12/16 Cubs sign Wright

The Cubs and left-handed pitcher Wesley Wright officially agreed to terms on one-year, $1.425 million contract. The deal was first reported Dec. 4, but the free agent pitcher needed to undergo a physical before it was finalized. Wright, 28, who was non-tendered by the Rays, is under team control for 2015.

The Cubs were looking for another left-hander to share the workload with reliever James Russell. Wright has combined to post a 3.28 ERA in 168 relief outings over the last three seasons. He split the 2013 season between the Astros and Rays, and was a combined 0-4 with nine holds and a 3.69 ERA in 70 relief appearances.

In 302 appearaces in all or part of six Major League seasons with the Astros (2008-13) and Rays (2013), Wright has posted a 10-15 record with 50 holds, two saves and a 4.37 ERA. In the last three seasons, Wright has walked 41 batters over 118 innings, an average of 3.1 walks per nine innings.

The Cubs are still in the market for a closer, and were reportedly talking to John Axford, who signed with the Indians on Monday. Other free agent relievers looking for a job include Grant Balfour, Joaquin Benoit, Fernando Rodney, Joel Hanrahan, Kevin Gregg and Chris Perez. Gregg saved 33 games for the Cubs last season.

— Carrie Muskat


May not put them over the top, but it will definately help Russell and the Bullpen. Last year Russell was dominate the first half, then after overuse, faltered the 2nd half. Another lefty in the bullpen will help keep both fresh.

Hey Carrie help me out if you could please. I read the article about the minor-league coordinators and I’m wondering what is a minor-league pitching coordinator, what are his duties?

Basically, the pitching coordinator oversees the development of all the Minor League pitchers. In the past, it’s been one person who travels from one Minor League team to another, spends a few days there to observe, then goes to another team. For example, pitching coordinator Derek Johnson would be with Iowa, then go to Tennessee (or often meet the team on the road). Having Mike Mason on board, he and DJ can split the workload and share notes. It’s always good to have another set of eyes. Obviously, the hitting coordinators monitor all of the position players, etc., etc.

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