According to a report from Randy Reinhardt, the Cubs have added a right-handed reliever to the system. The Cubs purchased RHP Cole Brocker from the Normal CornBelters of the Frontier League.
Brocker spent a majority of his 2015 season with the CornBelters pitching in Independent ball. Brocker was 5-2 in 24 games, all in relief, with a 2.94 ERA and 0.95 WHIP. Brocker allowed 12 runs, 11 earned, on 25 hits with seven walks and 48 strikeouts in 33 2/3 innings.
Brocker was also in Atlanta’s system last year and appeared in 10 games over three levels. For Double-A Mississippi, Brocker did not have a record in four games and allowed 10 runs, seven earned, on 13 hits with two walks and five strikeouts in 4 2/3 innings.
This past season was Brocker’s second stint with Normal. Brocker was 1-1 in 19 games during the 2014 season with a 1.50 ERA and 0.86 WHIP. Over two years in Independent ball, Brocker posted a 6-3 record in 43 games with a 2.26 ERA and 0.91 WHIP. He surrendered 22 runs, 16 earned, on 42 hits with 16 walks and 84 strikeouts in 63 2/3 innings.
Cole Brocker is 6-foot-2, 220 pounds and he turns 26 on April 17.
Brocker throws his fastball in the 91-94 mph range and features a slider that gets a lot of swings and misses. Brooks Carey, the Belters’ skipper, said that when Brocker is fresh his fastball will top out in the mid-90s and he features a “great curve ball.”
Brocker started his college career at Sacramento City College. After the Tigers selected him in the 39th round of the 2011 draft, Brocker decided not to turn pro and pitched his junior and senior seasons for Oregon State.
In his last year at Oregon State in 2013, Brocker was 1-0 in 14 games with a 3.86 ERA and 1.37 WHIP. Brocker allowed six runs, five earned, on 15 hits with one walk and 11 strikeouts in 11 2/3 innings.
Based on his age and experience in the Braves’ system, Cole Brocker should begin the season with Double-A Tennessee.