Meet the new Cubs ahead of Opening Day

·4 min read

Meet the new 2023 Chicago Cubs originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

The Chicago Cubs had a busy offseason, inking numerous players to multi-year contracts as they aim to take a step forward following two rough seasons.

The Cubs last reached the playoffs in 2020, and though they are playing in a tough National League Central, they are still hoping for a much-improved campaign thanks to their offseason spending spree.

To help you get to know the 2023 Cubs, here are the new players that are on the team’s 26-man roster.

Tucker Barnhart

After losing Willson Contreras in free agency, the Cubs signed Barnhart to a two-year, $6.5 million contract after spending last season with the Detroit Tigers.

Barnhart had one home run and 16 RBI’s in 281 at-bats last season, batting .221 in his lone season in the Motor City. He will largely platoon with Yan Gomes behind the plate.

Cody Bellinger

The former National League MVP was non-tendered by the Dodgers after three straight subpar seasons, with 19 home runs and 14 stolen bases last season. He hit just .210, with 150 strikeouts in 504 at-bats.

The Cubs will hope he can regain the form he showed during his MVP-winning 2019 campaign, where he hit 47 home runs and drove in 115 RBI’s.

Brad Boxberger

The Cubs inked Boxberger to a 1-year, $2.8 million deal during the offseason after he spent the last two seasons with the Milwaukee Brewers.

Boxberger posted a 2.95 ERA in 70 appearances last season, with 68 strikeouts and a 1.23 WHIP in 64 innings of work.

Michael Fulmer

Fulmer signed a 1-year, $4 million contract with the Cubs as spring training got underway, giving the team another effective right-handed reliever in their bullpen.

Fulmer split time between the Detroit Tigers and Minnesota Twins last season, with a 3.39 ERA, three saves and 61 strikeouts in 63.2 innings of work.

Eric Hosmer

Hosmer is still playing on an eight-year, $144 million contract that he signed with the San Diego Padres, but the Cubs acquired him for a league-minimum deal after he was released by the Boston Red Sox following the 2022 campaign.

In 104 games with the Padres and Red Sox, Hosmer hit eight home runs and collected 44 RBI’s, with a .334 on-base percentage.

Trey Mancini

A jack-of-all-trades, Mancini signed a two-year deal with the Cubs after spending last season with the Baltimore Orioles and the World Series-winning Houston Astros.

Mancini hit a combined 18 home runs and drove in 63 RBI’s with the two clubs, with a .239 batting average and an on-base percentage of .319.

Miles Mastrobuoni

Mastrobuoni was acquired in an offseason trade with the Tampa Bay Rays, and will likely fill a reserve infielder role for the North Siders.

He appeared in eight games with the Rays last season, with a stolen base and a .188 batting average in 16 at-bats.

He had a strong season at the Triple-A level, with 16 home runs, 64 RBI’s and 23 stolen bases in 129 games with the Durham Bulls.

Julian Merryweather

Merryweather was claimed on waivers from the Toronto Blue Jays in January. 

He had 23 strikeouts in 26.2 innings last season, with a 1.43 WHIP, so the Cubs are hoping he can find some of the form that he’s displayed in the minor leagues during his career.

Edwin Ríos

The Cubs signed Ríos to a one-year deal after he was non-tendered by the Los Angeles Dodgers during the offseason.

In 92 plate-appearances last season, Ríos collected seven home runs and drove in 17 RBI’s, with a .244 batting average.

Dansby Swanson

The crown jewel of the Cubs’ offseason, Swanson joins the team after a successful run with the Atlanta Braves, signing a seven-year deal worth $177 million. 

Swanson won the National League Gold Glove award at shortstop last season and made his first All-Star Game, hitting 25 home runs and driving in a career-high 96 RBI’s for the Braves. He also stole 18 bases and batted .277 in 640 at-bats.

Jameson Taillon

Taillon was one of the big free agents landed by the Cubs during the offseason, inking a four-year deal worth $68 million after spending the last two seasons with the New York Yankees.

In the 2022 campaign, Taillon had a 14-5 record with a 3.91 ERA, with 151 strikeouts in 177.1 innings of work.

Luis Torrens

The Cubs will actually carry a third catcher on their roster after signing Torrens to a minor-league contract earlier this spring. The team has opted to add Torrens to their 40-man roster, doing so on Monday. 

Torrens spent the last three seasons with the Seattle Mariners, with three home runs and 15 RBI’s in the 2022 season. Prior to that, he hit a career-high 15 home runs in just 346 at-bats with the Mariners in 2021. 

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