With spring camp set to open with pitchers and catchers reporting next Tuesday, the Cubs added another pitcher to the bullpen mix:
#Cubs acquire RHP Alec Mills from KC for OF Donnie Dewees. To make room on 40 man roster, LHP Dave Rollins DFA— Carrie Muskat (@CarrieMuskat) February 9, 2017
Donnie Dewees was the Cubs’ second-round pick in 2015, and Josh had him ranked his No. 12 prospect in the organization in his ranking last month. Dewees, though, was likely blocked with the Cubs with the development of Albert Almora Jr., and so it appears Theo & Co. wanted to turn him into bullpen depth.
Alec Mills was the Royals’ 22nd-round pick out of Tennessee-Martin in 2012. He had very good years for them in the minor leagues in 2013 and 2014, and made his major-league debut last May. He also pitched in two games for Kansas City last September. His 13.50 ERA and 2.400 WHIP in those games are too small of a sample size to judge.
Mills was primarily a starter in the minor leagues, and it’s not clear whether he’s being looked at for starting-rotation depth, or as a bullpen piece. He'll likely spend the season at Triple-A Iowa regardless.
There's a Cubs connection to Mills becoming available, too. He was designated for assignment by the Royals when they signed Jason Hammel.
As Carrie notes, David Rollins has been designated for assignment. This will be the sixth transaction for Rollins this offseason. I’m sure Theo & Co. are hoping Rollins clears waivers so they can give him a minor-league invite to spring training and have him available as bullpen depth at Iowa also.