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Cubs acquire Sean Newcomb from Braves for Jesse Chavez

A trade for a potential starter.

Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images

After the Cubs’ soggy 8-2 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays Wednesday (recap coming at the usual time, 8 a.m. CT tomorrow), the team announced it had traded reliever Jesse Chavez and a cash consideration to the Braves for lefthander Sean Newcomb.

Newcomb is 28 (turns 29 in June) and has had a rough time since a promising couple of years for Atlanta in 2017 and 2018, when he posted 1.4 and 1.8 bWAR seasons as a starter for the Braves, respectively.

This year Newcomb has made three relief appearances covering five innings for Atlanta and has posted a 7.20 ERA and 2.000 WHIP, with four walks and four strikeouts. I had seen Newcomb throw for the Braves on last Sunday night’s ESPN game against the Dodgers, and he didn’t throw real well but I thought perhaps he might make a nice reclamation project for the Cubs.

And here he is. He hasn’t thrown more than 38 pitches in any of his three outings so far this year, so the Cubs will likely use him in long relief to begin, but I suspect eventually he’ll be stretched out to start. He has a 4.20 ERA and 1.453 WHIP in 144 career appearances for Atlanta (57 starts), and was the No. 1 pick of the Angels (14th overall) in 2014. The Braves acquired him in a 2015 trade that sent Andrelton Simmons to Anaheim.

Chavez made six appearances for the Cubs this year with a 6.35 ERA and 1.588 WHIP and returns to Atlanta, where he had a pretty good year in relief for the Braves in 2021.


Sean Newcomb!

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