The name most Cubs fans probably noted on their team’s non tender short list was Ian Stewart. But there were two other names that joined Stewart and both were a bit of a surprise in my book.
The first name is Zach Putnam. He is a reliever that was claimed off waivers last month from the Rockies. The move to non tender him was interesting considering he was just picked up, but Jed Hoyer did mention that he was interested in resigning Putnam. The former Rockie was not eligible for arbitration.
Neither was the other name on the non tender list, Jaye Chapman. This move was the biggest surprise of all, considering the rookie reliever had a good showing during his call up. He was part of the return combo for Reed Johnson and Paul Maholm last trade deadline. In 14 appearances Chapman kept a 3.75 ERA with an 0-1 record. The most impressive stat is his one strikeout per inning ratio. Missing bats is exactly what you want to see out of an end of the bullpen reliever. The downside with the former Brave prospect has been his command, as witnessed by his 7.5 walks per nine innings.
Hoyer mentioned that all non tendered players would be attempted to be signed to minor league deals later this off season. That further adds to the surprise of dropping Chapman, as his production in his cup of coffee figures to be good enough for some team out there to give him a Major League deal.
Regardless, these two names round out the non tender list and it will be interesting to see if Hoyer and Theo Epstein will be able to retain any or all of these players in Cubs uniforms for 2013.