Randy Wells and Welington Castillo Optioned to Triple-A Iowa in Latest Round of Cubs Spring Roster Cuts … Samardzija and Volstad Named to Rotation

As expected the Cubs made several roster moves Thursday morning. According to multiple reports, Randy Wells and Welington Castillo were optioned to Triple-A Iowa. Steve Clevenger will begin the season as the Cubs’ back-up catcher.

Travis Wood, Dave Sappelt, Scott Maine and Casey Coleman were also optioned to Triple-A Iowa.

The Cubs also announced Jeff Samardzija and Chris Volstad will begin the season as the third and fourth starters in the rotation.

The Cubs announced Blake DeWitt and Joe Mather will be on the Opening Day roster. The corresponding roster moves have not been announced.

The Cubs reassigned several players to minor league camp as part of Thursday’s spring roster cuts. Matt Tolbert, Blake Parker, Blake Lalli and Edgar Gonzalez were assigned to minor league camp.

Rodrigo Lopez is still in the mix for a bullpen job. With the additions of Blake DeWitt and Joe Mather, the Cubs will have to create at least one spot on the 40-man roster. The additions of Lopez and Shawn Camp would require two additional roster moves. If Lendy Castillo does not make the Opening Day roster he will have to be offered back to the Phillies which will create one spot. Another spot could be created if Frankie De La Cruz does not make the team he is out of minor league options and would have to be put on waivers.

With the announced cuts, the Cubs spring roster currently stands at 30 players.

Stay Tuned … will update as more information is made available.

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  • Cloycub13

    I smell a trade

  • brent carmona

    Ahh so much stuff going on! Oh wait, have no fear, the CCO is here hehe. Great job keeping us informed.

    Neil I thought randy wells did not have any options left?

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      Technically Wells had one option left. Due to service time he had to clear waivers and accept the assignment. No one thought he would.

      • Tony_Hall

        Do you think it was due to his salary that teams passed on him?  

        Plus, he had to accept the assignment, I am assuming he would have lost his pay for the year, if he didn’t accept the assignment, if so, he had 2.7M reasons to go to Iowa.

        • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

          Yes, plus the Cubs could have pulled him back if another team tried to grab him.

          You are exactly right on the money, lot to turn down.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Comcast SportsNet: Sveum on W. Castillo: “He’s going to make a
    lot of money and probably play in All-Star games. He just needs to go
    down and play every day.”

  • Zonk

    That is very surprising on Randy Wells; the only thing I can think of is that the Cubs want him to remain a starter, to keep him for trade bait or injury backup.  Apparently a number of teams have inquired on Wells, though they are probably offering not much, hoping the Cubs just want to discard him basically.

    Clevenger is the right call at C; Castillo needs starter playing time.

    • John_CC

       Wells passed through waivers, which tells us that the Cubs knew the market for him — basically nothing.  All the rumored interest in Wells must have been so low that they figured it wasn’t worth trading and just test the waiver wire. 

      Randy Wells is not very good. In fact, he was awful last year. Yes, he fought injury, but over the past two seasons – 330 IP, he 15-20, 4.56ERA and 1.40 WHIP, his K/BB ratio is 2.0. 

      What do you guys expect for Wells? Or from Wells?  Don’t tell me he is better than Volstad.  And Snorter, over the past 2 years Wells’ and “Chi Chi’s” slash lines are barely discernible. Randy’s slight value comes by his age, that is all.

      • cubtex

        Randy was working on pitching mechanics all spring….Isn’t that what spring is for? lol

        • John_CC

          Yep…and for cutting the fat from the lean…

  • Ripsnorter1

    This almost guarantees that….

    1. Camp made the team. WHY?
    2. Chi Chi Lopez made the team. WHY?
    3. Castillo heads back to the Phillies. WHY?
    4. Frankie De La Cruz made the team. WHY?

    • cubtex

      To keep Lopez and/or Camp ahead of Lendy Castillo is ignorant! A 22 year old with a power arm and movement over a 37 year old and Lopez makes zero sense.

      • Tony_Hall

        Did I miss Castillo being cut?   

    • Rational Logic

      Uh, no.

  • DaCubs

    so Marshall brought us three minor leaugers

    • BosephHeyden

      Yeah, but Wood is going to be good. He went straight to the majors from the minors, so it isnt like a trip to the minors will ruin him.

  • Cloycub13

    The guy we got from the sox seems solid, a project, but not bad, Jair Bogaerts or something like that.

    • paulcatanese

      Is he a relative of Humphry?

  • Aaron

    That’s the Bogaerts guy the Cubs just got from the Red Sox.

    I’m shocked that Wells passed through waivers, but that just goes to show you that we all value our own players more than others do, which is perhaps why guys like Wells, Baker, DeWitt, Byrd, Soto, etc. stay…as they’re worth more to the Cubs right now than in a trade. 

    I know this is going to come across pretty strong, but I absolutely despise the fact that Baker, DeWitt, and Byrd are still on this team. It is absolutely the old way of thinking, and NOT what I thought we were getting with the new regime.

    Guys like Cardenas, Amezaga, and someone like Ty Wright, who has done nothing but hit in the minors, and turns 27 this year…..It’s time to give guys a shot that are deserving. Finally, Clevenger has his shot…it was about time, considering he’s like the lefty version of Wright….he’s not a spectacular player, doesn’t have much power, but all they do is hit….and hit…and hit, no matter what level they’re at.

    Here’s hoping Thoyer and friends have something up their sleeve with a Byrd, Baker, or DeWitt trade.

