Home / Sports / Cubs sign free agent pitcher Tyler Chatwood for 3 years and $ 38 million

Cubs sign free agent pitcher Tyler Chatwood for 3 years and $ 38 million



While the Cubs continue to expect Japanese free agent Shohei Ohtani to choose a Major League organization, they took a moment on Thursday to sign a much-needed starting pitcher at Tyler Chatwood.

"There are moments to attack quickly, and there are times to wait and gain courage," Cubs president Theo Epstein said after the announcement that Chatwood had signed a three-year, $ 38 million contract.

"Starting to launch is an area where there is more demand than supply, (while) in certain areas of the relief market there is a lot of supply, we think that if we could get the right holder in a reasonable deal before the winter meetings It was something we would like to do, it was not something we felt we had to do. "

Chatwood, 28 later this month, offers a good fit for now behind Jon Lester, Kyle Hendricks and Jose Quintana in the Cubs rotation. There is also room for Ohtani, 23, the pitcher / hitter who could decide to sign with the Cubs or one of the other six finalists next week at the winter baseball meetings in Orlando, Florida.

Epstein declined to comment Ohtani, saying, "That's our choice, we have a lot of respect for the player and the process, so we'll let the information (regarding his signing) come from (his) team. "

Lefty Mike Montgomery or another addition could serve as a sixth starter if Ohtani chooses the Cubs.

Meanwhile, the Cubs hope that Chatwood can extend his success to Wrigley Field, where he is 2-0 with a 0.69 ERA in two games, the Cubs believe that the former Rockies head will benefit by throwing his local games away from Coors Field, which he is friends with. The batters think they will feel safer to use their curve and other throws instead of relying on both their 90 mph high straight and changing their launch point.

"I can focus on doing my pitches and working on it. more consistent way, "said Chatwood." I do not have to worry if (pitches) will move or not. "

Chatwood is tied with S Tephen Strasburg for the second in the National League on the road ERA (2.57) in the last two seasons, behind by Clayton Kershaw (2.16). Since joining the Rockies in 2012 after a trade for the Angels, Chatwood has a 3.18 ERA in 50 appearances (44 starts) as a visitor, compared to 5.17 ERA in 53 games (44 starts) in Coors in height .

Chatwood, who missed all of 2015, has made 52 starts over the past two seasons since recovering from his second Tommy John surgery, which credits an out-of-season rehab training.

Despite adding to Chatwood, "we have a lot more work to do," said Epstein, whose next step could involve a closer as he waited for Ohtani's decision.

"We certainly have not finished," he said. "The focus of winter has been the launch, we need to continue to increase the rotation and redesign the bullpen to a certain extent."

mgonzales@chicagotribune.com

Twitter @MDGonzales


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