The Cubs claimed right-handed reliever Alex Burnett off waivers from the Orioles on Monday. Burnett pitched in just two games for the Orioles this season and allowed three runs on four hits with two strikeouts and two walks (20.25 ERA, 4.50 WHIP). Burnett pitched in 67 games for the Twins last season and posted a 4-4 record with a 3.52 ERA and a 1.35 WHIP (71 hits, 26 walks and 36 strikeouts in 71 2/3 innings).
Alex Burnett was pitching for the Orioles Triple-A team in Norfolk and was 1-0 in seven games with a 1.86 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP. Burnett began the season in the Blue Jays system and has one minor league option season remaining.
The Cubs placed Kyuji Fujikawa on the 15-day DL as expected with a right forearm muscular strain. Fujikawa is scheduled to undergo an MRI on Tuesday to determine the severity of the injury. The Sun-Times reported that Fujikawa told the Japanese media that something “popped” or “snapped” in his elbow on a pitch to Joey Votto. Fujikawa did not address his injury with the Chicago media.
With the addition of Alex Burnett, the Cubs’ 40-man roster stands at 40 players.
The Cubs had planned to recall RHP Eduardo Sanchez from Triple-A Iowa. According to reports, Sanchez left the Iowa Cubs but the Cubs were able to add Burnett in time for Monday’s opener against the White Sox. Burnett will wear No. 50 and is expected at the Cell by game time.
The Cubs are optimistic that Fujikawa’s injury is not more severe than the forearm strain that sidelined him for a month already this season.