Cubs MLB Roster

Cubs Organizational Depth Chart
40-Man Roster Info

37 players are on the MLB RESERVE LIST (three slots are open)

Last updated 11-17-2023
* bats or throws left
# bats both

Adbert Alzolay 
Michael Arias
Javier Assad
Ben Brown
Jose Cuas
Kyle Hendricks
Porter Hodge
* Bailey Horn
Caleb Kilian
Mark Leiter Jr
* Luke Little
Julian Merryweather
Daniel Palencia
Michael Rucker
* Drew Smyly
* Justin Steele
Jameson Taillon
Keegan Thompson
Hayden Wesneski 
* Jordan Wicks

Miguel Amaya
Yan Gomes

Nico Hoerner
Nick Madrigal
* Miles Mastrobuoni
* Matt Mervis
Christopher Morel
Dansby Swanson
Luis Vazquez
Patrick Wisdom

Kevin Alcantara
Alexander Canario
* Pete Crow-Armstrong
Brennen Davis
# Ian Happ
Seiya Suzuki
* Mike Tauchman


Minor League Rosters
Rule 5 Draft 
Minor League Free-Agents

When the Skies of November Turn Gloomy

At 9 AM (Eastern) on Thursday 11/2 (the day after the final game of the 2023 World Series), 3B-1B Jeimer Candelario, RHP Tyler Duffey, and RHP Shane Greene will be automatically declared Article XX-B MLB free agents and will be removed from the Cubs MLB 40-man roster. They do not have to file. It is automatic. At that same time, RHP Michael Fulmer will be reinstated from the MLB 60-day IL and will be declared an Article XX-B MLB free-agent. 

The other six potential Cubs Article XX-B free-agents will be declared free-agents if and when the club option is declined (Hendricks and Gomes), the mutual option is declined by either party (Bellinger and Boxberger), or if the player opts-out (Smyly and Stroman). These decisions must be made no later than 5 PM (Eastern) on the 5th day after the final game of the 2023 World Series (Monday 11/6). 

5 PM (Eastern) on Monday 11/6 will also be the deadline to reinstate players from the MLB 60-day IL and minor league players from a minor league 60-day IL. If a club does not reinstate the player from the 60- day IL by that time, it is done automatically by the MLB Commissioner. Michael Fulmer will be automatically reinstated from the 60-day IL when he is declared an Article XX-B MLB FA on 11/2, but the other five Cubs on the MLB 60-day IL (RHP Nick Burdi, RHP Codi Heuer, LHP Brandon Hughes, INF Nick Madrigal, and RHP Ethan Roberts) must be reinstated and added back to the MLB 40-man roster by 5 PM (Eastern) on 11/6, unless the player is released, traded, outrighted to the minors, or Designated for Assignment prior to the deadline.  

In addition, 5 PM (Eastern) on 11/6 is the point in time when all unsigned players eligible to be an MLB Rule 9 minor league free-agent (second contract or 6YFA) will be automatically declared a free-agent if the player has not been selected to an MLB 40-man roster or has signed a 2024 minor league successor contract by that time. Again, players do NOT need to file for this type of minor league free-agency. It is automatic. Notable Cubs minor leaguers eligible to be minor league free agents on 11/6 are OF Yonathan Perlaza, and SS Luis Vazquez, both of whom are legit MLB prospects. 

Clubs also must decide by 5 PM (Eastern) on 11/6 whether to extend a Qualifying Offer (likely to be about $20M) to any of its Article XX-B free-agents eligible to receive one. (Players extended a QO will have until 11/15 to accept or decline). Cody Bellinger is a lock to receive a QO, and then he will certainly decline (thus providing the Cubs with a 2024 comp draft pick between the 2nd & 3rd rounds if Bellinger signs elsewhere). If he opts-out. Marcus Stroman is not eligible to receive a QO, because he received one previously in his career. 

