays 3rd/1st...and he went for a couple team ranked 10-15 guys who are not performing well in 2023.  WAS fans were not impressed with the return and hope their scouting are seeing something they're not...

Attended ACL game Tuesday night and had a chance to watch and talk to Zyhir Hope in his first pro game. 0-2 with 2 walks but a) showed great eye on some very close takes and b) a beautiful swing albeit with no results. Spoke with him after the game and he was very enthusiastic and well spoken. Mature young man for 18. 

Drew Bowser, also in his first game, had two hits but some swing and miss in big spots. 
 

One additional point…I spoke to one of the organization hitting coaches about Josh Rivera and asked about his aggressive assignment. He said “Really advanced player for a third round draft pick, very impressive”

rizzo (NYY) put on the 7d concussion list for *checks notes* an injury that occurred May 28th when he ran into Tatis Jr.  good job yankees training staff.

seeing mark leiter jr come into the 6th with 0 outs and a man on 2nd is making me wish this team did pick up a high end relief guy.  we got 4 innings and a 2 run cushion for the pen...

It is sure nice to look up and down the Cubs farm system and see prospects everywhere. It wasn’t that long ago that rosters were stuffed with ballast.

Recent comments

  • crunch (view)

    cease has a 8m deal and 2 years of club control.  he wouldn't be cheap.

    dunno if the rumored talent given up is worth it, but if the wsox want a return on cease there's no time like now considering the very low 2024 price tag.

    the cheap price incentive for a full year vs. mid-season addition seems like a wash in potential return.

    wicks could immediately slot in as a starter on most teams.  also, the cubs already have a couple of solid lefty starters slotted in for at least the next 4 years.

  • Childersb3 (view)

    Mully and Haugh Chicago Radio says that folks within Cubs front office now believe a Belli ddeal will get done. Also, White Sox wanted to see Wicks, Mervis and Vazquez today for a possible Cease deal. 

    That can't be real. But, the Sox have been overpricing Cease.

  • Arizona Phil (view)

    Most of you have probably seen the game, but for anyone who might have missed it here are the Cubs pitcher reports from Friday's Cubs - White Sox game at Sloan Park... 

    JORDAN WICKS
    FB: 91-93 
    CT: 88-90 
    SL: 80-81 
    CH: 78-83 
    COMMENT: Threw 1.2 IP (40 pitches - 23 strikes - six swing & miss) and mixed-up his pitches well... FB velo went down a tick in his second inning of work... looked a bit fatigued in second inning... allowed two hits and no walks and struck out one... gave up an oppo-field line drive solo HR to a AA RH hitter on a 92 MPH FB... should have easily finished off second inning but made careless error on weak tap in front of mound on his 24th pitch of the inning with catcher running and then made another error trying to grip the ball to make a throw to 1st (only one error was charged of course)... he just looked gassed as he walked off the field...  

    HUNTER BIGGE
    FB: 95-98 
    CH: 87-88 
    SL: 81 
    COMMENT: Faced one batter (strikeout looking) to finish second inning... 8 pitches (5 strikes - no swing & miss)... showed high velo FB but couldn't command secondaries... has had shoulder issues off & on in minors... throws with infielder-type short-arm motion "out of his ear" (he was a two-way player -- 3B/RHP -- in college)...
       
    CALEB KILIAN:
    FB: 96-99
    CH: 84-86
    SL: 81-82 
    COMMENT: Threw two very efficient innings... dominant outing... needed only 24 pitches (16 strikes - six swing & miss)... 6 up / 6 down (K-swing on 98 FB, 4-3 GO on 98 FB, 5-3 GO on SL, 6-3 GO on 97 FB,  K-swing on 99 FB, and F-8 on SL)... held high FB velo in both innings (he was consistently sitting on 98 in both innings and he hit 99 once in each inning) and looked like he could have gone longer...  

    RICHARD LOVELADY
    FB: 89-92
    SL: 81-84 
    COMMENT: Your run of the mill generic FB/SL lefty reliever... had an easy 13-pitch (8 strikes) 1-2-3 inning with two strikeouts (both swinging) on low 90's FB and a weak pop fly to CF...  

    JOSE CUAS
    FB: 92-94 
    SL: 81-83 
    COMMENT: Threw a scoreless inning (20 pitches - 15 strikes - four swing & miss, two on FB and two on SL)... although he did strike out two -- both swinging -- and threw 75% strikes, he had some difficulty putting hitters away (eight foul balls among his 20 pitches)... allowed an infield single that probably would have been a 6-3 GO if an MLB player was playing SS (Jefferson Rojas did not play the ball aggressively and he was a half-step too late with his "casual" throw to 1st base)... 

    THOMAS PANNONE
    FB: 84-85 
    CH: 82 
    CV: 70-73 
    COMMENT: Soft-tossing lefty who throws a LOT of mid-80's cutters and a very slow CV... 13-pitch (10 strike) 1-2-3 inning with one K (looking) on a cutter... got three swing & miss, all on cutters...  

    BAILEY HORN
    FB: 92-95 
    SL: 85 
    CV: 78-79 
    COMMENT: Threw an 11-pitch (8 strikes - two swing & miss) 1-2-3 inning with two strikeouts (both looking)... broke three bats and induced some weak contact foul balls and a pathetic "mushy" pop fly(?) infield out that wasn't exactly a line drive and wasn't exactly a pop up either...    

    PORTER HODGE
    FB: 94-95 
    CT: 90-92 
    SL: 82-85 
    COMMENT: Threw a 21-pitch scoreless inning to finish off the game... surrendered a walk and a single but also induced a game-ending 6-4-3 DP... one strikeout (swinging) and that was his only swing & miss... he looked a bit uncomfortable on the mound (he seemed kind of hyper while warming up in the pen, too) and had major command issues with FB (threw only 8 strikes out of his 17 FB and went to ball three count on three of the four hitters he faced)... he would appear to be nowhere near ready for MLB and maybe not ready for AAA (yet) either...  

  • crunch (view)

    "is there anything new on cody bellinger since we started the interview?" - boog

    "sorry, i think we're going into a (commercial) break." - carter hawkins

    ...and laughs

  • crunch (view)

    only 2 "pitchcom broke, yo" delays in the game so far...

  • crunch (view)

    kilian out here throwing 98mph in february.

  • Childersb3 (view)

    While we're all speaking about Morel's 3B defense being good enough, his swing has gotten better.

    You could see it a little last fall. He didn't drop his hands behind his body as much (barred arm). But in videos from his Winter ball and this Feb in AZ you can tell he's keeping his hands tighter to his body. He's just stronger and able to have a tighter swing now. He'll be even quicker to the ball this way.

    Fun times.  

  • Cubster (view)

    Cubs vs Sox.

    Dodgers hold my beer. 6 run first including Morel 2 run HR.

  • crunch (view)

    PCA has blue hair...with a buzz cut...odd combo.  he's 2 dozen face tattoos away from being a mumble rapper.

  • crunch (view)

    these uniforms are hot garbage.  everything Fanatics touches turns to...well, hot garbage.