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Cubs signing Brandon Morrow, likely to close

The former Dodgers reliever will reportedly be a Cub in 2018.

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Multiple Twitter reports Sunday afternoon have the Cubs close to signing righthanded reliever Brandon Morrow, and I had been holding off posting about it until I saw this one, which has some details:

There’s been no official confirmation from the Cubs on this signing, nor does Heyman’s report (or any of the other tweets seen, such as this one from Bruce Levine) say how many years are going to be on this deal.

Morrow had a terrific year for the Dodgers in 2017, posting a 2.06 ERA and 0.916 WHIP in 45 games covering 43⅔ innings. He allowed 0 (zero) home runs, which was exactly what Wade Davis had done over the previous season before he joined the Cubs last winter. Morrow’s walk rates have been excellent since he became a fulltime reliever in 2015 (1.8 per nine innings). Walks, as you know, were one of the Cubs’ biggest issues in relief last year.

This signing would seem to indicate that the Cubs are moving on from Wade Davis. Morrow could be in line to close, or perhaps the Cubs could also go after Addison Reed, another setup man who’s been a closer in the past (Morrow did some long-ago closer work for the Mariners in 2008).

The risk here: Morrow’s really had only a couple of good years as a reliever and he turns 34 next July — he’s a year older than Davis.

But, depending on the years — maybe this is only a one-year or two-year deal? — it might work out.

Presuming this happens, the Cubs’ 40-man roster will stand at 36. Oh, and he’ll have to change the number he wore with the Dodgers, shown above.


Brandon Morrow!

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