The Athletic’s Patrick Mooney and Ken Rosenthal report that the Cubs have signed reliever Xavier Cedeño to a one-year, $900,000 non-guaranteed contract.
Cedeño, 32, had quite a good season with the White Sox and Brewers last season, posting an aggregate 2.43 ERA with 34 strikeouts and 16 walks over 33 1/3 innings. The Brewers acquired him just ahead of the August 31 waiver trade deadline. Cedeño delivered, posting a 1.13 ERA in 15 appearances in the final month.
The Cubs have a handful of lefties already battling for spots in the bullpen with Mike Montgomery, Brian Duensing, Randy Rosario, and Kyle Ryan, so Cedeño will need to have a strong spring showing in order to make the Opening Day roster.
Last night Cubs catcher Willson Contreras was placed on the injured list with a strained muscle in his right foot. That injury inspired the Cubs to go out and get another catcher. They acquired Martín Maldonado in a trade with Kansas City in exchange for lefty Mike Montgomery, in a deal that was announced after the Cubs loss to the Reds.
Maldonado, 32, was a Gold Glove winner in 2017 with the Angels. At the moment he’s hitting .227 with six homers and 17 RBIs in 74 games. Obviously, though, defense is his calling card, as he’s a .220 career hitter with 57 homers and 210 RBIs in 686 games.
Montgomery, 30, is 1-2 with a 5.67 ERA in 20 relief appearances for the Cubs this year. He’s heading back to where his pro career began. He was drafted by Kanas City in 2008, though he was traded away in the James Shields/Wade David/Wil Myers deal in 2012. He made his big league debut for Seattle in 2015. Dayton Moore said last night that the Royals plan to use Montgomery in the rotation as a replacement for Homer Bailey, who was dealt to Oakland on Sunday.