#Cubs avoid arb with 5 players
The Cubs avoided arbitration Friday with five of the seven players eligible, signing Travis Wood, Pedro Strop, Hector Rondon, Justin Grimm, and Adam Warren to one-year contracts.
The deadline to exchange salary figures was noon CT Friday. The Cubs players yet to sign included National League Cy Young winner Jake Arrieta and outfielder Chris Coghlan. The Cubs have talked about the possibility of signing Arrieta, 29, to a long term contract. The right-hander is coming off a stellar year in which he went 22-6 with a 1.77 ERA. He will be a free agent after the 2017 season.
Wood, who turns 29 next month, signed a $6.17 million contract. The lefty was 5-4 with a 3.84 ERA in 54 games last season, making a smooth transition from starter to reliever. He began the year in the Cubs rotation, and was 2-2 with a 5.06 ERA, and posted a 2.95 ERA in 45 games in relief. Wood made $5.685 million last season.
The Cubs’ primary set-up pitcher, Strop, 30, compiled a 2.91 ERA in 76 games, striking out 81 over 68 innings. The right-hander made $2.525 million last year, and signed for $4.4 million.
This is the first year Warren, Rondon and Grimm are arbitration eligible. Grimm, 27, signed a one-year, $1.275 million contract. He compiled a career-best 1.99 ERA in 62 games, striking out 67 over 49 2/3 innings.
Rondon, who turns 28 next month, signed a one-year, $4.2 million deal. He compiled a career-best 1.67 ERA in 72 games, converting 30 of 34 save opportunities. He lost his job as the closer, but called manager Joe Maddon’s move the “best thing that happened to me.” The right-hander posted a 1.10 ERA after the All-Star break. Rondon made $544,000 last year.
Warren, 28, was acquired from the Yankees in the Starlin Castro trade. The right-hander was 7-7 with a 3.29 ERA in 43 games, including 17 starts. He was 6-6 as a starter with a 3.66 ERA, and had a 2.29 ERA in 26 games in relief. He signed for $1.7 million.
— Carrie Muskat