According to ESPNChicago.com, the Cubs have signed pitcher Paul Maholm to a 1-year deal with a option for the 2nd year. Maholm will receive 4.25 million in 2012 and has a 6.5 million team option for 2013 with a 500K buyout. As the looks of it, Maholm took a discount to play with the Cubs. Maholm at one time was looking for more than 10 million a year.
Maholm is a a 29-year old left-handed pitcher (will turn 30 on June 25th). Maholm has a career 53-73 record with a 4.36 ERA and has 706 strikeouts. Maholm was drafted in the 8th round of the 2003 draft by the Pittsburgh Pirates. He made his MLB debut on August 3oth, 2005.
Paul Mahom was a free agent entering the 2011-2012 off-season. This signing makes a lot of sense for the Cubs. Especially since he’s a left-handed pitcher. Left-handed pitchers are always a good asset to have on your team. Maholm will join a rotation of Ryan Dempster, Travis Wood, Chris Volstad and Randy Wells. Also, he could join Andy Sonnanstine who the Cubs signed to a split contract. But he would have to pitch good and compete for a spot in the rotation. He’s not a guarantee in the rotation by any measure.
As you can see, I did not say he will join Matt Garza in the rotation. There’s still a chance he will, but Matt Garza could go to the Detroit Tigers. David Kaplan reported yesterday that the Tigers and Cubs “are down the road” on Matt Garza trade. That doesn’t mean Matt Garza is for sure going to Detroit. But the Maholm signing could mean that a trade is close.
I have to say that I love the signing… Especially when we won’t see James Russell, Rodrigo Lopez, Doug Davis, Russ Ortiz and Casey Coleman in the starting rotation. As of right now, Mahom will either be the 3rd or 4th starter (if Gaza is dealt).
More moves to come…