Showing posts with label Kevin Gregg. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kevin Gregg. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Cubs sign reliever Jose Veras ... will he be closing games in August?

The Cubs have agreed with relief pitcher Jose Veras on a one-year, $4 million contract, according to reports.

The deal reportedly includes a $5.5 million option for 2015, along with incentives.

Without question, Veras, 33, will replace Kevin Gregg as the Cubs closer -- at least at the start of the year. I just wonder if another midseason trade isn't in Veras' future.

Last year, he began the season with the lowly Houston Astros, where he compiled a respectable 2.93 ERA and 19 saves in 42 appearances. Just before the trade deadline, he was sent to the Detroit Tigers for future considerations.

The Tigers hoped Veras would help solidify their bullpen for the playoffs. However, he and everyone else in the Detroit 'pen struggled in an ALCS loss to the Boston Red Sox.

I doubt, however, the rebuilding Cubs are concerned about Veras' playoff performance. I suspect they would like him to perform as he did last year from April to July, so they can flip him to a contender in exchange for minor league talent.

It's a plan we've seen the Cubs execute the last couple years. They've signed pitchers like Paul Maholm and Scott Feldman to team-friendly contracts. They get a decent or good half-season out of them, then trade them in July.

I won't be the least bit surprised if Veras is pitching somewhere other than Chicago when August rolls around.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Welcome back, Kevin Gregg!

The Cubs are having some problems when it comes to closing out games. First, Carlos Marmol imploded and got demoted. Kyuji Fujikawa was then named closer. That lasted about three or four days until Fujikawa developed tightness in his forearm and went on the disabled list.

On Sunday, the Cubs summoned Shawn Camp to protect a 7-6 lead in the ninth inning against the San Francisco Giants. Camp recorded the first two outs and was one strike away from earning the save. Alas, he gave up a game-tying solo home run to Hunter Pence. Later, he balked in the go-ahead run in the top of the 10th. The Giants went on to secure a 10-7 victory.

The Cubs have gotten so desperate for bullpen help that they signed the erstwhile Kevin Gregg to a minor-league contract over the weekend. You may recall Gregg was with the Cubs once before, recording 23 saves in 2009. He also had an inflated 4.72 ERA and contributed to the team's long history of spectacular late-inning meltdowns, much like the one Camp had Sunday afternoon. Along with Mel Rojas, Gregg is a member of the fraternity of crappy Cubs closers.

Nevertheless, we would be remiss if we did not welcome Gregg back to the Cubs organization: