Yesterday was the deadline to tender arbitration eligible players. The Chicago Cubs made no surprises and dropped a few players off of their 40-man roster and signed players as well.
The Cubs announced that they have signed infielder Donnie Murphy to a 1-year deal to avoid arbitration. Murphy will make 825,000 this season, plus incentives. If all incentives are reached, Murphy will make 1.175 million this season. The Cubs signed Murphy to a minor-league deal before last season and was later called up. Murphy was a surprise when he came up, but slipped off after a hot start. Murphy is not given a spot on the team and will still have to compete for a spot on the roster. Murphy joins George Kontarras as the two players to avoid arbitration on Monday.
The Cubs also non-tender infielder Mat Gamel and pitcher Chang-Long Lim. The Cubs acquired Gamel off waivers on October third from the Milwaukee Brewers. Gamel is coming off injury and has been working hard to get back to game action. Gamel would have not cost much, but the Cubs chose to the open spot on the 40-man roster over tendering him as contract. Lim joined the Cubs on September 7th after recovering from Tommy John Surgery. Lim was great in the minors, but could not throw strikes since coming to the majors and a main reason he was non-tender. Gamel and Lim join Daniel Bard as the 3 players to be non-tender on Monday. The Cubs 40-man roster currently stands at 37 players.
The Cubs announced that they have tender contracts to the rest of their 7 players … starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija, starting pitcher Travis Wood, infielder Darwin Barney, infielder Luis Valbuena, outfielder Nate Schierholtz, relief pitcher Pedro Strop and relief pitcher James Russell. The Cubs did tender a contract to Samardzija, but will still shop him and hope to trade him in a couple weeks if no contract extension will be reached. The Cubs are also working on a contract extension with Wood and that could have in the upcoming weeks as well.
Other note: The Cubs announced that they have re-signed outfielder Darnell McDonald to a minor-league deal. McDonald did play for the Cubs last season after being signed to a minor-league deal last season.
The Cubs will look at the players that were non-tender yesterday and see if a player fits them. If the player does, the Cubs 40-man roster will add players.