After clearing waivers, the Chicago Cubs’ Gonzalez Germen has been assigned to Triple-A Iowa according to Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune.
The right-hander has seen his share of organizations this offseason – beginning with the New York Mets before spending brief amounts of time with both the Texas Rangers and New York Yankees’ organizations. Ultimately, he wound up with the Cubs – who designated him for assignment after signing former Boston Red Sox left-hander Drake Britton.
However, fate would have it that he did not end up with yet another team. After clearing waivers, he’ll open the season in Des Moines with the Iowa Cubs as he works his way back to the big leagues.
To this point in his career, Germen has made 54 appearances spread across a pair of campaigns with the New York Mets, posting a 4.31 earned run average and similar 4.15 FIP in the 64 2/3 innings of work. Last season, the righty regressed from his 2013 form, as his ERA rose from a respectable 3.93 mark to a 4.75 clip.
His FIP also skyrocketed (2.90 to 5.57), as he was overall much less effective for the Mets in 2014. However, his strikeout per nine mark improved from 8.7 to 9.2 and his strikeout-to-walk ratio also took a step in the right direction, as he went from 2.06 to 2.21.
For the Cubs’ part, Germen is facing a seemingly endless amount of roadblocks at the big league level. First-year manager Joe Maddon already has countless right-handed relief options including Justin Grimm, Neil Ramirez, Jason Motte, Pedro Strop, Blake Parker and Hector Rondon.
That being said, having Germen waiting in the wings at the Triple-A level gives the organization another low-risk, high-upside option should injuries plague the Cubs relief corps.
In 2013, his rookie season, the righty was stellar, posting a 2.90 FIP across 29 appearances with New York. Replicating such a performance – even at the Triple-A level – could warrant Chicago at least giving him a look at the big league level in 2015.