Cubs righthander Manuel Rodriguez has missed most of the 2022 season with an elbow injury. He last pitched in MLB in mid-September 2021.
Friday, the Cubs activated Rodriguez from the 60-day injured list. To make room on the 26-man active roster, righthander Kervin Castro was optioned to Triple-A Iowa, and to make room for Rodriguez on the 40-man roster, Alec Mills was transferred to the 60-day injured list.
Rodriguez posted a 6.11 ERA and 1.698 WHIP in 20 relief appearances for the 2021 Cubs. Before that, though, he had posted a 1.31 ERA and 1.258 WHIP in 20 appearances last year split between Double-A Tennessee and Iowa. This year, in seven rehab outings, Rodriguez posted a 5.63 ERA and 1.750 WHIP, but with 15 strikeouts in eight innings.
Rodriguez throws hard. Here’s his 2021 pitch selection graphic:
His problem has always been command and a high walk rate. If he can get that under control he can be a useful MLB reliever. He’ll likely get many opportunities to show that over the last few weeks of this season.
Castro posted a 7.59 ERA and 1.500 WHIP in eight relief appearances for the Cubs after they claimed him on waivers from the Giants. I suspect his audition is over.
As for Alec Mills, I’m guessing he’ll be non-tendered at the end of the season. He had his moments, including a no-hitter in 2020, not bad for a non-drafted free agent.