RHP Matt Carasiti, acquired by the Cubs in a trade with Colorado for LHP Zac Rosscup in June, was given his release by Chicago and subsequently, signed with the Tokyo Yakult Swallows in the Nippon Professional Baseball League in Japan. Carasiti posted a 4.66 ERA with eight saves in 19 games for Iowa last season.
The Cubs signed free agent LHP Dario Alvarez, who split his 2017 campaign between Texas and Triple-A Round Rock. The 28-year-old went 2-0 with a 2.33 ERA in 18 games with the Express, while logging an only slightly higher 2.76 mark for the Rangers through 20 appearances. Alvarez has appeared in parts of four big league seasons with the Mets and the Rangers.
Chicago yesterday announced the signing of former Colorado Rockie, Tyler Chatwood. The soon-to-be 28-year-old inked a deal for $38 million over three years. The righty went 20-24 with a 4.27 ERA with Colorado over the last two seasons, tying for the NL lead with 15 losses in 2017. Of course, pitching in Coors Field and the thin Colorado air must be considered. Over this same span, Chatwood collected a 2.57 road ERA, the second-best mark in the NL over the last two seasons, trailing only Clayton Kershaw (2.16). He was at his best in 2016 when he set a Rockies franchise record with a 1.69 clip away from Coors Field.
Chatwood fills one hole in Chicago's rotation, joining Kyle Hendricks, Jon Lester and Jose Quintana. Jake Arrieta remains a free agent.
RULE OUT RULE 5
In November, Chicago added INF David Bote, RHP Adbert Alzolay and RHP Oscar De La Cruz to the 40-man roster as protection from the Rule 5 draft, which will take place Thursday.
Bote served a brief stint with Iowa in 2016, but spent last season with Double-A Tennessee. The 24-year-old hit .272 with 14 home runs and 59 RBI, capturing Southern League All-Star honors along the way. He also suited up for Mesa in the Arizona Fall League, continuing to impress with a powerful swing and the ability to get on base. In 19 games, he put together a .333/.395/.536 slash line.
De La Cruz is tabbed as the Cubs No. 1 prospect, according to MLB.com. The 22-year-old has a fastball that peaks at 97 and is projected as a potential back-end starter. Through five minor league seasons, De La Cruz boasts a 2.83 career ERA, though he has yet to make it past Advanced-A. With Myrtle Beach in 2017, he went 4-3 with a 3.62 ERA.
Alzolay ranks third among Cubs prospects according to MLB.com. The 22-year-old went 7-4 with a 2.99 ERA and 108 strikeouts compared to 34 walks between Advanced-A Myrtle Beach and Double-A Tennessee in 2017.
KEEP YOUR EYES ON…
Giancarlo Stanton is one of the prized free agents on the market this offseason. Though he doesn't fill an obvious hole for the Cubs, Chicago is one of four teams Stanton would accept a trade to (also Dodgers, Astros, Yankees) according to MLB.com. Based on the pool of teams on Stanton's list, it's clear he's ready to contribute to a contending team.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.