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Cubs acquire Dauris Valdez from Padres for James Norwood

Norwood was designated for assignment last week.

Photo by John E. Moore III/Getty Images

James Norwood was the Cubs’ seventh-round pick in the 2014 draft. Over 23 appearances for the big-league Cubs from 2018-20 he posted a 4.50 ERA and 1.864 WHIP, with 21 strikeouts in 22 innings.

He was designated for assignment last week when the Cubs added Tony Wolters to the 40-man roster. Norwood always appeared to have talent — he could throw 97-98 miles per hour consistently — but never put it together in the big leagues.

Monday, the Cubs swapped Norwood to the Padres for righthanded pitcher Dauris Valdez. Valdez, who is 25, has a 3.97 ERA and 1.289 WHIP in 122 career appearances in the Padres minor-league system, all at the Double-A level or below. He’s pictured above throwing for the Double-A Amarillo Sod Poodles in 2019, and yes that is a real team.

Valdez does appear to throw hard — he has a career 11.1 strikeout/nine innings ratio in the Padres minor leagues, with a decent 3.7 walks/nine innings ratio. He’ll likely head to Mesa for minor league spring training and then be assigned either to Double-A Tennessee or Triple-A Iowa. Seems like a useful arm going forward.

The Cubs’ 40-man roster is not affected by this deal and remains full at 40 players.


Dauris Valdez!

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