Roster Moves: 40-man trimmed down to 37 on Wednesday


Feb. 29, 2012; Mesa, AZ, USA; Chicago Cubs pitcher

Trey McNutt

during spring training workouts at Fitch Park. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

It’s time for the annual fall cleaning – the Chicago Cubs busted out the hedge trimmers on Wednesday morning, trimming the 40-man roster down to 37 with a series of moves.

Catcher J.C. Boscan, outfielders Darnell McDonald and Thomas Neal, and pitchers Rafael Dolis, Trey McNutt and Zach Putnam were outrighted off the team’s 40-man roster after they cleared waivers.

McNutt was once regarded as one of the organzation’s top young arms, but a series of injuries have derailed his once-promising career. In 27 appearances this season with Double-A Tennessee, McNutt complied a 2-5 record with a 4.60 earned run average. Since reaching Tennessee three years ago, McNutt has failed to ascend higher in the Cubs’ system. In 2010, McNutt put it all together, going 10-1 in 25 starts between three minor league levels, striking out 132 batters in 116.1 innings of work.

Boscan and McDonald were simply filler pieces on this year’s club, and it would be surprising to see them back in 2014. They provided limited depth, but are hardly pieces of a contending team.

Dolis was once a highly-touted piece of the Chicago bullpen, but has struggled over the past season and a half. An injury this season added further complications to his struggles. He is still a potential player that could stick with the organization. In 2012, when he struggled at the big league level, he went 2-4 in 34 relief appearances, amassing an earned run average of 6.39, which, to say the least, left something to be desired.

Putnam was added on waivers last fall and dominated at Triple-A Iowa early this season before earning a call-up that was ended abruptly upon the discovery of bone spurs in his elbow.

Some of these players could be retained on minor league deals, but nothing has been announced of yet.