Cubs Selected Hector Rondon in Rule 5 Draft … Lost Starling Peralta to Arizona

The Cubs added a player to the system with the second pick in Thursday’s Rule 5 Draft. The Cubs took right-handed pitcher Hector Rondon from the Cleveland Indians in the Major League phase of the draft. The Cubs also lost a pitcher, 22-year old right hander Starling Peralta. The Diamondbacks selected Peralta in the Major League phase and will have to remain on Arizona’s 25-man roster throughout the year or he can be offered back to the Cubs. Peralta has not pitched above Class-A ball.

The Cubs lost three players in the minor league phase of the Rule 5 Draft. The Astros selected outfielder Michael Burgess with the first pick. The Cardinals took infielder Matt Cerda and Toronto selected right hander Alvido Jimenez in the minor league phase. The Cubs lost four players (two pitchers, an infielder and an outfielder) and picked up one in Thursday’s draft.

With the addition of Hector Rondon and once the signings of Kyuji Fujikawa and Nate Schierholtz are made official, the Cubs 40-man roster will stand at 40 players.

Hector Rondon has struggled with injuries over the last three years. Rondon had Tommy John surgery in 2010 after being named the Indians’ Minor League Pitcher of the Year in 2009. According to Baseball America, Rondon is healthy and throwing hard in Venezuela. The right hander turns 25 in February (February 26, 1988) and pitched in just two games (four innings) last season at the Double-A level.

Rondon missed most of 2012 after needing a second elbow surgery. When healthy, he shows good command of a low-90s fastball and tops out at 96.

Hector Rondon’s Page on Baseball-Reference

The Diamondbacks selected the 22-year old Starling Peralta from the Cubs. Peralta has not pitched above Class-A ball and while he has a big arm, reports are that is very raw. Peralta was 5-8 in 20 games, 17 starts, last season with Peoria. In 99 1/3 innings, Peralta struck out 86 and walked 42 while allowing 80 hits (3.44 ERA and a 1.23 WHIP).

More on Peralta from Baseball America: Peralta’s stuff picked up in 2012 as once 88-92 mph fastball now sits 92-94. He pairs that with a slider that shows flashes of being a plus pitch. Held RHB to .613 OPS in 2012, which may help in likely move to bullpen if he’s going to stick.

Starling Peralta’s Page on Baseball-Reference

The Cubs lost three players in the minor league phase: Michael Burgess, Matt Cerda and Alvido Jimenez.

The Cubs acquired Burgess from the Nationals in the Tom Gorzelanny deal. Burgess was selected by the Astros after putting together a .259/.350/.422/.772 line with 22 doubles and 10 home runs for the Smokies last season.

Michael Burgess’ Page on Baseball-Reference

Matt Cerda was taken by the Cardinals after hitting a combined .241/.374/.317/.691 in 111 games for the D-Cubs and Smokies last season.

Matt Cerda’s Page on Baseball-Reference

Toronto selected 21-year old right hander Alvido Jimenez in the minor league phase. Jimenez posted a 3-4 record in 15 games with the AZL Cubs (rookie ball) last year (2.64 ERA and a 0.85 WHIP)

Alvido Jimenez’s Page on Baseball-Reference

Complete Rule 5 Draft Results from Baseball America

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  • Neil
    • paulcatanese

      Thanks for the link Neil, after reading it, I clearly do not understand the pick-up.

      He appears to be another injury waiting to happen, feel sorry for the guy, but if it were me(and it’s not) I would have passed, 0 investment or not.

  • cubs1967

    so the plan is to disable him??……..for how long; sounds like he needs to pitch in the minors so how is he gonna get stashed on the MLB club…..really not understanding this pick. as bad as lendy castillo was; this sounds worse. what am I missing?

    • Scott

      A guy that was once a top prospect who scouts said had a lot of potential who is a zero risk proposition. Odds are that he will never be an impact player, but we are out nothing for the chance to find out. This isn’t some guy who never made it above A ball, this is someone who had a lot of success in the minors. What is not to like?

      • Theboardrider

        Agree with you Scott. Buy low, see what happens. Continuing with our consistent plans. These guys know what they’re doing…

    • cubs1967

      jason grilli is deciding now between priates-jays-cubs; assuming this is true; why are we chasing a 36 yr old reliever?….i thought that role belonged to shawn camp??……..just let the kids try again with bowden-dolis-belieavu-etc. so we lose 92 games instead of 96 in 2103; who cares?…..
      does ricketts really think cubs fans don’t see spending money just to spend……….it’s not relevant money for long term success with a player. (we could of just let rusin and raley pitch in 2013; not like baker or feldman will be around in 2015 or 2016.)

  • Tom U

    I kind of thought the Cubs’ system would be hammered in this year’s draft considering that they have a lot of “landlocked” players based on their “non-promotion policy” of the past.

    I am a little surprised that pitchers Frank Batista, Austin Kirk, and Felix Pena didn’t spark more interest. Here’s my take on the players the Cubs lost.

    Starling Peralta – like Aaron posted earlier, this is probably a 50/50 shot that he is either traded or returned to the Cubs. Being right-handed helps him in securing the “13th man” spot on the pitching staff, at least for the requisite 3 months.

