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Cubs reduce spring roster to 44 players

... but add back one player who had been lost in the Rule 5 Draft.

Michael Rucker, who the Cubs lost to the Orioles in the Rule 5 draft, is back
Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

The Cubs announced some additional roster cuts in spring camp Tuesday, but also made an addition to the big-league camp roster.

Righthanded pitcher Michael Rucker, who had been selected by the Orioles in the Rule 5 Draft last December, was returned recently by Baltimore. The Cubs have added Rucker to major-league camp as a non-roster invitee. Rucker was the Cubs’ 11th-round pick in the 2016 draft from BYU, and last year posted a 4.18 ERA and 1.318 WHIP in 36 appearances (one start) combined between Triple-A Iowa and Double-A Tennessee. Rucker did have a good K rate (10.5 per nine innings) and walk rate (2.8 per nine innings) in 2019. He appeared in three major-league spring games for Baltimore this year, throwing five scoreless innings, allowing four hits and two walks with three strikeouts.

The following players have been cut from camp:

Righthanded pitchers Adbert Alzolay and Colin Rea and infielder Zack Short have been optioned to Iowa. Catcher Miguel Amaya has been optioned to Tennessee.

Four non-roster invitees have been assigned to minor league camp: infielders Carlos Asuaje, Trent Giambrone and Corban Joseph, and outfielder Noel Cuevas.

That leaves 44 players in camp, consisting of 26 pitchers (including seven non-roster invitees), four catchers (two non-roster invitees), eight infielders (two non-roster invitees) and six outfielders (one non-roster invitee).