clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Luis Avilan is a lefthanded reliever the Cubs should acquire

New, 13 comments

He’s coming back from an injury, but the Yankees released him recently.

Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Roster moves, in general, make sense in two instances. If they make the team better now without cratering the future. Or, if the future is aided without spiking the present. If the Cubs can make an addition that falls in either category, it should be weighed based on those considerations. An opportunity cropped up recently that should make the Cubs better in 2020, without subtracting any valued piece in 2020 or any other future season. The Cubs should sign Luis Avilan.

Occasionally, 40-man roster rules make a team ideal for considering regarding a transaction. When a team is really good, really deep, and suffering through a scourge of injuries, sometimes they will make a questionable move. Not so much questionable for the short term, but the longer term. The Yankees have had injury concerns all season long, and recent injuries have compounded longer-standing health concerns. After one game recent game, three players were placed on the ten day list, including Avilan, a left-handed middle leverage reliever. His outing compromised his numbers for the season, and shelved him.

Further concerns forced the Yankees to sign and later add Jordy Mercer to the 60 and then 28-man lists. Mercer is a pure stopgap, but is necessary for the Yankees to have enough depth in case anyone else is injured. To add Mercer, the Yankees had to create another roster spot. Avilan could have been moved to the 45-day list, but the team wants to use him when he's healthy. Instead, they released Avilan, hoping to bring him back when the injuries are less severe.

The most likely Cubs player to be bounced from the 40-man roster is Rex Brothers, who hasn't been particularly useful the last five seasons. Avilan was being used in a close game, recently, against the Rays, although he didn’t have a good outing that day.

I'm not technically certain if the Cubs could sign Avilan directly to the injured list (which he’s eligible to come back from on Wednesday) or not. If so, sign him, DFA Brothers, and go. If they need to make an intermediary move to create a 28-man roster spot, send Dan Winkler to South Bend temporarily, and give Justin Steele or Adbert Alzolay a look for a week or so.

Adding Avilan makes the Cubs better in 2020. When he's back, he might be better than Kyle Ryan. Adding Avilan costs no future talent, unless you prioritize Brothers long- or short-term. Sign Avilan to make the 2020 team better, and lose no players of merit in the process.