Latest news and rumors: Cubs sign reliever, Hot Stove, and more

by - Columnist -
Jim Cowsert - USA Today Sports
Jim Cowsert - USA Today Sports

Cubs’ news and notes

Cubs’ Opening Day: 55 days. (March 28 vs. Rangers)

Pitchers/Catchers Report: 12 Days.

First Spring Training game: 22 Days. (Saturday, February 23, Brewers vs. Cubs at Sloan Park)

On the move: It’s almost here… this month… three weeks. The Cubs equipment is loaded up and heading for Mesa, Arizona. Although it’s just a spring-training game, let’s hope our North Siders smash the hell out of those Brewers on opening day. #EverybodyIn

Tony Barnette:The Cubs have signed right-hander, Tony Barnette, to a one-year deal with a club option for 2020. Barnette will earn $750k in 2019, and the option is worth $3M if he stays for 2020.

The shuffle ends: Lefty Ian Clarkin who was claimed by the Cubs, White Sox and Cubs again this off-season, has cleared waivers and been assigned outright to Triple-A Iowa. The Cubs’ 40-man roster is now at 38.

Congratulations: Congratulations to former Cubs’ reliever, Justin Hancock and his wife, Tessa, on the birth of their daughter, Ivy Grace Hancock. Justin is heading to Japan to play this year, but based on his daughter’s name, his heart may be staying at Wrigley Field. In the meantime, Mom and daughter are both healthy and well.

Latest news and rumors from around the league

Cardinals: Red Birds’ President of Baseball Operations, John Mozeliak, is a feeling a little cocky about his team this morning. “Any move we would make now would sort of complicate things,” Mozeliak said. “Even if we were to break (camp) today, we’re going to have guys competing for at-bats already.”

Giants: SF has claimed outfielder, John Andreoli, off waivers from the Rangers and have designated right-hander, Derek Law, for assignment. The Rangers have also signed RHP Jason Hammel and infielder, Matt Davidson, to minor league deals.

Mariners: Seattle has outrighted RHP Max Povse to Triple-A Tacoma.

Mets: NY in their attempt to spend “stupid money” this off-season has now been connected to free-agent, Gio Gonzalez.

Nationals: Center-fielder, Michael A. Taylor was the first player this winter to go to arbitration and has lost his arbitration case. Taylor asked for a hike from $2.5 million to $3.5 million, and the Nationals countered with $3.25M before arbitrators Mark Burstein, James Darby, and Matt Goldberg. The arbitration salary will be $3.25M.

Orioles: Baltimore has signed catcher, Jesus Sucre, to a minor league deal.

Padres: Although they were late-bloomers this off-season, SD has immersed themselves in the hunt for free-agents. In the last week they have emerged as candidates for Harper, Machado, and Realmuto, and now they are rumored to be involved in talks with Gio Gonzalez.

Reds: Cincinnati has signed reliever, Zach Duke to a one-year deal.

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