Results tagged ‘ Justin Grimm ’

Cubs recall RHP Grimm, place RHP Strop on 15-day DL

StropPhoto by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The Cubs today placed right-handed pitcher Pedro Strop on the 15-day disabled list with a left meniscus tear and recalled right-handed pitcher Justin Grimm from Triple-A Iowa. Strop is expected to be out 4-6 weeks. Grimm will be available for the Cubs tonight as they begin a four-game series against the St. Louis Cardinals at Wrigley Field.

The 27-year-old Grimm is 1-0 with a 4.58 ERA (18 ER/35.1 IP) in 46 relief appearances with the Cubs this season. He has 40 strikeouts in 35.1 innings pitched, an average of 10.2 strikeouts per nine innings, while limiting opponents to a .235 batting average, including a .195 mark by right-handed hitters. Grimm has spent most of the season with the Cubs outside of one relief appearance for Iowa on Aug. 1.

Strop, 31, is 2-2 with 21 holds and a 2.89 ERA (14 ER/43.2 IP) in 50 relief appearances with the Cubs this season.

Cubs activate RHP Hammel, option RHP Grimm to Iowa

Hammel(Photo by Stephen Green)

The Chicago Cubs today activated right-handed pitcher Jason Hammel off of the bereavement list. Right-handed pitcher Justin Grimm has been optioned to Triple-A Iowa.

Hammel is scheduled to make the start for the Cubs tomorrow night when they conclude their two-game series against the Los Angeles Angels at Wrigley Field. Hammel, 33, is 11-5 with a 3.07 ERA (41 ER/120.1 IP) in 21 starts with the Cubs this season.

Grimm, 27, is 1-0 with a 4.58 ERA (18 ER/35.1 IP) in 46 relief appearances. He made one relief appearance for Iowa on Aug. 1 in Omaha, striking out three batters in a scoreless ninth inning.

Cubs place RHP Hammel on Bereavement List, recall RHP Grimm

Grimm(Photo by Stephen Green)

The Chicago Cubs today placed right-handed pitcher Jason Hammel on the bereavement list and recalled right-handed pitcher Justin Grimm from Triple-A Iowa.

Grimm will be available for the Cubs this afternoon as they conclude their three-game series against the Miami Marlins at Wrigley Field.

The 27-year-old Grimm has no record and a 4.72 ERA (18 ER/34.1 IP) in 45 relief appearances with the Cubs this season. He has 38 strikeouts in 34.1 innings pitched, an average of 10.0 strikeouts per nine innings, while limiting opponents to a .235 batting average, including a .200 mark by right-handed hitters. Grimm had spent the entire season with the Cubs prior to being optioned to Triple-A following the game Saturday. He made one relief appearance for Iowa on Monday in Omaha, striking out three batters in a scoreless ninth inning.

Hammel, 33, is 11-5 with a 3.07 ERA (41 ER/120.1 IP) in 21 starts with the Cubs this season.

Cubs active RHP Grimm; recall OF Szczur

Grimm

Justin Grimm returns to the Cubs after a stint on the DL. (Photo by Stephen Green)

The Cubs activated right-handed pitcher Justin Grimm off the 15-day disabled list and recalled outfielder Matt Szczur from Triple-A Iowa on Wednesday. Outfielder Junior Lake has been optioned to Triple-A and right-handed pitcher Anthony Varvaro has been designated for assignment.

The 26-year-old Grimm returns to the Cubs after landing on the disabled list on April 10 with right forearm inflammation. He made one rehab appearance as part of his return, tossing a scoreless inning with a walk and two strikeouts on Monday for Iowa. Grimm made Chicago’s Opening Day roster for the second season in a row, but has yet to make his 2015 debut.

The right-hander went 5-2 with 11 holds and a 3.78 ERA (29 ER/69.0 IP) in 73 relief appearances last year with the Cubs, his first full season in the majors. Grimm tied for ninth in the National League in appearances while striking out 70 batters and walking only 27 in 69.0 innings. Overall, he stranded 25 of 30 inherited runners last year and posted a 2.60 ERA in 29 games following the All-Star break.

Grimm joined the Cubs as part of the five-player deal that sent pitcher Matt Garza to the Rangers on July 22, 2013. He was the American League Rookie of the Month with Texas in April 2013, and posted a 2.00 ERA (2 ER/9.0 IP) in 10 relief appearances with the Cubs following the trade that summer.

Szczur, 25, joins the Cubs for the second time this season. He was a member of Chicago’s Opening Day roster and batted .200 (2-for-10) with one double and one RBI in eight games before being optioned to Iowa on April 19. With Iowa, Szczur has batted .262 (11-for-42) with two homers, a triple and seven RBI in 11 games this season.

