Results tagged ‘ Rockies ’

11/2 Cubs claim Putnam

The Cubs added another arm to the bullpen mix on Friday when they claimed right-handed pitcher Zach Putnam off waivers from the Rockies.  Putnam, 25, is 19-12 with 26 saves and a 3.90 ERA in 171 career Minor League games, all but 15 as a reliever. He has given up 18 home runs over 295 2/3 innings and walked 94 while striking out 270. Originally selected by the Indians in the fifth round of the 2008 Draft, Putnam was traded to the Rockies in January for pitcher Kevin Slowey. Putnam has appeared in 10 Major League games for a total of 9 1/3 innings, and has a 4.82 ERA. Last season, he posted two scoreless appearances for the Rockies in two stints.

The right-hander spent the majority of 2012 with Triple-A Colorado Springs, and was 3-4 with 12 saves and a 4.15 ERA in 49 relief appearances. He converted 12 of his first 15 save opportunities and struck out 49 with 27 walks over 60 2/3 innings pitched.

– Carrie Muskat

8/22 Probable pitchers

After an off day Thursday, the Cubs open a 10-game homestand against the Rockies on Friday. Here are the pitching matchups:

Friday: RHP Jeff Samardzija (8-11, 4.17) vs. LHP Drew Pomeranz (1-7, 4.87)
Saturday: LHP Brooks Raley (1-2, 7.63) vs. RHP Alex White (2-6, 5.55)
Sunday: RHP Chris Volstad (0-9, 6.88) vs. RHP Jhoulys Chacin (1-3, 6.16)

– Carrie Muskat

12/8 Cubs get Stewart, Weathers from Rockies

The Cubs acquired infielder Ian Stewart and right-handed pitcher Casey Weathers from the Rockies for outfielder Tyler Colvin and infielder DJ LeMahieu.

Stewart, 26, is a career .236 hitter with 61 doubles, 54 home runs and 187 RBIs in 432 games with the Rockies covering all or part of the last five seasons (2007-2011).  A left-handed hitter who throws right, he has played 354 of his big league games at third and also has experience at second base and the outfield. Originally selected by Colorado in the first round (10th overall) of the 2003 Draft out of high school, Stewart reached the big leagues at the age of 22 in 2007 and completed his first full season in the big leagues by 2009, when he hit 25 home runs and recorded 70 RBI in 147 games for Colorado and helped the club to the postseason.  He batted .256 with 18 home runs and 61 RBI in 122 games in 2010.  

He split the 2011 campaign between the Rockies and Triple-A Colorado Springs, totaling two stints in each spot.  He batted .156 with six doubles in 48 games with Colorado and hit .275 with 14 home runs and 42 RBIs in 45 games at Colorado Springs.

Weathers, 26, was selected by the Rockies in the first round (eighth overall) of the 2007 Draft out of Vanderbilt University, where he was a 2007 First-Team All American.  By 2008, Weathers had advanced to Double-A Tulsa and earned a spot on Team USA at the Beijing Olympics before being sidelined by Tommy John surgery in October 2008, forcing him to miss the 2009 campaign.

The 6-foot-1, 205-pound Weathers returned to the mound in 2010 and pitched at Double-A Tulsa last season, going 2-2 with a 5.32 ERA (27 ER/45.2 IP) in 44 relief appearances.  He struck out 48 in 45 2/3 innings, but also issued 48 walks.  Weathers was added to Colorado’s 40-man roster following the 2010 campaign.

Colvin, 26, batted .215 with 26 home runs and 78 RBIs in 221 games with the Cubs covering all or part of the last three seasons.  After a 2010 rookie campaign that featured a .254 batting average, 20 home runs and 56 RBIs in 135 contests, Colvin split last year between Chicago and Triple-A Iowa, batting .150 with six home runs and 20 RBI in 80 big league games.  He was originally selected by Chicago in the first round (13th overall) of the 2006 Draft.

LeMahieu, 23, made his Major League debut with the Cubs last year and batted .250 (15-for-60) with zero home runs and four RBI in 37 games.  LeMahieu was originally selected by the Cubs in the second round of the 2009 Draft.

– Carrie Muskat

12/6 Cubs, Rockies & Ian Stewart

The Cubs have reportedly backed away from trying to deal for Rockies third baseman Ian Stewart — at least for now. MLB.com’s Thomas Harding reports talks have ended between the two teams. The Rockies have discussed infielder Blake DeWitt and outfielder Tyler Colvin in exchange for Stewart, and the Denver Post reported the Rockies asked about infielder DJ LeMahieu and lefty reliever Scott Maine. Stewart’s name has come up in talks with various teams since last summer’s non-waiver Trade Deadline.