11/14 is the date when clubs must file off-season reserve lists with the MLB Commissioner. The Rule 5 Draft 38-man AAA rosters will be established at this time. (The reserve list filing date used to be 11/20, but it was moved up beginning in 2022). Rule 5 Draft-eligible players on a club's AAA reserve list can only be selected in the Major League Phase of the Rule 5 Draft ($100,000 draft price with the possibility that the player could be re-claimed later for $50,000), while Rule 5 Draft-eligible players not placed on a club';s AAA reserve list can be selected in the AAA Phase of the Rule 5 Draft for $24,000 with no right to re-claim. (Because the Cubs farm system is so deep, they could end up losing some fairly decent minor leaguers in the AAA Phase this year). 

Rule 5 Draft-eligible players on minor league reserve lists cannot be traded, selected to an MLB 40-man roster, or added to or removed from the organization's AAA reserve list beginning when the reserve lists are filed and extending through the conclusion of the Rule 5 Draft in December. A free-agent who signs a minor league contract or a player who is outrighted off an MLB 40-man roster can, however, be added to the AAA reserve list during this period of time. 

Besides minor league free agent eligibles Luis Vazquez and Yonathan Perlaza, Cubs Rule 5 Draft-eligible minor leaguers most likely to be added to the MLB 40-man roster by 11/14 are C Pablo Aliendo, LHRP Bailey Horn, and RHSP Michael Arias, although conceivably the Cubs might not add any of them to the 40 and just take a chance that they won't get selected (or if any of them are selected, that the Cubs could eventually re-claim the player, as happened with RHP Chris Clarke a year ago).  

Friday 11/17 will be this year's MLB contract tender day. (It used to be December 2nd, but it was permanently moved up to the Friday prior to Thanksgiving last year). Unsigned players on an MLB 40-man roster will be automatically declared a free-agent (and the player's club receives no compensation) if the player is not tendered a contract on that date. A non-tender is the one way to remove a player from an MLB 40-man roster without risking a waiver claim. 

Although a player becomes a free-agent after being non-tendered, nothing precludes a club from re-signing a player to either an MLB or minor league contract after he is non-tendered. Sometimes a club believes it will need a player's 40-man roster slot for an MLB free-agent sometime during the off-season and a pre-emptive non-tender in mid-November is the best method to open up the slot since there is no risk of losing the player off waivers.

Cubs likely non-tender candidates are Nick Burdi, Codi Heuer, Brandon Hughes, and Ethan Roberts (all of whom the Cubs would certainly hope to re-sign to a 2024 minor league contract for "big league money" and with an NRI to MLB Spring Training), with Mark Leiter Jr, Nick Madrigal, Mike Tauchman, and/or Patrick Wisdom possible non-tender (or trade) candidates mainly because they are salary-arbitration eligible, and clubs hate salary arbitration. (Justin Steele, Adbert Alzolay, and Julian Merryweather are also salary arbitration eligible, but they are in no danger of being non-tendered). 


j.triantos is still absolutely destroying AFL...reminder, he's one of the youngest guys there...

90 PA...  .427/.511/.720

3 doubles, 3 homers, 5 triples, 8sb/1cs...mostly playing 2nd/CF

RHP Jeremiah Estrada and INF-OF Jared Young have been sent outright to AAA Iowa, and RHP Nick Burdi has been reinstated from the 60-day IL and has been sent outright to AAA Iowa. 

Burdi and Young both have the right to elect free-agency if outrighted (Burdi has accrued at least three years of MLB Service Time and Young has been outrighted previously in his career), but even if they do not elect free-agency they will both be automatically declared MLB Rule 9 minor league 6YFA at 5 PM (Eaatern) on Monday unless the player signs a 2024 minor league successor contract in the meantime. 

While Estrada does not have the right to elect free-agency after being outrighted, he will be declared an MLB Rule 9 minor league 6YFA on at 5 PM (Eastern) on Monday if he does not sign a 2024 minor league successor contract in the meantime. 