The outfielder made his major league debut with the Cubs last August and batted .226 with two doubles, two home runs and five RBI in 33 games. Szczur has played 14 games in left field, nine games in center field and 13 games in right field during his big league career. Overall, he has batted .222 with three doubles, two home runs and six RBI in 41 career major league games.

Lake, 25, is hitting .286 (4-for-14) with one double and one RBI in four games with the Cubs this season. He is batting .289 (13-for-45) with two doubles and eight RBI in 13 games with Iowa this year.

Varvaro, 30, was claimed off waivers from Boston on Sunday and was added to the 25-man roster yesterday. He did not appear in Tuesday’s game. He was traded to the Red Sox on Dec. 17, 2014, and went 0-1 with a 4.09 ERA in nine relief appearances this season before being designated for assignment on April 29.

Cubs place Grimm on 15-day DL; recall Schlitter from Iowa

Schlitter_Brian_YB15(Photo by Stephen Green)

The Chicago Cubs today placed right-handed pitcher Justin Grimm on the 15-day disabled list (retroactive to April 2) with right foreman inflammation and recalled right-handed pitcher Brian Schlitter from Triple-A Iowa.

Schlitter will be available for the Cubs Friday afternoon when they play the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.

The 29-year-old Schlitter went 2-3 with a 4.15 ERA (26 ER/56.1 IP) in 61 appearances for the Cubs last season, his first big league action since the 2010 campaign. He turned in a 2.98 ERA in 43 appearances prior to the All-Star Break before being slowed by right shoulder inflammation that led to a stint on the disabled list in August. Overall, he allowed one earned run or less in 54 of his 61 appearances, including 48 scoreless outings.

Schlitter was originally selected by the Philadelphia Phillies in the 16th round of the 2007 Draft and was acquired by the Cubs the next season for left-hander Scott Eyre. Schlitter made his big league debut in 2010 with seven relief appearances. He is a native of Oak Park in suburban Chicago.

Grimm, 26, has yet to appear in a game for the Cubs this season. He went 5-2 with a 3.78 ERA (29 ER/69.0 IP) in 73 relief appearances for the Cubs last season.

From the Pages of Vine Line: Cubs players reflect on their fathers’ influence

James-Russell
Cubs reliever James Russell is following in the footsteps of his dad, Jeff. (Photo by Stephen Green)

You grew up watching baseball on TV with your father. Then you played Little League, and your dad was the coach. Later, he started taking you to games, making sure the two of you got there extra early so you could snatch a few stray home run balls during batting practice.

For generations, baseball has been bringing fathers and sons together. Chances are, when you became an adult and had a son of your own, you tried to get him into baseball, coached his Little League team and took him to games too.

To celebrate Father’s Day this month, Vine Line caught up with a few Cubs players to discuss the almost mystical connection the game engenders. Though each person may have attached to the sport in a different way, there’s no denying baseball served as a valuable link between fathers and sons—just like it has in the past and will in the future.

Ryan Sweeney and his dad, Gary
“I think baseball is definitely, of any of the sports, the bonding thing between father and son, especially now that I have a son,” said Cubs outfielder Ryan Sweeney. “Sharing that with him is something that brings [us] closer together.”

Ryan credits his dad, Gary, for the success he’s had in the game, especially early in his life. Gary always pushed his son to excel, even if that meant making him do some extra work when the younger Sweeney wasn’t fully invested.

“My dad pushed me pretty hard to get me where I’m at,” Ryan said. “I might not have liked it at the time, but looking back, I’m glad he pushed me the way he did. He was my coach growing up for a lot of the time too. He never played baseball, but he tried to read up and learn as much as he could so he could teach me to do the right things.”

When Ryan finally did break into the major leagues, Gary happened to be visiting his son in Charlotte (home of the White Sox’s Triple-A affiliate). Ryan was at the stadium when he got the news and promptly called his parents. Though they didn’t believe him at first, they ultimately made the trip to Kansas City to see Ryan put on a major league uniform for the first time.

Despite having spent the majority of the last seven years at the game’s highest level, Ryan said he still shares the occasional instruction-filled phone call with his father.

“He tries to tell me what to do now, still, and how to play,” Ryan joked. “He’s constantly watching games on TV, saving my games, watching my swings, everything.”

Justin Grimm and his dad, Mark
When Justin Grimm graduated from junior high, he was faced with a difficult athletic decision. Both soccer and baseball were played in the same high school season, so he was forced to choose between the two. Though Justin was ready to put away the glove and bat for good, his dad, Mark, wasn’t in favor of the idea.

