Chicago Cubs: 5 moves that made the Cubs afraid to spend in free agency

Chicago Cubs (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Chicago Cubs (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

The Chicago Cubs were banking on Chatwood’s 2017 road ERA would translate to pitching away from Coors Field.

The Cubs needed to replace John Lackey in the rotation and saw an opportunity with pitcher Tyler Chatwood. The former Rockies pitcher had a terrible 6.01 ERA at Coors Field but had a 3.49 ERA on the road in 2017. The Cubs signed Chatwood in the 2017 offseason to a three-year deal worth $38 million.

Chatwood’s 2.83 ERA in April 2018 was better than it looked. He mostly got away with his 22 walks in 28.2 innings but things completely unraveled from there. Chatwood remained in the rotation through the end of July and was used sparingly from there on out. In all, he finished the 2018 season with a 7.38 ERA and 95 walks, five more than White Sox pitcher Lucas Giolito who pitched 70 more innings than Chatwood.

In 2019, Chatwood has pitched six innings in the young season, but he has allowed five walks and four earned runs. He figures to make spot starts for injured starting pitchers. Beyond that, his role in the bullpen is likely solidified until either his contract expires or the Cubs can find a way to trade him in the offseason. They will likely have to eat a decent chunk of his 2020 salary to find a trade partner.