Erik Bedard has a spot in the Astros’ rotation

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Lots of veterans on minor-league contracts are getting released now that we’re near the end of spring training, but Erik Bedard was informed today he’s got a spot in the Astros’ rotation.

Bedard, who stayed in shape this winter by playing catch with his brother in a heated garage, signed a minor-league deal with Houston in mid-January after spending last season in Pittsburgh.

He had an ugly 5.01 ERA in 24 starts, but Bedard had 118 strikeouts in 126 innings and still has the potential to be a solid mid-rotation starter for however long he can stay healthy.

Cubs acquire Jesse Chavez from Rangers

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The Cubs announced on Thursday evening that the club acquired pitcher Jesse Chavez from the Rangers in exchange for minor league pitcher Tyler Thomas.

Chavez, 34, has pitched out of the bullpen for the Rangers this season, compiling a 3.51 ERA with 50 strikeouts and 12 walks across 56 1/3 innings. The veteran right-hander inked a one-year, $1 million deal with the Rangers in February, so the Cubs are on the hook for the prorated remainder — a little less than $600,000.

Thomas, 22, was selected by the Cubs in the seventh round of the 2017 draft. The lefty has made 14 starts and one relief appearance for Single-A South Bend, putting up a 2.88 ERA with an 81/14 K/BB ratio in 75 innings.