“He definitely leaned me toward baseball,” Justin said. “I thought I was a better soccer player at the time than I was baseball. He didn’t say, ‘You’re not playing soccer,’ but he did [say it] at the same time.

“He was a football fan, he loved football. He played at East Tennessee State in college, and he had a love for football, especially when I was growing up. Even to when I was 9, I was playing football, and I think it kind of crushed him when I definitely decided I wasn’t going to play anymore.”

Despite straying from his dad’s favorite sport, Justin said his father always supported his decisions and was somebody he could confide in growing up—even on topics he wouldn’t discuss with his close friends.

“[He] helped keep me encouraged, always feeding me positive thoughts instead of the negative ones,” Justin said. “He was pretty good with that growing up. Him and my mom both. They kept me on the right path, kept me going in the right direction, helped me stay into the right things and out of the wrong things.”

These days, the reliever said he gets a kick out of how excited his dad gets when he visits the clubhouse or throws the ball around with Justin in a major league outfield.

“He enjoys it probably 200 times more than I do,” Justin said. “He loves just going places, especially to different [venues]. Every time he comes into town, he wants to go see the park and what I do every day. And he wants to go to the team shop and get a bunch of gear, so he can support me back home. He’s definitely one of my biggest fans.”

James Russell and his dad, Jeff
Though James Russell is the son of former big league closer Jeff Russell, there was never any pressure for him to follow in his father’s footsteps. Still, between playing baseball every day and spending countless afternoons and nights in major league locker rooms growing up, the left-hander quickly formed an affinity for the game.

“He never really pressured me into it,” James said of his father, who spent 14 seasons in the majors, including 10 with the Rangers. “It was just something that I was good at, and I enjoyed playing. I loved all sports. I played everything growing up—football, basketball and baseball being the bigger three of the sports.

“Fortunately, I grew up in clubhouses that are a little bigger than ours at Wrigley, but it was fun getting into trouble. There were always a bunch of other kids that I [got] to hang out with. We’d find our ways and [make] little batting cages and stuff, so we could just mess around until security came and kicked us out.”

As James got older, he’d go to the ballpark virtually every day with his dad. While the Cubs reliever credits those trips for stoking his desire to play professional ball, he also knows how important those moments were for his father.

“That was some of the most memorable stuff out of his career,” James said.

With the roles now reversed, James has been informed his dad can be a tough guy to watch a game with.

“I’ve always heard he’s a real nervous guy whenever I’m throwing,” Russell said. “He can never sit down in a seat. He’s always walking around. He’s usually drinking a couple of beers to ease his nerves. If he’s not around a TV, he’s got it on his phone.”

John Baker and his dad, Dave
Entering Spring Training, journeyman catcher John Baker was on the outside looking in when it came to finding a spot on the Cubs’ 25-man roster. However, after a strong preseason showing in which he consistently provided outstanding effort, the North Siders found room for the 33-year-old backstop. Baker can thank his dad, Dave, for his solid work ethic.

“He was the biggest baseball influence I had [growing up],” John said. “There are still a lot of things I think in my head that my dad told me. His favorite line was ‘It takes no talent to hustle.’ That was his favorite thing to say. That … and ‘The most important position is the ready position.’

“He was always about being prepared, hustling and playing the game the right way—developing a strong work ethic. I got to see that as a kid, watching him go to work every single day. He’d get up with me at five in the morning and flip me baseballs in the side yard.”

Though many people were surprised to see John make the team over veteran free agent George Kottaras, one person never doubted it for a second.

“When I called [my dad] and told him I made the team here, he told me, ‘Son, I believed you were going to make the team, so two weeks ago, I went ahead and bought a ticket to Chicago,’ which was a really cool, validating feeling for me, knowing that he really believed in me without even telling me,” John said.

Dave played a lot of baseball growing up, so he had a good idea of how much effort it was going to take to make a career out of the game.

“There were days where I didn’t want to go [out to the field to practice], where he made me go,” John said. “And there were days where he came home from work, and I probably said, ‘Dad, can you throw me some balls?’ and he kind of went, ‘Yeah, let me take you to the batting cage. Let’s go do it.’ So it was give and take, but I was never turned down.”

Mike Olt and his dad, George
Early in Mike Olt’s career, his father, George, served as a sort of “baseball whisperer” for his son. As a former college player, the elder Olt had spent a fair amount of time around the diamond and knew a thing or two about the game. But if there was one thing he knew better than baseball, it was Mike.

“He knows I’m a head case, so he usually would tell me one little thing, which I probably wasn’t doing any differently [anyway],” Mike said. “Like, ‘Hey, raise your hands’ or something small that meant nothing.

