9/19 Clevenger, Dolis to join Cubs

The Cubs will add catcher Steve Clevenger and pitcher Rafael Dolis to the roster on Monday now that their season with Double-A Tennessee is over. Mobile beat Tennessee on Sunday to claim the Southern League Championship. Clevenger, a converted catcher, batted .295 with five homers, 27 doubles and 39 RBIs in 95 games, while Dolis was 8-5 with 17 saves in 19 opportunities and a 3.22 ERA in 51 games with the Smokies.

Cubs scouting director Tim Wilken said Monday he was proud of the fact that Clevenger is the 14th player the team has picked in the First-Year Player Draft since 2006 to reach the big leagues. A shortstop when he was tabbed in the seventh round in 2006, Clevenger switched to catching in 2007. Wilken joked that when selected, he told Cubs player development director Oneri Fleita that Clevenger “runs like a catcher” and not a middle infielder.

“The one thing that was constant was that [Clevenger] was a good hitter,” Wilken said.

Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts has decided to keep the Cubs’ player development staff intact for 2012 while he searches for a new general manager. Fleita recently received a four-year contract extension while Wilken is under contract for next year and on Monday, was assured that the team wants him to stay.

“I definitely think they’re going in the right direction,” Wilken said. “I’d love to finish my career here. Tom has shown confidence in our department. He’s been real supportive.

“There’s a lot of good people over here still,” Wilken said of the Cubs staff. “Hopefully, we’ll find a general manager we can get behind as well and really start progressing foward. We need to get better.”

What Wilken is looking for now are some “roster changers” — middle of the order pitchers and hitters.

— Carrie Muskat



Woo hoo, more young players to ride the pine, so exciting! Lord knows we have to give Hill more playing time than Clevenger, after all he has earned it by helping this team into fifth place. Dolis will probably be used like Guab, in a nonexistent sense. Mike Quade is an absolute moron, so I don’t expect any different.

NOW that Quade has an OPTION in Clavenger we never should see Hill cross the chalk again. In all fairness to Quade he was saddled all year with one suspect catcher and one non-existent catcher. One of Hendry’s lingering mistakes, Koyie Hill and his anemic if not horrible contribution will soon be sent packing. Clavenger and or Castillo should not only make the team but also have an equal opportunity to supplant Soto who has not progressed enough to warrant a starting job. But just because Quade was saddled with an inept catching tandem doesn’t mean the team wasn’t saddled with an inept manager. Quade and Hill can help each other pack their bags and take Quade’s “Ejection Trophy” with them.

Tim Wilken has earned the respect of all in baseball and kudos to the organization for his retention.

Smart move by Ricketts, keeping the people responsable for getting the good, young talented players in the system and letting go of the GM that fell in love with over-rated veterans one year too many. The new GM should be able to work with this crop of talent that Wilkens has helped assemble. Bring on 2012!

Congradulations Steve on making it to the BIGS! You’ve earned it with another fantastic season! Good luck – I wish you nothing but the best! – Kyle Campbell

Clevenger has earned being a major leaguer by achieving at every level and it was a privilege to watch your hustle through the years. Also Rafael congratulations and many fans are in for a surprise at the talent you are capable of on the mound.

Agreed about Clevenger, something the Cubs couldn’t do for Sandberg….

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