By removing Estrada and Young from the MLB 40-man roster, there will be room on the 40 for both SS Luis Vazquez and OF Yonathan Perlaza if the Cubs wish to add one or both of them to the 40 prior to the 5 PM (Eastern) deadline on Monday, and that's even after the remaining players on the Cubs MLB 60-day IL (Heuer, Hughes, Madrigal, and Roberts) are reinstated. 

(As expected) Cody Bellinger has declined his 2024 player option so the $25M mutual option is negated and Bellinger gets a $5M severance, and the Cubs have declined Brad Boxberger's $5M 2024 club option so the mutual option is negated and Boxberger gets a $800K buy-out, so both players are now Article XX-B free-agents. 

Still no word yet on the Kyle Hendricks $16M club option, the Marcus Stroman $21M player option opt-out ($23.67M AAV), the Drew Smyly $10.5M player option opt-out ($10.25M AAV), or the $6M Yan Gomes club option. 

The deadline for options to be exercised or declined and the deadline for clubs to offer an Article XX-B FA a QO is 5 PM (Eastern) on Monday. 

Obviously Bellinger will get a QO (so that the Cubs will get a 2024 comp draft pick if he signs elsewhere), but since the QO Is $20.325M and he has already declined a $25M salary for 2024, Bellinger will absolutely positively decline the QO.  

So there are now 33 players on the Cubs 40-man roster with four players (Heuer, Hughes, Madrigal, and Roberts) still on the MLB 60-day IL who will need to be reinstated (or traded, outrighted, released, or Designated for Assignment) by 5 PM (Eastern) on Monday, so there will be at least three slots open going forward (even more if the Hendricks and/or Gomes club options are declined, and/or if Stroman and/or Smyly opt-out). 

A couple of other things that happen starting at 5 PM (Eastern) on Monday:

1. Most Injured players (and players rehabbing from an injury) can be sent outright to the minors only during a window that opens on the day after the final game of the MLB regular season up until 5 PM (Eastern) on the 5th day after the final game of the World Series. The exception to this rule is any player on an MLB 40-man roster who did not accrue any MLB Service Time the previous season, is not a Rule 5 Selected Player, and is not a Draft-Excluded player can be sent outright to the minors up until 15 days prior to MLB Opening Day (player can also be optioned tp the minors beginning on the first official day of Spring Training up until 15 days prior to MLB Opening Day). The only three players presently on the Cubs MLB 40-man roster with this exemption are Kevin Alcantara, Ben Brown, and Brennen Davis. Otherwise, in order to remove an injured player (or a player rehabbing from an injury) from an MLB 40-man roster after 5 PM (Eastern) on the 5th day after the final game of the World Series, the player would have to be either non-tendered on 11/18, released, or traded.     

2. A unsigned player on an MLB 40-man roster who does not have the right to elect free-agency if he is outrighted and who would have been declared an MLB Rule 9 minor league 6YFA or second-contract FA if he had been on a minor league reserve list at 5 PM Eastern on the 5th day after the final game of the World Series cannot be sent outright to the minors beginning at 5 PM (Eastern) on the 5th day after the final game of the World Series up until the player has signed a contract for the next season or has had his contract automatically renewed by the club (and unilateral auto-renewals cannot happen until March 1st). Players presently on the Cubs 40-man roster in this class are Miguel Amaya, Javier Assad, Alexander Canario, Jose Cuas, Miles Mastrobuoni, Christopher Morel, and Keegan Thompson. So if the Cubs need a 40-man roster slot sometime during the off-season and one these players is the one the Cubs want to drop from the 40 but the player has not signed his 2024 contract, the Cubs would have to either release the player or trade him. (Jeremiah Estrada was in this class, too, which is why the Cubs had to outright him prior to the 5 PM deadline on Monday and then hope that he would agree to a 2024 minor league successor contract). 

hoerner, swanson, and happ win GG.

david peralta (LF, LAD) got straight up robbed.  hoerner is arguably not the best 2nd from this past season (Kim, SD arguably better), but it's close enough to not complain.  the distance between peralta and happ, though...noticeable.

c.counsell is supposedly leaving MIL for a job with a team that already has a manager, not one of the open positions.  that's...something unexpected.  i wonder how he interviewed under the radar for a team that wasn't publicly looking a new manager.

i got my bet on the yanks because having counsell in town for a mets interview would be decent cover.

it's no secret i'm not a fan of d.ross's lineup management, his love of contact-heavy bench pinch hitting regardless of their lack of power or situation, and his too-short leash on starters leading into a "meh" pen...but i didn't have a new high-end manager on my radar.

the cubs will pay ross + counsell in 2024 before ross's pay comes off the idea what ross is being paid for 2024...

