Chicago Cubs News: Third Base picture, Ethan Roberts, and more

May 17, 2022; Los Angeles, California, USA;   Los Angeles Dodgers designated hitter Edwin Rios (43)
May 17, 2022; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers designated hitter Edwin Rios (43) / Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The news of the day on Friday was the Chicago Cubs' surprise signing of free-agent third baseman Edwin Rios. We talked about the signing here and there is no doubt that the former Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman will have an opportunity at more playing time with the Cubs than he had in Los Angeles.

The signing was a surprise given the crowded picture that the Cubs already have at third base. Christopher Morel and Patrick Wisdom were expected to get a bulk of the playing time at third base prior to the Rios signing. The Cubs also have Zach McKinstry, Nick Madrigal, and Miles Mastrobuoni in camp. Rios is a left-handed bat that features elite power numbers so if that can translate to a regular role at the Major League level, he may find his way to being the team's primary third baseman before too long.

Madrigal and Mastrobuoni both have minor-league options remaining so the Cubs' addition of Rios likely puts both of their roster spots in jeopardy. Madrigal had been getting reps at third base during the early days of Spring Training but it would seem unlikely that he could play the position in any regular capacity.

Ethan Roberts update

In order to make room for Rios on the 40-man roster, the Cubs placed relief pitcher Ethan Roberts on the 60-day IL. Note, that the days won't start accumulating until Opening Day. Robert provided an update while speaking with Maddie Lee of the Chicago Sun-Times.

"“It sucks — I put the team in a bad spot with me being on the IL for a year and a half,” Roberts said. “It’s terrible. But this organization has been really good to me. Fans have been awesome. And I’m gonna make it up to them. It’s going to be fun. Just got to give me a little bit of time, but I’m going to make it up to everybody.”"

Ethan Roberts via Chicago Sun-Times

Michael Fulmer participating in team workouts at Cubs' Spring Training

Veteran relief pitcher Michael Fulmer is in camp with the Chicago Cubs and participating in team workouts. Fulmer's signing with the Cubs was first reported last week but the team has yet to make an official announcement. The Cubs will need to make a corresponding roster move to make room for Fulmer on the 40-man roster and it would seem that move could be placing Codi Heuer on the 60-day IL.

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