After Monday’s spring game with the Giants, the Cubs made it official and added LHP Phil Coke to the roster.
The Cubs selected the minor league contract of left-handed pitcher Phil Coke, and with the addition of Phil Cole, the club’s 40-man roster now stands at 40 players.
Phil Coke, 32, joined the Cubs on a minor league contract on March 5 after spending the last seven seasons with the New York Yankees (2008-09) and Detroit Tigers (2010-14), going 22-27 with 80 holds, eight saves and a 4.16 ERA (184 ER/398.1 IP) in 383 major league appearances (including 15 starts). He has turned in nine scoreless appearances this spring, covering 7.2 innings pitched.
The lefthander went 5-2 with a 3.88 ERA (25 ER/58.0 IP) in 62 relief appearances for the Tigers last season. In his career, he has limited left-handed hitters to a .243 batting average, a .297 on-base percentage and a .648 OPS. Coke had 21 holds with the Yankees in 2009 and 20 holds with Detroit in 2012.
Phil Coke opted out of his minor league contract Friday, according to Ken Rosenthal. The Cubs selected his contract from Triple-A Iowa. The Cubs will pay Coke $2.5 million this season. And he has a chance to earn another $900,000. The minor league contract he signed earlier this month carried an incentives package based on appearances.
LHP Jon Lester, RHP Jake Arrieta, RHP Jason Hammel, LHP Travis Wood and RHP Kyle Hendricks are expected to begin the year as the starting five.
RHP Hector Rondon, RHP Pedro Strop, RHP Neil Ramirez, RHP Justin Grimm, RHP Jason Motte, LHP Phil Coke and RHP Edwin Jackson are expected to begin the season in the bullpen.
The Cubs have not made an official announcement on the pitching staff for Opening Night.