Thank you Crunch.  I was mostly being funny.  No one cares about Smyly right now.  No one is wondering what minor league free agents are going to be added to the roster.  Those were things I was thinking about when I got up this morning, but no more.  It’s all Counsell now.  

But I still hate that Jared Young is going to the Cards.  Hate that.  It would have been better if he had been selected by the Brewers.  Then we could call it a trade.

The Cubs just brought back John Mallee who was in Iowa last year. I wonder what impact this will have on the coaching staff. 

Recent comments

  • Finwe Noldaran (view)

    Arizona P:

    You hit the nail on the head, there's really no major player that we need to do special wheeling and dealing and signing to accommodate a small window while they're in their prime; we need to look at this year as a year of fleshing things out and transitioning/moving into our window of contention, and focus our effort  on extending that window for years and years, not throwing everything desparately at a short window.......

  • Arizona Phil (view)

    If the Cubs do move Matt Shaw to 1st base and don't sign or acquire in a trade any position players or pitchers in the meantime (or at least nobody for more than one year), this could be the Cubs Opening Day lineup in 2025: 

    1. PCA, CF 
    2. Hoerner, 2B 
    3, Happ, LF 
    4. Suzuki, RF 
    5. Shaw, 1B 
    6. Morel/Caissie, DH 
    7. Swanson, SS  
    8. Amaya/Ballesteros, C 
    9. Murray, 3B 

    Canario, OF 
    Mastrobuoni or Vazquez, INF  

    Assad, Brown, Wesneski, Kilian, Powell, Birdsell, or ?  

    L. Little

    Also, Julian Merryweather and Mark Leiter Jr would be under club control (via arb) through 2026 but they are both out of minor league options, and Michael Rucker and Keegan Thompson will be out of minor league options after next season, so their value as shuttle guys would be greatly diminished due to loss of fungibility.  

    James Triantos, Jefferson Rojas, or Pedro Ramirez (2B), Kevin Alcantara (RF), Morel, Caissie, Canario, Brennen Davis, Christian Franklin, or Zyhir Hope (LF), Matt Mervis, Haydn McGeary, or Brian Kalmer (DH), and Assad, Brown, Wesneski, Powell, Birdsell, Jackson Ferris, Drew Gray, Michael Arias, Brody McCullough, Will Sanders, or ? (SP) can replace Hoerner, Happ, Suzuki, and Taillon when their contracts expire after the 2026 season. 

    At least that would be my master plan going forward (very much subject to change, of course), again presuming the Cubs don't sign or acquire any position players or SP or closer who would be signed beyond the 2024 season. 

    The only thing is, if the Cubs did it this way (going in-house rather than signing free agents to lengthy contracts or trading for established players or pitchers), the Cubs would (at least temporarily) probably project as a 70-75 win team in 2024 and would probably be "sellers" at the Trade Deadline, looking to move Kyle Hendricks, Drew Smyly, Yan Gomes, Patrick Wisdom, Nick Madrigal, Mike Tauchman (and probably Merryweather, and Leiter, too), that is unless they can sign free agents or acquire guys who would not be signed beyond 2024 (or at the very least not beyond 2026, when the Happ-Hoerner-Suzuki-Taillon window closes) who might be able to help keep them in playoff contention in 2024. 

    The Cubs farm system is absolutely loaded. There are probably at least a half-dozen small market MLB clubs (KC, OAK, MIA, STL, COL, and MIN) plus the White Sox and the Angels that would kill to have the Cubs minor league system as it presently exists. 