    • Ripsnorter1

      Amezaga is 34 years old. I don’t think he needs another shot to hit .182. He’s done that already.

    • Zonk

      They don’t need DeWitt AND Cardenas on the roster, and Cardenas still has options, and needs to work on his defense besides.  They would have to DFA DeWitt and eat $1 mil.  It’s a better idea to carry him and see if we can flip him later to a team with injury issues.

      I think they would have moved Byrd for the right offer, but feel that they will get more value closer to the trading deadline, once contenders shake out and injuries become an issue.  And there is no rush on B-Jax, may as well have him work on contact and set Super-2 status back a season.

      Ty Wright isn’t a prospect.  He is actually older than DeWitt; how is that progress?

    • cubs1967

      nothing done all off-season shows theo to be a “boy genius”.
      dejesus is the same as fukunuts.
      maholm is another over 30 JH move……..and coming off an injury.
      marshall trade was a disaster and typical of the Pk wrigley era of a clear salary dump……”theo: we have wood under control for 5 years……..really……”
      only stewart trade was somewhat acceptable…….and even then they overpaid getting back the ‘wild thing’ weathers who is already off the 40 man roster.
      dempster over garza for opening day?? yet garza is as SP to build around according to team theo.
      and there is more talent in iowa than the mlb roster beczu jed can’t trade anyone………OR release anyone when Ricketts said they could……….

      no one should be defending this off-season NOR should there be any grace period.

      does anyone think the magic johnson LA Dodgers will sit on their ass this off-season like theo did?? and notice, despite the 1.6 Billion dollar difference in mccourt’s purchase price in 2004 and now the sale price; he has NO ownership in the dodgers to “avoid” capital gains like Zell swindled Ricketts into doing……..so now we have to hear all the crying over the team debt………please.

      ricketts lucked into theo by a historic collapse…….nothing besides that has been positive.

      cubs have 3 yrs running of higher losses; 1st time since 1964-1966; when the team this year exceeds 91 losses (it will); will be 4 yrs of higher losses; 1st time since 1946-1949…….

      Ricketts is at least historic……..

      • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

        I respectfully disagree with your opinions.  I think Theo and Company have made many savvy moves to set us up in the future.  They came in with a bare cupboard and have begun the reloading process.  There are bright spots and some that aren’t as surefire.  That said I believe they are on the right track and in the future we’ll see that our new management knows more than we do. 

  • cubs1967

    So Castillo has been at AAA 2 years now and need more time there??
    He need to be in the majors; how does anyone know if he can even play at the MLB level………he could be another 4A player like the cubs are good at developing.
    Just mind boggling this whole offseason and now the MLB roster management; bjax-castillo-rizzo-all had great springs……and even dempster starting opening day…….Nothing is about putting the best team on the field; all about the vets and cheapass pursestrings.
    Sports Illustrated has the Cubs pegged for 66-96; and with off-season/ST that might be on the high side.

    3 minor leaguers for marshall…….2 words: shi* trade!

    so bombs away wood is now 7th on the cubs SP depth; maybe even 8th if rod lopez starts out good……..for the Reds closer. WOW!!

    here’s hoping my son’s playstation3 internet works OK; time for milb.com……no sense watching this crap; the real team is the iowa cubs.  wgn should look into their games instead.

    at least now I understand jed’s comment: the cubs should be highly competitive ………….with their AAA team!

    go cubs go, hey des moines, the iowa team is gonna win today;go iowa go………

    • Zonk

      Welington Castillo should be in Iowa.  He needs to work on his game calling and contact, neither of which is going to happen sitting on the bench in Chicago.  Clevenger is a more advanced receiver, just doesn’t have Castillo’s upside.  AAA is the right move for Castillo, for now. 

      It’s too early to evaluate the Marshall trade.  It’s not a good trade for 2012, but that wasn’t the point; it was a trade made for the longer term.  Who knows how Torreyes or Wood or Sappelt will do, I don’t think you can evaluate this trade at least until we see if Torreyes is a legit prospect. 

      • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

        I agree, I believe Torreyes, Wood and Sappelt could develop into quality big leaguers.  

      • cubs1967

        he needs to be at MLB level……Castillo is the more advanced catcher…….not sure where you get your info, but cleveneger has 1/2 year at AAA; castillo 2.

        take off the team theo cubby kool-aid rose colored glasses…….and put down the kool-aid.

        • paulcatanese

          And dont forget, Marmol has penciled himself in for the All Star game this year:)

        • Tom U

          Welington Castillo has a power arm and a quick release, and can cause base-stealers to think twice. However, he is a little stiff behind the plate and allows a lot of passed balls. His game-calling problems are well documented.

          On offense, Castillo is a bit all-or-nothing. He has good power, but strikes out at a 3.5:1 ratio. He’s also not much of a run producer. He needs to iron out some of these things (he lost a lot of time last year due to injury), but has starter potential.

          Clevenger has several things going for him. He’s left-handed, has put up more consistent offensive numbers, can play several positions, and is pretty good defensively at catcher. He sounds like a good back-up player to have.

          • Tony_Hall

            Stop trying to use reason and logic…it’s just wasted on him.

    • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

      Respectfully disagree with most of your opinions.  As the year plays out I think we’ll see the method to all the madness. 

      • cubs1967

        yes you do……and i;ve got several foreclosures I can sell you real cheap too………and I won’t wear the plaid sportcoat.

        if the majority of publications have the cubs pegged for 5th place and anywhere from 62-72 wins…….then you need to re-visit the definition of savvy…….you have it mistook for crappy.

        • Scott

          I think some people need to revisit the definition of patience….