Many have felt that the Cubs bullpen needed a veteran reinforcement to help out, especially with the uncertainty regarding Brandon Morrow.
And now, they have done so:
Free agent reliever Brad Brach has agreed to a one-year, $3 million deal with the Chicago Cubs, a source familiar with the deal tells ESPN.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 24, 2019
Brad Brach, a righthander who turns 33 April 12, has spent most of his career with the Padres and Orioles. After Baltimore traded him to the Braves at the deadline last year for international bonus money, he turned in a great last two months in Atlanta: 1.52 ERA, 1.310 WHIP in 27 appearances covering 23⅔ innings.
Brach served as Orioles closer for the second half of 2017 (after Zach Britton was traded) and in 2018 until he was sent to Atlanta, so he has closing experience if needed. More likely, he will back up Pedro Strop and Steve Cishek in that role until the return of Morrow.
The $3 million figure is reasonable for a pitcher of his age and experience, and doesn’t bust the budget, likely leaving room for a midseason acquisition. There’s also this involved in the deal:
brach also gets mutual option on cubs deal @Ken_Rosenthal 1st with team— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) January 24, 2019
With this signing, the Cubs’ 40-man roster is full.
UPDATE: Clarification on salary details.
To clarify: Brach salary for 2019 is $3M. Buyout will add to that. https://t.co/MMiKuqOQUj— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 24, 2019
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