chicago cubs logoToday, the Chicago Cubs claimed right-handed reliever Daniel Bard off of waivers from the Boston Red Sox. The 28-year-old was dominant from 2009 to 2011 before an ill-fated conversion to the rotation seems to have sapped him of his ability to locate the strike zone.

Earlier this week, I wrote about the possibility of the Cubs claiming Bard off of waivers, and there you can read more about his career arc. Here’s a snippet:

For all of the positive signals on Bard, unless the Cubs know something about his struggles this year that other teams don’t, we’re still talking about a guy who hasn’t been able to find the strike zone for two years. He’s young enough and talented enough to work it out, but paying him big league money on that hope is probably not the best use of the Cubs’ apparently limited funds right now.

That doesn’t mean the Cubs might not try to grab him now, though, and then pull off some roster maneuvering of their own.

Indeed, the Cubs could try to grab him now, and then themselves waive him at a more advantageous time this Winter (perhaps soon before the Rule 5 Draft, when teams often find it difficult to open up a spot to just hang onto a guy). If he clears, the Cubs could try and outright him off of the 40-man roster (subject to various rules about Bard’s right to elect free agency as a player with at least three years’ service time (though, at that point, he’d be a near lock to receive only a minor league contract anyway, so he might not elect free agency)). At the end of the process, if everything worked out all right and Bard decided to stick with the Cubs, they could have a nice lottery ticket who isn’t making big league bucks and isn’t taking up a 40-man roster spot.

We’ll see if that’s what the Cubs try to do with Bard, who definitely needs some work over the offseason. Now that he’s actually on the Cubs, rather than me merely speculating about him being on the Cubs, I’ll have more on Bard soon.

Bard’s 40-man spot comes courtesy of Cole Gillespie, who was just designated for assignment. He wasn’t likely to stick on the Cubs’ 40-man roster past September anyway, so the move is unsurprising.

  • Aaron

    Only 20,696 fans at Wrigley Field today, the smallest attended game since Sept. 26, 2002, between the Reds and Cubs.

    • wilbur

      that’s a very good turnout for a day game in september against a team that has a worse record than the cubs. Cubs fans are so loyal and wrigley is such a great place to go to a game, attendance will never be a problem. Some teams would be happy to draw that many fans for a weekend nite game.

  • Die hard

    Definition —-Websters Dictionary
    a poet, traditionally one reciting epics and associated with a particular oral tradition.
    ; noun: the Bard

    • DarthHater

      non sequitur (ˈnɒn ˈsɛkwɪtə)
      — n
      1. a statement having little or no relevance to what preceded it

  • Die hard

    If you liked my prior predictions you’ll love this one– as I have suggested over past few weeks Bud Black would look good in a Cub uniform — well I predict the Cubs will offer a player to Padres to release Black so Cubs can sign him in the event he’s not just fired but either way he’s Cubs 2014 mgr

    • chrisfchi

      I predict Cy Young and Babe Ruth will rise from the grave and sign with the cubs. Cy will pitch perfect complete games every 3 days and Babe will always go 6-6 hitting grand slams every at bat.

      • Die hard

        This is not Wrigley Field of Dreams– more like nightmares

        • N8theGr8

          In Wrigley Field of Nightmares Sveum would undoubtedly bat Ruth leadoff and use Young out of the pen.

  • Die hard

    And don’t discount Black-Hoyer connection as Sveum was not Hoyers choice

    • Cubs_Questions

      Look at how the Cubs were doing before trading away their biggest bat in Soriano though. Even with Castro and Rizzo in the midst of awful seasons and a bad Cubs team, Sveum and the Cubs were less than 10 games under .500, which was far better than I expected.

      Since then, the club has tumbled as they lost talent, predictably. Sveum has gained a lot of my trust this season, and I suspect the FO’s as well. After all, they knew they couldn’t judge off wins and losses yet, and he did about as well as could have with such a weak squad in 2013.

  • wilbur

    Bard more pitching for Iowa cubs. The backfilling of triple a continues. Iowa needs to make the playoffs next year, don’t want the farm team closest to your big league team to be the weakest in your minor league system. That should improve a lot over the next year, then maybe the chicubs will be ready to do the same.

    • ssckelley

      I don’t read to much into how well Iowa does. The Cubs typically stash veteran players at Iowa. The last time Iowa was really good they had Hoffpauir, Dubois, Scales, Snyder, LaHair, Jay Jackson leading the team. The best teams Iowa has had over the years were lead by 4A type players.

  • JM

    The Sox looked in their ball yard,
    Saw a man pitching like lard,
    Could not throw a strike,
    They said take a hike,
    That man was Daniel Bard.

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