Players We Always Draft
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The Chicago Cubs made three marginal upgrades to their roster prior to Monday’s trade deadline. The Cubs have acquired lefty relievers Andrew Chafin from the Arizona Diamondbacks and Josh Osich from the Boston Red Sox, and outfielder Cameron Maybin from the Detroit Tigers, report MLB Network’s Jon Heyman and ESPN’s Jeff Passan.
Chicago is giving up one player to be named later for Chafin and Osich. The return for Maybin is unknown.
Chafin, 30, is currently on the injured list with a finger issue. He is expected to return soon and the Cubs must feel comfortable with his medicals, otherwise they would not have made the trade. Once healthy, Chafin will join Kyle Ryan and Jose Quintana as the lefties in Chicago’s bullpen. Brad Wieck, another lefty, is out with a hamstring strain.
Chafin has been a stalwart in Arizona’s bullpen since 2014. He’s allowed six runs in 6 2/3 innings around a finger injury this year, but has held left-handed batters to a .230/.307/.310 batting line in his career. That’s why the Cubs are bringing him in, to shut down big lefty bats like Christian Yelich and Jesse Winker down the stretch (and in the postseason).
Of course, MLB implemented a three-batter minimum rule this season, and it’s worth noting Chafin can hold his own against righties. He’s held them to a .246/.334/.362 batting line in his career. That’s not truly great but it’s not bad by any means. Cubs manager David Ross will be able to comfortably use Chafin for a full inning regardless of matchups.
Former Marlins president David Samson broke down Monday’s deadline on the latest Nothing Personal with David Samson. Listen below:
The D-Backs have lost 10 of their last 11 games to fall out of the postseason race. As a result, they turned into sellers at the trade deadline and sent center fielder Starling Marte to the Marlins and left-hander Robbie Rays to the Blue Jays.
Osich, 31, has allowed 10 runs in 15 2/3 innings this season. He’s held lefties to a .211/.283/.382 batting line in his career, though it comes in sporadic playing time since 2015. Given their careers to date, Chafin is the better bet to see high-leverage work than Osich, who is more of a middle-innings option.
The 33-year-old Maybin has authored a .244/.311/.415 batting line with one home run in 14 games with the Tigers this season. He gives Chicago a veteran right-handed hitting fourth outfielder to replace Steven Souza Jr., who is on the injured list with a hamstring strain.
At 20-14, the Cubs have the second-best record in the National League, though their bullpen has been an issue pretty much all year.
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