The Cubs announced two roster moves Wednesday afternoon.
RHP Rafael Soriano was placed on the 15-day DL (retroactive to August 4) with right shoulder inflammation. The Cubs re-signed LHP Clayton Richard. Richard takes Soriano’s spot on the 25-man roster.
With Wednesday’s roster moves, the 40-man roster currently stands at 39 players and the 25-man roster consists of 13 pitchers (five starters, eight relievers) and 12 position players.
Clayton Richard elected free agency after he was designated for assignment Monday and passed through waivers. Richard re-signed with the Cubs and will pitch out of the bullpen. Richard gives the Cubs a much-needed long reliever and allows Joe Maddon to use Travis Wood as the second lefty in the pen with James Russell.
Rafael Soriano has struggled out of the bullpen. Soriano is 2-0 in six games with a 6.35 ERA and 1.59 WHIP. In 5 2/3 innings, Soriano has allowed four runs on eight hits, two home runs, with a walk and four strikeouts. Soriano’s velocity is noticeably down and not where it should be for a late-inning reliever.
Clayton Richard was 2-0 in four games, three starts, with a 4.29 ERA, 1.38 WHIP and 4.18 FIP. As a starter, Richard posted two win in three starts with a 3.00 ERA and 1.06 WHIP. Richard gave up six runs on 17 hits with two walks and eight strikeouts in 18 innings.
Clayton Richard began the season with Pittsburgh’s Triple-A Indianapolis affiliate and is 5-2 with a 1.86 ERA (13 ER/63.0 IP) in 10 Triple-A starts this season. Prior to left shoulder surgery in June of 2013, Richard pitched in all or part of six major league seasons with the Chicago White Sox (2008-09) and San Diego Padres (2009-13). He is 48-47 with a 4.33 ERA (382 ER/794.1 IP) in 151 appearances, including 132 starts.
In a three-season span from 2010-12 with San Diego, Richard twice won 14 games (2010 and 2012), led the N.L. with 33 starts in 2012 and posted a sub-4.00 ERA in all three campaigns. During that span, Richard combined to go 33-32 with a 3.88 ERA (224 ER/520.0 IP) in 84 starts. He was limited to 12 appearances (11 starts) in 2013 before being placed on the disabled list for the rest of the season on June 22. He signed a minor league contract with Arizona last July and made four minor league starts before signing a minor league deal with Pittsburgh this past off-season.
Without Soriano in the mix, Joe Maddon has RHP Hector Rondon, RHP Tommy Hunter, RHP Pedro Strop, RHP Justin Grimm, RHP Jason Motte, LHP James Russell and LHP Travis Wood in the pen along with Clayton Richard.