REPORT: Cubs Re-Signing Brian Duensing for Two Years, $7 Million

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REPORT: Cubs Re-Signing Brian Duensing for Two Years, $7 Million

Chicago Cubs

Hey! A signing! A Cubs signing! A real-life, Major League, 25-man roster, left-handed reliever Cubs signing! RING THE BELLS!

According to Jon Heyman (and later confirmed by Ken Rosenthal), the Chicago Cubs have brought back left-handed reliever Brian Duensing on a two-year deal worth $7 million. Because the Cubs did not offer Duensing a qualifying offer at the end of the season, there are no draft-related considerations associated with this signing.

If you recall, the Cubs originally signed Duensing to a one-year, $2 million deal last December out of nowhere, before he went on to have a killer year on the North Side of Chicago. In fact, he was so good last season that despite being brought in – primarily – as a LOOGY, he actually wound up as one of the most important pieces of the pen, throwing 14 more innings against righties than lefties.

(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Here’s what Brett had to say about him and his season a few months back:

The 34-year-old lefty whom the Cubs scouted and plucked out of relative obscurity last year for $2 million, Duensing had a tremendously successful 2017 season. Not only did he post a 2.74 ERA (37% better than league average), but he also posted a 7.0% BB rate (trailing only Koji Uehara’s 6.7% on the team), an above-average 23.7% K rate, and nearly identical splits against lefties (.296 wOBA) and righties (.290).

Duensing was one of the Cubs’ best and most consistent relievers in 2017, and he also proved to be one of the better guys, raising funds to benefit childhood cancer research and treatment throughout the year.

We can get into Duensing’s 2017 in greater detail again some time, but suffice it to say that I’m very happy the Cubs brought back the 34-year-old reliever, especially on this deal, with an exceedingly low luxury tax hit. (For more on how the move benefits the Cubs in their starting pitching pursuit, see here.)

Duensing apparently had other, more lucrative options:

You can never be sure, but I’m willing to bet that the Cubs moves in the bullpen are now complete (absent some steal of a deal at the end of the offseason), but it’s hard not to like what they’ve assembled so far:

Brandon Morrow
Carl Edwards Jr.
Pedro Strop
Steve Cishek
Justin Grimm
Brian Duensing
Justin Wilson
Dillon Maples
Dario Alvarez
Mike Montgomery (if he’s not in the rotation)

Oh, and one final thought/bit of info:

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Author: Michael Cerami

Michael Cerami covers the Chicago Cubs, Bears, and Bulls at Bleacher Nation. You can find him on Twitter @Michael_Cerami