Even while preparing for the 2017 postseason, the Cubs front office is not resting in trying to make a better roster for 2018.
They made a minor roster move Wednesday afternoon:
#Cubs claimed RHP Luke Farrell off waivers from Reds. Felix Pena DFA— Carrie Muskat (@CarrieMuskat) October 4, 2017
Felix Pena is 26 and has a good arm, but never really showed more than average ability in 36 major-league relief appearances in 2016 and 2017. He leaves with a career 4.98 ERA and 1.408 WHIP. He struck out 50 in 43⅓ innings. Someone will want him, I’m sure; the DFA means that perhaps the Cubs can work out a trade for a minor leaguer. Pena was one of the last players in the organization signed or drafted by Jim Hendry. On the 40-man roster, Javier Baez, Willson Contreras, Dillon Maples and Taylor Davis are now the only ones left.
Luke Farrell played college ball at Northwestern and is the son of Red Sox manager John Farrell. His brother Jeremy has been a hitting coach in the Cubs organization since 2016 and spent last year with South Bend, and his other brother Shane is a Cubs amateur scout. Luke Farrell was the sixth-round pick of the Royals in 2013 and was sold to the Dodgers and then claimed on waivers by the Reds this summer.
Farrell made one unsuccessful start (2⅔ innings, five runs) with the Royals. With the Reds he made nine relief appearances covering 10⅓ innings and posted a 2.61 ERA and 1.161 WHIP. He threw a scoreless inning of relief against the Cubs in Sunday’s regular-season finale. Also 26, Farrell has a chance to make the Cubs bullpen in 2018.
Last weekend, Farrell was among the Reds rookies spotted at the Wrigleyville Starbucks:
Perhaps just checking out the neighborhood for next year. Please welcome Luke Farrell as the newest Cub.