Chicago Cubs Reportedly Sign Outfielder Ryan Sweeney to Minor League Deal

ryan sweeney red soxWell this was a pleasant development.

Over the weekend, I mentioned that it would make sense for the Chicago Cubs to take a look at recently-released outfielder Ryan Sweeney, who was bumped out in Boston after the emergence of super prospect Jackie Bradley, Jr. It made sense to the Cubs, too, because they’ve reportedly signed him to a minor league deal.

The Cedar Rapids Gazette reports that Sweeney inked his deal with the Cubs this afternoon, and he’ll head to AAA Iowa to serve as quality outfield depth.

Here’s what I said about Sweeney this weekend:

The Red Sox are letting 28-year-old outfielder Ryan Sweeney go, and I wonder if he might be an interesting pick-up for the Cubs on a minor league deal, if that’s the best he can find. Right now, the Cubs’ AAA outfield depth consists of Brian Bogusevic (if he sticks with the Cubs), Darnell McDonald (if he sticks with the Cubs), Jae-Hoon Ha (a very young player who isn’t ready for the bigs), and, of course, Brett Jackson, whom the Cubs would prefer not to call up until he’s ready, rather than in a pinch. Seems like there’s a pretty wide opening and need for Sweeney as depth. He really struggled in Boston after being dealt by the A’s last year, but, hey, depth-ers can’t be choosers. He’s good defensively, can play all over the outfield, bats lefty, doesn’t strike out, sees a lot of pitches … I’d like him in the organization. Smart money says the Cubs are feeling him out.

That’s Sweeney in a nutshell. He’s not going to be a difference-maker at the big league level, but he could absolutely still be a contributor off of the bench. He provides the Cubs nice cover in the event that an injury or trade occurs at the big league level before Brett Jackson is ready.

This is the kind of subtle move that I really love about this front office.

Brett Taylor is the editor and lead writer at Bleacher Nation, and can also be found as Bleacher Nation on Twitter and on Facebook.

92 responses to “Chicago Cubs Reportedly Sign Outfielder Ryan Sweeney to Minor League Deal”

  1. Rebuilding

    That just seems like a ridiculous bid to me. First, you had Dice K as a guide – inflation would expand that number and Darvish was arguably more heralded coming over (I’m not talking hype, but actual scouting) and with Wilson getting 6/127 it wouldn’t be that hard to figure out the Rangers had $120 million over 6 years to spend given that they just missed out on re-signing him. Looks like they got a bargain on Darvish at 6/111 total

  2. jt

    Had The Cubs won Darvish on Dec. 20, 2011, they might not have signed Maholm on Jan 10, 2012. The trade for Arodys Vizcaino would not have happened.
    Seems the fate of The Cubs turns upon how Arodys pitches and how The FO spends the money they saved.

    1. hansman1982

      Had they signed Darvish, they also, probably would have traded Garza last offseason.

      1. jt

        Garza had a great 2011 2nd half. The first half of 2011 was only pretty good. He had never strung 3 months in a row such as he did post AS break of that year.
        If they were trying to max his value then it had to be proved Garza could repeat those 16 consecutive starts. That is pretty much what happened with Dempster. Why wouldn’t they follow the same path?

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