    Michael Burgess – a slow developing prospect has three things going for him: he’s left-handed, had good to excellent power, and has a registered weapon for a throwing arm. He is not the “grinder” type that the Cubs would like to see, and was probably on his way out anyway with the signing of Johermyn Chavez.

    Matt Cerda – didn’t progress as expected following his promotion to Double-A last season. He remains a good contact hitter, and can play second or third base. His leaving opens up a lot of questions concerning Tennessee’s second base position. Will it be holdovers Dustin Harrington or Elliot Soto? Will Ronald Torreyes get a chance despite so-so statistics? Or is this where an older prospect such as Tim Saunders or Stephen Bruno lands?

    Alvido Jimenez – was tagged as Boise’s possible closer to start 2013. Has a big fastball and a closer’s mentality. He could be “the one that got away”.

    • Aaron

      I thought Batista was gone for sure, but teams probably didn’t think he projected well, especially with his late season slide that probably brought his value down. I was more nervous about Peralta and Rosario than everyone else. I just thought with their potential, teams might snatch them, and stash them much like the Cubs did with Castillo last year. I was right

  • Aaron

    Cubs likely just lost a landing spot for Soriano with the Phillies acquiring Ben Revere from the Twins

    • Neil

      Aaron, there is speculation since the trade for Revere that Philly is still looking for a bat in the outfield and bullpen help.

      • Aaron

        Cubs can help them out in both areas. Here’s what I propose:

        Soriano, Vitters, Barney, T. Wood, and Russell


        D. Brown, Bastardo, Aumont, Biddle, and Asche

        Russell alone is worth Bastardo and Aumont (both of whom have fallen out of favor with the Phillies…Bastardo especially with Charlie Manuel). Soriano and Vitters together would net Brown (like Bastardo and Aumont, has fallen out of favor with the Phillies) and Asche.

        I like this from both team’s perspectives. The Phillies are loaded with high priced veterans, and are looking to make one last go of it. However, they also need to get younger, hence the deal that just netted them Revere. Vitters and Russell help in that category. If the Cubs have to throw in Barney to get it done, so they can move Utley to 3B, then so be it. In that case, I’d ask for Jessie Biddle, and throw in Travis Wood to expand it even more.

        There are many possibilities, they just need to think outside the box and make it a win-win situation for both teams, much like the Rizzo-Cashner deal. Phillies fans might cry foul over that deal, but so might Cubs fans with the inclusion of guys like Vitters, Russell, and Barney. Incidentally, only Aumont and Bastardo have had success at the MLB level, whereas all but Vitters in the Cubs group have experienced success at the MLB level

    • Cubs4ever

      So did Michael Bourn. I get this strange sense he might end up with Cubs.

      • J Daniel

        That would be a good move, obviously depending on years. Not all of the CAN”T MISS prospects are going to make it. If both Soler and Almora do make it, then great. But that is a couple of years away.

    • Neil

      Aaron, from Todd Zolecki … Amaro said Phillies still have financial flexibility to fill other holes. I suspect they’ll continue to pursue corner OF with power.

      • Aaron

        Neil, from Michael in “The Office”…
        that’s what she said

        • Neil

          You got me again … well done sir.

  • Neil

    Jason Grilli re-signed with the Pirates … and Blake DeWitt inked a minor league deal with the Braves

    Update – Grilli is denying he has signed with the Pirates.

    • J Daniel

      Nice, Blake DeWitt!

  • J Daniel

    I realize that they have made some signings before the meetings but am kind of disappointed at the lack of no moves. I know the mode they are in but you would think something could get done.

    We will get the standard answer that almost every team will use… the meetings were really productive…we had a lot of conversations…the parameters of some moves were discussed…blah blah blah

    • Dorasaga

      Remember what Lou Piniella used to respond the fans (via media)?: “What can I say?” And another classic we all love: “a Cubbie Occurance.”

      It’s Rule V, relax. There’s no Josh Hamilton this year, so why should I sweat over another marginal win added or lost from minor leaguers?

  • daverj

    John Sickels did a real good write up on the Cubs minor league system the other day. He seems to think the system is now quite deep. I can’t remember the last time the Cubs had so many prospects rated B- or higher by Sickels. Things are definitely a lot more promising then they were a year ago!

    I would post a link to the article, but not sure Neil how feels about CCO’ers posting links to other websites.

    • Neil

      I am fine with you posting the link to Sickels report. I will be posting a full report on his list in the coming days.

  • Dorasaga

    O.M.G.! I pray that Swammi is alright:

    *** Just thought Neil posted, yup, fired behind Winter Meetings Day Two and Brett Jackson, a Sun Time article. I’m hoping his hearing is not impaired.

  • Neil

    Crasnick is reporting the Cubs have re-signed Ian Stewart …

    • DWalker

      I have been mostly expecting this, so no surprise. I gotta think that they have scrutinized him, poked and prodded enough on him they must actually feel comfortable with him coming back. Like I’ve said before, it will be interestignt o see what he does if he’s healthy and not trying to hide and work through it.

  • daverj

    I can’t get excited about the Rondon pick-up or the Peralta loss. Most likely neither of these guys will have a major league impact.