Chicago Cubs: Is Tyler Chatwood a rotation option for 2018?

DENVER, CO - JULY 06: Starting pitcher Tyler Chatwood
DENVER, CO - JULY 06: Starting pitcher Tyler Chatwood /
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The Cubs could benefit from signing Chatwood

Tyler Chatwood has spent six years in the major leagues making a living on contact outs. According to Fangraphs, more than 58 percent of the batted balls given up by Chatwood during the 2017 season were hit on the ground. Couple that with Chatwood’s low strikeout numbers, and it’s easy to see that the 27-year-old needs to sign with a team that has a good defense. There are not many teams that have a better infield defense than the Cubs, so ground balls given up by Chatwood would not be a problem.

I know Chatwood’s numbers may look bad on the surface, but if you do some digging, there may be hope for the right-hander. For example, Chatwood has a 5.25 career home ERA and a 3.31 road ERA. Of course, much of Chatwood’s career has been spent as a member of the Rockies, so that is not very surprising.

The Cubs should pursue Chatwood

Another thing to take into account is how well Chatwood has fared at Wrigley Field. The righty has made two career starts against the Cubs at Wrigley. In those two starts, which came in 2016 and 2017, Chatwood posted a 0.69 ERA and recorded 11 strikeouts and three walks in 13 innings pitched.

Taking all of these things into account, it would not be crazy to consider Chatwood as a possible free agent addition this winter. He would likely cost the Cubs less than $10 million to sign and would not bog down the books if things go wrong.

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Overall, Chatwood would provide the Cubs with a solid arm in the five spot of the rotation if the Cubs decide to pursue him this off-season.