Cubs News and Notes: Cubs add lefty, Robel Garcia, Brewers get stronger, Hot Stove, more
C.D. Pelham is now on the Cubs roster (Orlando Ramirez - USA Today Sports)

Cubs News and Notes: Cubs add lefty, Robel Garcia, Brewers get stronger, Hot Stove, more

by - Columnist -

Happy Thanksgiving

From all of us at CubsHQ, Happy Thanksgiving from our family to yours. May the turkey come out juicy, may the stuffing be moist, and may each of you and your families enjoy a happy, healthy, and safe Thanksgiving.

More than anything else, if you plan to “celebrate,” please drink responsibly.


Cubs add another arm: Yesterday, the Cubs claimed lefty CD Pelham off waivers from the San Diego Padres; the 40-man roster now stands at 38.

As per the Cubs’ Press Release, Pelham, 24, has gone 11-12 with 28 saves and a 5.51 ERA (121 ER/197.2 IP) in 158 career minor league appearances, all but seven in relief, covering the last five seasons in the Rangers minor league system. He made ten big league appearances with Texas in 2018, posting no record and a 7.04 ERA (6 ER/7.2 IP) in those outings. Pelham split the 2019 campaign between Double-A Frisco and Triple-A Nashville, combining to go 1-4 with an 11.97 ERA (43 ER/32.1 IP) in 42 relief outings.”

Much like the acquisition of Jharel Cotton from the A’s, I’m a little conflicted about this signing. Pelham’s 2019 results were horrific, but then again, he’s only 24 years old, and his fastball travels in the upper-90s. The Cubs will undoubtedly bury him in the roster in Des Moines and hope for the best, so all we can do is wait and see.

Robel Garcia: After a quick start and an even faster fade in 2019, Robel Garcia is taking on some winter work in the Dominican Republic.

Not much could have been expected from Garcia last year, as he transitioned from an Italian League to MLB. He started strong (offensively), but quickly found himself chasing bad pitches while trying to establish himself as a power hitter. His fielding was rough at the beginning, but Garcia was able to settle down some, making himself at least a viable option defensively (second base). Additional time in the sub-major league levels may prove to be what Garcia needs to continue growing.

Trade target? If the Cubs can’t be content with issuing the fifth spot in the rotation to either Tyler Chatwood or Alec Mills, Baltimore is reportedly working hard to find a trade partner to offload righty Dylan Bundy. Bundy is projected to earn $5.7M in arbitration this winter.

Currently carrying a 2019 WAR of 2.3, Bundy posted a 7-14 record with a 4.79 ERA (30 starts) in 2019 for the O’s. Before you choke over the W/L record, bear in mind that it’s not as though Baltimore gave him much run support. Bundy’s WHIP is a little high (1.355), but he’s averaging better than a strikeout per inning pitched, with a strikeout to walk ratio of 2.79.

Bundy did experience some control problems in 2019, delivering seven wild pitches and beaning six men, but when you consider the fact that he faced 700 batters this past season, the numbers fall back in line.

Nico Hoerner: Watch, as Cubs’ rookie infielder, Nico Hoerner explains why he’s back at Stanford this winter.

Carl Edwards Jr.: After disappearing from the radar after being dealt to San Diego, Carl Edwards Jr. will now be wearing a Mariners’ uniform. Fortunately for Edwards, this is a major league deal, worth $950k guaranteed and an additional $500k in possible incentives.

Cubs’ Birthdays: Celebrating yesterday were ex-Cubs Jason Berken (36), Ron Tompkins (75), Dave Giusti (80), and posthumously, Cal Howe (95), Bob Schultz (96), Johnny Schmitz (99), Tony York (107), and Hank Miklos (109).

Baseball Quotes: “Every pitch has a purpose. Sometimes he knows what he's going to throw two pitches ahead. I swear, he makes it look like guys are swinging foam bats against him.” -John Smoltz on Greg Maddux

MLB and the Hot Stove

NL Central Hot Stove:

Brewers: While the Cubs were busy claiming CD Pelham from the Padres, the Brewers took their off-season to a new level yesterday, swinging a trade with the Friars for infielder Luis Urias and lefty starter Eric Lauer, while shipping right-handed starter Zach Davies and outfielder Trent Grisham to San Diego.

Davies had an impressive 2019, but the Crew is looking add left-handed depth to the rotation with Lauer while filling the void left by Moustakas with Urias. Moustakas offered coverage at both second and third, but not only does Urias add depth at short – something Moustakas can’t do – he’s also nine years younger than Moose.

Pirates: The Pirates have taken another step toward rebounding from a season which they’ll (unfortunately) not likely forget anytime soon. Yesterday, the team announced that Derek Shelton would replace Clint Hurdle as the team’s manager.

From the Rest of MLB:

Padres: In addition to the Cubs taking Pelham and the deal with the Brewers, the Padres have signed free-agent reliever, Drew Pomeranz.

Rays: IF Matt Duffy has cleared release waivers, making him an affordable free agent option. Tampa has also acquired OF/1B Brian O’Grady, and in turn, has designated former Brewers’ 1B, Jesus Aguilar, for assignment.

Josh Harrison: Former Pirates’ infielder and 2x All-Star, Josh Harrison has accepted a minor league deal with the Phillies.

D-Backs: Arizona has signed catcher Stephen Vogt to a guaranteed $3M deal, with the possibility for Vogt to make up to $7M for two years.

Condolences: Phillies’ scout Will Brunson has died unexpectedly.

Rangers: Texas has claimed RHP Nick Goody off waivers from Cleveland.

Athletics: To trim an already low payroll, Oakland is discussing trade scenarios involving reliever Blake Treinen, IF/OF Jurickson Profar and catcher Josh Phegley. Barring trades, they could all be non-tender candidates for low-budget Oakland, which is projected to owe Treinen $7.8MM, Profar $5.8MM, and Phegley $2.2MM in 2020.

Marlins: According to Derek Jeter, the Marlins will not shy away from pursuing free agents this winter.

Rangers: Texas has signed free agent righty, Kyle Gibson.

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