“But he knew that was the only thing I’d think about and not what the pitcher was throwing. Next thing you know, I’m 4-for-4, 4-for-5, it was crazy. I’ve never seen anything like it.”

Mike grew up in Connecticut, listening to his dad tell stories about traveling to Yankee Stadium with his own father. Years later, Mike enjoyed taking those same trips to the Bronx with George.

“We always went to a ton of games at Yankee Stadium, me and him,” Mike said. “Those are the kind of memories you don’t forget.”

These days, the third baseman enjoys bringing his dad with him to Wrigley Field as often as possible. When Mike made his major league debut with the Rangers in 2012, George was in attendance, and his excitement was something Mike will never forget.

“Those are experiences that he’s going to be really proud of, and he’ll remember those forever,” Mike said. “I would do anything for him, anything for my family. To have him at the game and watching the highlights, seeing him and how happy he is, it does make me really happy. It’s kind of cool to see how excited he is for me and what’s to come.”

—Phil Barnes

Now Playing: Cubscast Mesa, The lighter side of the Cubs, Part Five

Playing professional baseball is a dream job, but it’s not the most likely career choice. So what would your favorite players be doing if their big league dreams hadn’t come true? We talked to Cubs personnel about some other possible career choices.

We’ll be posting videos and stories from Cubs Park throughout the spring, so watch the blog and our Twitter account, @cubsvineline.

Check out the other videos from our Spring Training series:

Cubscast Mesa: Positive Energy in Cubs Camp
Cubscast Mesa: Inside Cubs Park
Cubscast Mesa with Rick Renteria and the 2014 coaching staff
Cubscast Mesa with the top prospects
Cubscast Mesa: Meet the new guys
Cubscast Mesa: The lighter side of the Cubs, Part One
Cubscast Mesa: The lighter side of the Cubs, Part Two
Cubscast Mesa: The lighter side of the Cubs, Part Three
Cubscast Mesa: The lighter side of the Cubs, Part Four

Now Playing: The Lighter Side of the Cubs, Part Three

Everyone who has ever played baseball has had it happen—a misjudged pop fly that lands one foot behind you, a weak grounder that goes right through your legs or a moment of indecision on the basepaths that makes you look foolish. Major leaguers are no different.

In Part Three of our Lighter Side video series, we ask Travis Wood, Nate Schierholtz, Justin Grimm and others about their most embarrassing moments on a baseball field.

We’ll be posting videos and stories from Cubs Park throughout the spring, so watch the blog and our Twitter account, @cubsvineline. Later this week, we’ll give you an inside look at the new Cubs Park facility in Mesa.

Check out the other videos from our Spring Training series:

Cubscast Mesa with Rick Renteria and the 2014 coaching staff
Cubscast Mesa with the top prospects
Cubscast Mesa: The lighter side of the Cubs, Part One
Cubscast Mesa: Meet the new guys
Cubscast Mesa: The lighter side of the Cubs, Part Two

Cubs agree to terms with 19 players

CASTILLO W

Welington Castillo was one of 19 players to agree to a deal with the Cubs Monday afternoon. (Image by Stephen Green)

The Cubs have come to terms with 19 players on their 40-man roster with zero-to-three years of major league service time. The terms of the contracts were not disclosed.

The players who have reached agreements include right-handed pitchers Jake Arrieta, Dallas Beeler, Alberto Cabrera, Justin Grimm, Blake Parker, Neil Ramirez, Hector Rondon and Arodys Vizcaino; left-handed pitchers Zac Rosscup and Chris Rusin; catcher Welington Castillo; infielders Arismendy Alcantara, Mike Olt, Christian Villanueva and Logan Watkins; and outfielders Brett Jackson, Junior Lake, Matt Szczur and Josh Vitters.

Now Playing: The Lighter Side of the Cubs, Part Two

Think you know everything about your favorite Cubs players?

While you may be able to talk OBP, WHIP and VORP with the best of them, did you know Jeff Samardzija is a big fan of birds or that Travis Wood might be trying to read your mind? Every spring, we get personal with Cubs personnel to dig up some facts that you can’t find anywhere else. In the second part of our Lighter Side series, we ask Cubs players which talent or superpower they wish they had.

We’ll be posting videos and stories from Cubs Park throughout the spring, so watch the blog and our Twitter account, @cubsvineline.

Check out the other videos from our Spring Training series:

Cubscast Mesa with Rick Renteria and the 2014 coaching staff
Cubscast Mesa with the top prospects
Cubscast Mesa: The lighter side of the Cubs, Part One
Cubscast Mesa: Meet the New Guys

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