The Iowa Cubs announced the Cubs signed RHP Ben Rowen to a minor league contract. Rowen has been assigned to the I-Cubs and was added to its active roster Sunday.
According to the release, Ben Rowen opted out of his contract with the Baltimore Orioles on July 1 to sign with the Cubs. Rowen signed with the Dodgers in January and was traded by Los Angeles along with Chris O’Brien to the Orioles for Brian Ward, Ryan Webb and the Orioles competitive balance Round B pick in the 2015 draft.
The Rangers selected Ben Rowen in the 22nd round of the 2010 draft. Rowen appeared in eight games out of Texas’ bullpen last season. Rowen allowed four runs on 10 hits in 8 2/3 innings with seven strikeouts, four walks and three intentional walks (4.15 ERA, 1.62 WHIP, 2.90 FIP). Rowen was released last December and signed with the Dodgers in January.
The 6-foot-3, 195-pound right hander appeared in six games for Triple-A Norfolk in the Orioles’ system. Rowen gave up three runs on eight hits with three walks and six strikeouts in 9 2/3 innings. In 26 combined games between Double-A Bowie and Triple-A Norfolk this season, Rowen was 2-0 with a 2.41 ERA and 1.02 WHIP (10 runs on 32 hits with six walks and 24 strikeouts in 37 1/3 innings).
Over six minor league seasons, Ben Rowen has allowed 234 hits with 67 walks and 238 strikeouts in 299 1/3 innings and only seven home runs.
Rowen is a submarine right-hander and a groundball machine. Rowen throws a lot of strikes with a low-80s sinking fastball and a slider. Ben Badler said the Rowen’s “arm angle and the heavy life makes it a nightmare for hitter to try to lift the ball against him.”
With as much work as the front office and scouts did on the Rangers’ system during the 2012 and 2013 seasons it does not come as a surprise the Cubs would sign Ben Rowen to a contract.