Member Of 2016 World Series Team To Opt Out Of Cubs Contract

Member of 2016 World Series Team to Opt Out of Cubs Contract | Yardbarker

Right-handed reliever Carl Edwards Jr. will opt out of his contract with the Chicago Cubs, as reported earlier Saturday. Edwards Jr and Chicago reconnected on a Minor League deal at the end of January, but the 32-year-old couldn’t crack the big league bullpen. Edwards Jr. spent the last two seasons with the Washington Nationals and was teammates with Dominic Smith, who opted out of his deal with the Cubs on Friday. In 32 appearances in 2023, Edwards Jr. tossed 31 2/3 innings. He finished the year with a 3.69 ERA, but a not-so-great 1.516 WHIP.

Carl Edwards Jr. to Opt Out of Cubs Deal

Success in the Spring 

Similar to Smith, Edwards Jr. performed quite well in the opportunities he received in camp this spring. In seven games, Edwards Jr. had an impressive 1.35 ERA in 6 2/3 innings thrown. He allowed just one run and two hits while striking out six hitters. Edwards Jr.’s three walks could have raised some concerns, but that is nitpicking when looking at his numbers in the grand scheme of things.

The Cubs bullpen for 2024 is looking for more consistency than in 2023. A stronger bill of health would be great as well, but that isn’t as controllable. The signing of Hector Neris will hopefully bolster the later inning efforts, but additions like him didn’t help Edwards Jr.’s case to make the team.

The End of the Road? 

Some have raised the question of whether this might be the last we see of Edwards Jr. around the big leagues after this opt-out. At 32, it wouldn’t be unheard of. However, he showed some promise this spring and put together an alright 2023 campaign. He still has something left in the tank, and if that requires him to play in Triple-A elsewhere, he could take on that challenge. The international route is always an option as well for Edwards Jr. However, one would have to imagine the nine-year veteran will exhaust all MLB-related options before going overseas.

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