We’ve been waiting all day for the Cubs to make a few roster moves, what with today being the deadline for teams to finalize their 40-man rosters for the purposes of the Rule 5 Draft (which takes place on December 6). The Cubs’ roster stood at 39 coming into today, so movement was necessary lest they risk losing some of their more experienced prospects in the Rule 5.
And add they did: four of the youngsters we expected them to, in pitching prospects Trey McNutt and Robert Whitenack, as well as second baseman Logan Watkins and third baseman Christian Villanueva.
To open up spots for those four, the Cubs dealt Jake Brigham, designated Bryan LaHair for assignment, and waived pitcher Carlos Gutierrez, who cleared waivers and accepted an assignment to Iowa.
With that, the Cubs’ 40-man stands at 40. Nick Struck is probably the biggest name the Cubs leave exposed to the Rule 5, but even that isn’t a huge surprise. As the offseason moves on, the Cubs will have to make more moves, obviously, as they add free agents and (possibly) a Rule 5 pick of their own. They’ll have to clear more spots first.
I’ll have more on the implications of these moves, individually (especially the LaHair one, which the Cubs apparently are telling folks is about LaHair heading to Japan (must not have found any takers for him)), but I wanted to get you the moves, themselves, ASAP.