– Carrie Muskat

2/5/10 Prickly issue in Cactus League

Cactus League teams want the Cubs to stay in Arizona. They just don’t want to pay for the Cubs’ new facility.

According to a story in the Phoenix Business Journal, the White Sox and Diamondbacks oppose a plan to have the entire Cactus League bankroll the $84 million stadium being built in Mesa for the Cubs. Arizona lawmakers are considering a plan to impose new ticket charges on all Cactus League games and raise rental car taxes in the Valley to help pay for the new complex.

Ticket surcharges have been used by specific cities to fund baseball stadiums within their jurisdictions, according to Cactus League president Robert Brinton. However, the latest proposal would mark the first time a league-wide fee would be imposed for one project.

White Sox president Jerry Reinsdorf told the Journal that other teams and their fans did not finance development of his team’s stadium in Glendale. D-backs President Derrick Hall also is opposed to the idea of league-wide ticket surcharges to benefit the Cubs.

“We want the Cubs to stay here badly, but not at the expense of our fans,” Hall told the Journal. “I’ve heard the argument that the other teams should be willing to because of the visiting crowds that the Cubs bring to their games. They do draw well, as do we, yet we were creative in our search for a new site to identify a partner willing to finance the entire project without public dollars.”

The D-Backs and Rockies will move into a new facility in 2011 that the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community is building east of Scottsdale. The tribe is taking a $23 million loan backed by federal stimulus money to help fund the $100 million project. The tribe, which operates two casinos, is paying for the remainder of the new complex.

Arizona House Majority Leader John McComish is formulating a financing bill for the Cubs. He has said he’s looking at options to pay for the new stadium, including ticket surcharges and increased taxes on hotels and car rentals. It has not been determined how much the surcharge would be. The Phoenix area already has high car rental taxes, with current rates totaling 18.53 percent.

Legislators may face criticism if they fast-track taxes for the Cubs as they cut education and social welfare programs in the face of a multibillion-dollar deficit.

Mesa City Manager Chris Brady said in addition to ticket surcharges and higher car rental taxes, Mesa voters will be asked to approve bond money as well as infrastructure and services spending for the new complex. Brady said tentative plans call for two-thirds of the $84 million to come from regional sources and one-third from the city. That translates into a split of $56 million to $28 million.

– Carrie Muskat

8/27 Harden, Heilman reportedly claimed

Cubs pitchers Rich Harden and Aaron Heilman have reportedly been claimed on waivers.

FOXSports.com cited Major League sources Thursday as saying a National League team was awarded the claim on Heilman. The claiming team on Harden was not known, but presumably he did not get through the National League, either. Players must pass through their own league first before being exposed on waivers to teams in the other league.

The Cubs will have until Monday to work out trades, allow Harden and Heilman to depart on claims, or pull them back them from waivers. Harden is 3-1 with a 1.80 ERA in eight starts since the All-Star break.

The Giants, Rockies and Dodgers all are interested in adding starting pitching, and Harden would be an attractive pickup. Harden is 8-7, 3.99 ERA overall in 22 starts, while Heilman is 2-3 with a 4.55 ERA.

– Carrie Muskat

8/19 Baker's dozen

Jeff Baker was a career .257 hitter in all or part of five Major League seasons with the Rockies when the Cubs acquired him July 2 for a Minor League pitcher. On Wednesday, he extended his hitting streak to nine games with a double in the second inning.

“You always like to believe in your abilities and your talents,” Baker said. “You believe that whether you’re hurt or not playing well, you believe you’ll get the opportunity to show what you can do.”

He was bothered earlier this year by a strained ligament in his hand that took the Rockies trainers a long time to diagnose. He doesn’t blame that for his early struggles.

“I was really frustrated and wondering what was going to happen and how the year was going to end up,” he said. “Personally, I”m ecstatic to be here and ecstatic to be playing well.”

He entered Wednesday’s game batting .343 in 30 games since he was acquired. That’s the main reason Baker is starting at second over Mike Fontenot, who was hitting .225.

“Playing for the Chicago Cubs and the talent that’s in here, that’s what it’s all about,” Baker said. “That’s when baseball is fun.”

There is one adjustment Baker has had to make. When in Colorado, he played with shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, who is much taller than Chicago’s Ryan Theriot.

“That is one area I’ve got to get used to,” Baker said, laughing, about the height difference.

– Carrie Muskat

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