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Insert joke about “if the Rockies don’t want a certain pitcher, nobody wants him.”

Today, the Cubs once again skimmed the waiver wire to pick up a fringy arm, who had been waived by the Colorado Rockies. That arm belongs to Zach Putnam, a 25-year-old righty who has had a couple cups of coffee, but has mostly been a minor league pitcher.

Putnam, a reliever, has pitched in four full professional seasons after being drafted out of the University of Michigan back in 2008. He made it to AAA by 2010, but has kind of stalled out there. His numbers are consistently in the 3.50 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 8 K/9, 3 BB/9 range. Good. Not great. Certainly good enough to be considered a candidate for the bullpen in 2013.

Putnam was the prospect the Rockies landed when they dealt Kevin Slowey (who was a non-tender candidate at the time, if I remember correctly) to the Indians before the 2012 season. Back in 2011, Putnam was a top 20 prospect for the Indians, and was considered a top 10 prospect for the Rockies this year, before falling back into the 15 to 20 range after a mediocre season.

You’ll notice a lot of waiver activity today, as teams make room for anticipated free agency signings, starting as soon as tomorrow. The Cubs snagged pitcher Carlos Gutierrez off of waivers from the Twins a couple weeks ago.

The addition of Putnam brings the 40-man roster to 34, but that doesn’t include Arodys Vizcaino, Matt Garza, and Ian Stewart, who are technically still on the 60-day disabled list. It includes Shawn Camp, who’ll be removed tomorrow when he hits free agency.

  • cub4life

    hmmmm another fringe guy………so does that put us at 36? 37? on the 40 man.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Was writing that at the same time as you. 34/37.

      • cub4life

        well if they do what we all seem to assume……insert joke…….we would go to the 37 and then back down to 35 with the subtraction of Camp (maybe?!?!?) and Steward (maybe?!?!?)….not much play

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          Yes, that will happen. Even if the Cubs want Stewart back next year, I can’t imagine they’ll tender him a contract via arbitration. Thus, he’ll be off the 40-man for now, and then added back whenever they sign him to a cheaper deal (if it plays out that way, I mean).

          • cub4life

            I agree with you…..and he might be our best option for now…..for now…..and if we do bring him back hopefully on a 1 year deal, he explodes and we get good young players for him.

            As for Camp, knowing what is out there, who is looking for relievers and Camp himself….what are our chances on bringing him back?

  • Andy

    What is the deadline to re-roster Arodys Vizcaino, Matt Garza, and Ian Stewart to the 40 man from the 60 day DL?? Or, at minimum, Arodys and Matt.

    • Kyle

      It presumably already happened. The DL disappeared when the season ended.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        They aren’t listed that way on Cubs.com, which has otherwise been kept up to date on every other transaction.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I have never known the answer to that question, and I feel stupid for not knowing. Seems like the start of free agency or the deadline for setting roster for Rule 5 purposes (late November) would make sense. The Googles aren’t finding the answer for me quickly. Anyone know?

      • cub4life

        http://www.yardbarker.com/mlb/articles/2012_2013_off_season_primer/12081049

        this says no later then 5 days after the WS is over…….so I guess that means today.

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          So, the start of free agency. Makes sense. Thanks.

      • Andy

        Arizona Phil is great at this type of thing. he has the 40 man at 32 before todays pick up with all three above still on the 60 day and he updated 10/29 or10/30.

        http://www.thecubreporter.com/cubs-40-man-roster

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          Yeah, he already has Camp off of there, which is essentially correct. 32, without Camp or Putnam.

          Really, it’s 33, for all intents and purposes, plus Garza and Vizcaino. So five “real” spots right now.

        • terencemann

          I love that list. Looks like only 5 players on the roster with more than 4 seasons of experience at the moment. Hah.

  • MightyBear

    Hey Brett/Luke

    How do you pronounce Tony Zych’s last name? Is it like rich or bike or something else? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Zitch – at least that’s how Jed said it on the call last night.

      Theo also said it, but I can’t hear how he said it in my head.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

      Rhymes with kick.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

        At least, that’s how the press box in Tennessee pronounced it.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        That’s funny. Maybe I mis-heard Jed, he mis-spoke, or Tony doesn’t care.

        • Stevie B

          Maybe you mis-remembered….. ala Roger Clemens.

  • Kyle

    His reputation seems a lot better than his stats would imply, although pitching in Colorado Springs is part of that.

    Still, trolling the Rockies’ scraps isn’t usually the way to find useful players.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      I’m assuming there were 40-man implications for them to let him go. The Rockies desire young pitching as much as the Cubs.

      • Kyle

        Well, that’s always true when someone is waived. It’s just “not good enough for a 40-man spot on the Rockies” doesn’t make me uber-excited about a guy.

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

          I suppose I meant that they had some particular issue hitting them starting tomorrow, to which we’re not really privy/informed. Maybe they have an exceptional number of guys to protect from the Rule 5. Who knows.

          But, yes, the point stands.

    • AB

      In 2007 I saw the Iowa Cubs lineup of Soto/Hoffpauir/Patterson/Cedeno/Moore/Murton/Pie score 19 runs at colorado springs.

      of course most of the damage was off of ‘The’ Dave Veres.

  • MightyBear

    Thanks gentlemen. Hopefully we’ll be hearing Kasper say “and another save for Zych” so much we hear it in our sleep.

  • Andy

    AZ Phil got it!

    For a player who is transferred from the MLB 15-day DL to the MLB 60-day DL (or from a minor league club’s 7-day DL to the minor league club’s 60-day DL), time spent on the MLB 15-day DL (or minor league 7-day DL) prior to being transferred counts toward the minimum 60 days a player must spend on the Emergency Disabled List. All players on a 60-day DL must be reinstated to the club’s Reserve List no later than the 5th day following the conclusion of the World Series.

  • Tim

    nyger morgan declines his assignment to AAA and becomes free agent. any chance the cubs view him as their CF and Dejesus stays in right?

  • Stevie B

    Dig my eyeballs out with a melon baller before we get Morgan. Seriously. Then salt them heavily.

    • ETS

      I’d rather have Nyger Morgan in the outfield than Joe Morgan in our booth. Jus sayin.

  • http://ehanauer.com clark addison

    I think I’d rather have bubonic plague.

  • Stevie B

    Id rather Mike Morgan than either one of those.

    Nyger Morgan needs to mmmmmmmmmmmmmmeeeet with an aaaaaaaaaccident.

    • daveyrosello

      I’d rather have Malena Morgan :-)

  • Tommy

    3.50 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 8 K/9, 3 BB/9 range

    Those numbers are about as good as anyone else we have in AAA right now. I’ll take a flyer on that guy.

  • terencemann

    Jeremy Jefress has been DFA’d by the Royals and could hit waivers next week. Wouldn’t be surprised to see the Cubs pick him up. He’s a hard throwing reliever with a high K/9 rate in the minors.

    • Dr. Percival Cox

      Why was he DFA’d? Control issues?

      • terencemann

        Yeah, he’s never been able to keep the walk rate down at the major league level but he only just turned 25. He walked a batter for every strikeout last season.

  • MightyBear

    Any thoughts on the Cubs going after Scott Baker as a starter? He could be a good fit for the right price. What’s he going to command?

    • terencemann

      He’s a hot name for the buy low market but it sounds like it’s almost a forgone conclusion that the Twins will re-sign him.

      • Hebner The Gravedigger

        Yup, the talk here in MSP is that Baker will be back with the Twins.

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