In a move which should come as no surprise, the Cubs announced this morning that they have designated Randy Wells for assignment.
Wells failed to make it out of the fourth inning last night against the Mets. The 29-year-old right-hander gave up three runs and issued four walks, including one to opposing pitcher Dillon Gee, who was trying to give him an out with a sacrifice bunt.
Wells posted a 3.02 ERA as a rookie back in 2009, but he hasn’t come anywhere close to the same success since. After being limited to 23 starts last season due to a forearm injury, he has an ugly 5.34 ERA and 14/24 K/BB ratio over 28 2/3 innings this year.
Wells is making $2.705 million this season as a first-time arbitration-eligible player, so he should pass through waivers easily. As Patrick Mooney of CSNChicago.com notes, today’s move clears a spot on the 40-man roster for Cuban outfielder Jorge Soler, who should officially sign with the Cubs within the next few days.
Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw entered Wednesday night’s start against the Marlins without having issued a walk in his previous three starts. In fact, his last walk came on April 3 when he issued a free pass to Paul Goldschmidt with the bases empty and two outs in the bottom of the first inning. All told, Kershaw was on a streak of 26 walk-less innings before he took the mound at home to take on the Marlins.
Kershaw started off Wednesday in character, striking out the side in the first inning. He issued a walk in a tough second inning, but escaped without allowing a run. Kershaw walked two more in the third and again danced out of danger. In the fourth, Kershaw walked Lewis Brinson to load the bases with no outs and — you guessed it — didn’t end up allowing a run. His errant control finally came back to bite him in the fifth when Kershaw issued back-to-back two-out walks, then served up a three-run home run to Miguel Rojas down the left field line. His night was done when he completed the inning. Five innings, three runs, five hits, six walks, seven strikeouts, 112 pitches.
The six walks Kershaw issued over five innings marked his first six-walk outing since April 7, 2010 when he issued six free passes to the Pirates in 4 2/3 innings. The only other time he walked as many was on August 3, 2009 against the Brewers in a four-plus inning outing. Kershaw hasn’t even walked five batters in an outing recently — the last time was September 23, 2012 against the Reds.