Today the Chicago Cubs claimed pitcher Frankie De La Cruz off of waivers from the Milwaukee Brewers. De La Cruz, 28, is a reliever who had modest success in 13 innings of work with the Brewers last year (2.77 ERA, 1.154 WHIP, 9 Ks – again, just 13 innings), and decent PCL (AAA) numbers last year, too (3.88 ERA, 1.409 WHIP, 8.3 K/9). De La Cruz was mostly a starter at AAA last year, for whatever that’s worth.
He’ll presumably jump right into the fray, competing for a bullpen spot.
The claim is an interesting one, as, on paper, I don’t see anything jumping out to distinguish De La Cruz from a handful of other 20-something right-handed relievers vying for a spot in the Cubs’ pen, including Marcos Mateo, Rafael Dolis, and Blake Parker, among others. De La Cruz is out of options, so he either makes the team out of Spring Training, or goes back on the waiver wire.
Update: I didn’t think about the Chris Bosio connection – the Cubs’ pitching coach was down at AAA Nashville last year in the Brewers’ organization. There, he would have seen a great deal of Mr. De La Cruz, and probably liked what he saw.