Latest news and rumors: Cubs add All-Star reliever, Pollock signs, and more


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Brett Davis - USA Today Sports
Brett Davis - USA Today Sports

Cubs’ news and notes

Cubs’ Opening Day: 63 days. (March 28 vs Rangers)

Pitchers/Catchers Report: 20 Days.

First Spring Training game: 31 Days. (Saturday, February 23, Brewers vs. Cubs at Sloan Park)

Brad Brach: The Cubs added to the pen this afternoon with the signing of free-agent reliever (LHP) Brad Brach for a one-year contract worth roughly $4.35 million pending a physical. The deal includes a mutual option for the 2020 season that could make it a two-year deal worth around $9.5 million according to the Athletic. Brach has a career ERA of 3.08 and has racked up 33 saves.

More pitching on the way: According to Bruce Levine of 670 The Score, the Cubs will be signing more relievers and are currently talking to veteran reliever George Kontos.

Ricketts on Sosa: "At the moment, the answer is no, nothing's changed," Ricketts said via NBC Sports Chicago. "Like I've said in the past, everyone loved Sammy as a player — one of the greatest players in the history of baseball. But he played through a pretty awkward era. We owe all the guys that played in that era a lot of understanding."

Birthday wishes: Happy birthday to former Cubs’ announcer, Jack Brickhouse who would have turned 103 today. Brickhouse passed away August 6, 1988.

Per Wikipedia: “On February 27, 1998, Brickhouse fell ill and collapsed while preparing for the funeral of fellow Chicago broadcaster Harry Caray. Following brain surgery on March 3 to remove a blood clot, he quickly improved, making a few on-air appearances in the spring and early summer. Though burdened with a gravelly voice (which he attributed to the surgery and said would soon pass), Brickhouse seemed on the road to recovery until his death on August 6 from cardiac arrest. He was interred at the Rosehill Cemetery and Mausoleum in Chicago.”

Also celebrating today is Cubs’ lefty, Jose Quintana who turned 30.

Latest news and rumors from around the league

Yonder Alonso: The White Sox new first baseman is weighing in on the cold Hot Stove season and says he and other players believe the off-season free-agent policy must change. There has been recent speculation on MLB Network that the league may look into a deadline for off-season free-agent signings.

Dodgers: LA has reached a deal with the free-agent outfielder, AJ Pollock. They have been discussing a five-year deal in the $60 million-plus range, but it's unclear if those are the final terms. Because it was for more than $50 million, the Arizona Diamondbacks get another Comp A sandwich pick. As it stands, they have the Nos. 16, 26, 33, 34, 56, 75 and 78 selections. Should have most draft $ in 2019. The Dodgers are also still pursuing free-agent catcher, JT Realmuto.

Mariners: Free-agent reliever Hunter Strickland is in agreement with Seattle on a one-year contract.

Rangers: Texas has designated shortstop, Jack Reinheimer for assignment. Reinheimer was acquired by the Cubs as a waiver claim from the Mets in early November, but he was waived by Chicago on November 20.

Tigers: Detroit has claimed INF/RHP Kaleb Cowart off waivers from the Mariners.

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