Results tagged ‘ Rule 5 Draft ’

Cubs acquire Ovando, lose three prospects in Rule 5 Draft

The 2014 Winter Meetings were whirlwind few days for the baseball community, as numerous teams made blockbuster moves and signed highly sought after free agents. Another annual aspect of the meetings took place Thursday with the Rule 5 Draft, and the Cubs were active participants.

In the Triple-A phase of Thursday’s Rule 5 Draft, the Cubs selected outfielder Ariel Ovando. In four minor league seasons in the Astros’ farm system, the 21-year-old hit .233/.299/.335 (AVG/OBP/SLG) with 14 home runs and 43 doubles. It’s reported by MLB.com’s Carrie Muskat that the club will try to convert the lefty thrower into a pitcher.

Unlike the first portion of the draft, the club is not required to keep Ovando on the major league club this season.

However, the draft also resulted in a loss of three Cubs farmhands, with the Marlins selecting lefty reliever Andrew McKirahan in the first round, while slugger Rock Shoulders and catcher Luis Flores were taken by the Rangers and Astros, respectively, in the minor league portion.

The 24-year-old McKirahan has had a solid four-year minor league career, posting a 2.16 ERA, 1.08 WHIP and 128 strikeouts over 120.2 innings. He split 2014 between High-A Daytona and Double-A Tennessee, posting a 2.08 ERA over 65.0 innings and fanning 57 batters. He was originally drafted by the Cubs in the 21st round of the 2011 draft out of the University of Texas. The Marlins must keep McKirahan on the 25-man roster this season or send him back to the Cubs’ organization.

Shoulders hit 30 home runs over the last two seasons in Single-A ball and has the ability to draw walks, earning 121 free passes in that span. He has a career slash line of .243/.343/.427, but most of his numbers took a significant dip when he made the jump from Kane County to Daytona in 2014. The Cubs selected Shoulders in the 25th round of the 2011 draft.

Flores will join the Astros’ organization after seven seasons in the Cubs’ system. The 28-year-old split time between Double-A and Triple-A in 2014, amassing a .253/.388/.371 line with five homers in 67 games. He’s a career .213 hitter, a number weighed down by a poor offensive start to his career. Flores was originally drafted in the seventh round of the 2008 draft.

The Cubs also selected shortstop Taylor Featherston from Colorado in the first-round selection, but traded the 25-year-old to the Angels for cash considerations.

Cubs acquire Rondon in Rule 5 Draft

XM All-Star Futures Game

(Photo by Mark Cunningham/Getty Images)

The Cubs selected right-handed pitcher Hector Rondon, 24, from the Indians with the second overall pick in the Rule 5 Draft Thursday morning.

Originally signed as a non-drafted free agent in 2004, the six-foot-three, 180-pound hurler has a career record of 36-36 and a 3.88 ERA in 120 minor league games (587.0 IP).

Rondon was one of the Indians top prospects before struggling with injuries in recent years. He had Tommy John surgery in August 2010 and had a second procedure in December 2011, wiping out the majority of the last three seasons.

The Guatire, Venezuela native was named Cleveland’s minor league pitcher of the year and an Eastern League All-Star in 2009 after going 11-10 with a complete game, a 3.38 ERA (55 ER/146.1 IP), and 137 strikeouts in 27 games (25 starts) between Double-A Akron and Triple-A Columbus. That season, he ranked first in the Indians organization in strikeouts,  third in wins and fourth in innings pitched. In 2008, Rondon went 11-6 with a 3.60 ERA (58 ER/145.0 IP) and 145 strikeouts in 27 starts with Single-A Kinston, and was named a Carolina League All-Star and the ninth-best prospect in the league by Baseball America.

He did pitch seven innings to wrap up the 2012 campaign, posting no record with a 1.29 ERA and nine strikeouts in four games between rookie ball and Double-A Akron. Baseball America ranked Rondon Cleveland’s No. 22 prospect prior to the 2012 season.

Rondon will have to be on the Cubs’ 25-man roster for the duration of the season, or be offered back to Cleveland.

The Cubs lost right-handed pitcher Starling Peralta in the major league portion of the Rule 5 Draft when he was selected in the first round (14th overall) by the Arizona Diamondbacks. They also lost outfielder Michael Burgess, infielder Matt Cerda and right-handed pitcher Alvido Jimenez in the Triple-A phase of the draft.

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