  • Arizona Phil (view)

    If I was the Cubs, I would be working Matt Shaw at 1st base before I'd move Christopher Morel there. A Shaw comp is Steve Garvey (a plus hitter with loud contact and a solid glove but a rag arm). 

    In fact I wish the Cubs had worked Shaw at 1st base at Instructs or assigned him to the AFL to play 1st base, but for some reason he did not attend Instructs and was not assigned to the AFL. 

    If he can learn to play 1st base, Shaw could be in Wrigley by mid-2024, maybe even sooner. 

    Shaw is a first-baseman waiting to happen. 

    And I still believe Christopher Morel will be traded as part of a package to acquire a SP, so that he can play LF (the position scouts say he should play).   

  • Arizona Phil (view)

    The Reds signing Jeimer Candelario should allow them to package two or three of their infielders in a deal for Tyler Glasnow. 

  • Finwe Noldaran (view)


    If he's half as good as how much he made me irritated when the camera would pan to him in the dugout during games while he was playing, we'll be alright............

  • Finwe Noldaran (view)

    Arizona P:

    Totally agree. I was really wanting the Cubs to be sellers, and while hindsight is 20/20, that looks as though it may have been the best option; although, part of the reason they decided not to be sellers may have been what some of the returns we're going to be, so my thoughts are merely speculation based on lack of insight into the specifics of conversations leading up to the deadline. I find myself wanting us to allow the prospects to develop and play meaningful roles on the big league team, as I feel that we have quite a few that will become good if not prayerfully great players, but if we trade them away or sign players to fill their positions in a desperate attempt to contend now, I'm left wondering if approaching this year as a transition year, while giving some prospects time in the minors and then bringing them up to see what we have in them, and maybe looking at next year (2025) as more of a contention point may be the way to go, and may even be a catalyst in the long-term development of the consistency in contending that the franchise needs and letting things happen organically, rather than pressing or trying to control things and making a flurry of moves?

    Irrespective, I think Counsel was a great choice for manager, now we just need to add some charging stations at Wrigley, maybe where the garage was?

  • Finwe Noldaran (view)

    Arizona P:

    Just saw crunch saying Candelario went to the Reds, I also was wanting to avoid the retread market or losing a draft pick.......

  • Finwe Noldaran (view)

    Arizona P:

    Totally agree, I was inferring the latter portion of my comment, and agree with your assessment that it's similar to last year; just headscratching............

  • crunch (view)

    it is taking more than a minute for me to get used to craig counsell being the cubs manager.

    he's going to take the field on opening day at wrigley and get massively cheered.

    that is weird.  that's a thing that's happening, though.

    history aside, while i am horrified at the amount of money they're paying him, i welcome his style of management over what d.ross has given the team.  love d.ross and how chill + ready to deliver he kept the team, but he had a serious pitching short-hook problem that exhausted the pen and some very questionable bench/pinch-hitting use.

  • Arizona Phil (view)

    FINWE N: If you go by what Counsell did with the Brewers, he is much more likely to go with younger players than Ross was. I think part of it was that Ross was a "veteran players manager," meaning he was well liked and respected by veteran players because he was inclined to play them over younger unproven guys. 

    And that actually might have been OK if the Cubs had been "sellers"at the trade deadline (as they clearly had planned to be before suddenly deciding to go fr it), because Ross would have played the veterans a lot the first four months of the season (which would have maximized their trade value), and then Ross would have had no choice but to play the younger guys the last two months after the veterans were traded. 

    But of course it didn't work out that way. 

    One thing about Craig Counsell that might have attracted Hoyer to him is that Counsel is very "collaborative" as a manager and welcomes and even demands lots of input from the analytics department. In fact I have heard tell that Counsell knows at least as much as the geeks know and that he routinely goes to them for information rather than waiting for it to be offered. So think of Ross as a Chevy pick-up truck, while Counsell is a Tesla.