Yesterday, we noted that righty reliever Spencer Patton had been released by the Cubs after a disappointing 2016 season where he failed to break through at the big league level despite dominating numbers at AAA.
In a turn not at all uncommon for players around his age and ability, Patton is now headed to pitch in Japan (Rogers, Muskat). For players who are so close to reaching minor league free agency, but who probably aren’t going to be carried on a team’s 40-man roster for the entire following season, heading to Japan to make some money while there’s life in the arm or bat can be a great approach. We’ve seen it before with players like Matt Murton and Bryan LaHair, and here’s hoping Patton gets a chance to make some life-changing money of his own. The Cubs may even have received a little bit of scratch in the process, too.
With Patton and David Rollins (claimed yesterday by the Rangers) now out the door, the Cubs’ 40-man roster stands at 37.
The Cubs will undoubtedly continue to search for bullpen depth this offseason.