The Cubs have signed right-handed swingman Christian Bergman to a minor league contract, according to Matt Eddy of Baseball America.
The 30-year-old Bergman was a member of the Mariners over the previous two seasons, though he spent the majority of that period with their Triple-A affiliate. Bergman pitched to a 5.00-plus ERA in both the 2017 and ’18 seasons in Tacoma, where he combined for 227 2/3 innings and 42 appearances (41 starts). Overall, Bergman – who’s also a former Rockie – owns a 4.66 ERA with 6.6 K/9 and 2.1 BB/9 in 376 2/3 frames at the minors’ highest level.
While Bergman has seen major league action in each season dating back to his 2014 debut, he had difficulty preventing runs in all five of those campaigns. In 215 2/3 innings, 14 of which came in 2018, the soft-tossing Bergman has managed just a 5.59 ERA/5.09 FIP with 5.43 K/9, 2.04 BB/9 and a 37.1 percent groundball rate.
How does a guy like this even keep getting AAA deals? I mean hey, great for him that’s wonderful he can play the game he loves and I’d be the first to cheer him on if he had some sort of Cinderella story and came out and had a good year. But it just seems like there are guys out there in Independent Ball that never get the chance to play in the minors who would be more promising than Bergman’s 5.00+ ERAs in AAA
But like I said — I wish him all the luck in the world. I’d be his biggest fan if he put things together and came out and did great this season – I just don’t see that happening.
Because AAA rosters need to be filled!
There’s actually a reason it’s Bergman instead of an Indy Ball guy, or a SP gunning for a Double-A rotation spot. Dealing with injuries.
Imagine some 3 year veteran of Indy Ball gets an invite. Regularly throws 87 with two usable pitches. He gets to MLB camp, and tries to throw 93 all of a sudden, and pop. There goes the elbow or shoulder. Now, he needs season-ending surgery, and the team is on the hook for the surgery, and a potential MLB deal, if the injury was in camp, whether on the 40 or not.
Bergman and players like him get the call because they understand who they are. They’re around to take up innings through the end of March, when they get released, and sign a Triple-A deal somewhere. The guys who are getting ready to be starters in the upper-levels of the minors get prepared to do just that.
Spring training games don’t matter. If you want baseball games in February and March, follow college games.
I think Bergman is better than 99.9% of the guys in independent ball and that’s why he gets the call. I don’t think it’s because of the risk of some Indy ball hot shot coming in and blowing his arm out.
Dumpster Divin’ Theo!
How creative! Impressive! Hilarious! Not getting old at all! The Abbott and Costello act of the Chi-guy trolling duo sells out every night! Seriously this and the “depth signing” comment are just out of this world.
We all know you’re trying to take your mind off the inevitable rejection the Sox will be getting from Machado any day now. Can’t wait to see Hahn walk to the podium with his tail between his legs and wax poetic how he thought he was going to be able to sit at the big boy table but won’t get a chance to have nice things after all like the other real teams out there… If trolling the Cubs 40 man roster pickups is really your thing then I guess keep up the incredible originality.
When I read that I saw, in my head, the White Sox as Pinocchio and stamping his feet saying “I want to be a real team”! Well done, sir!
It is not a 40- man roster signing. It is a no-risk minor league deal. It doesn’t even mention a non-roster invitee to Spring Training, though that may be so. No protection, no guarantees, no risk.
Next to “runt of the litter” in the dictionary, is a White Sox fan.
“Runt of the litter” is four words and not in the dictionary.
Apparently, the meaning was over your head? Maybe you should look it up.
Just checked again. It said “no definitions available”. I think it’s because a dictionary is for single words and not phrases. There weren’t any pictures either.
Good addition to compliment young core.
Good signing. Fits right in for the cubbies this year!
Good depth signing
No, it isn’t. Stop trying to act like every move is favorable
not trolling since i’m a brewers fan, but are the cubs really that tight financially?
Only the owners really know, but either that or they’re doing one hell of a job of slow-playing their hand for Harper. Which I don’t see happening unless they can dump part of Heyward’s salary somewhere. Which I also don’t see happening.
I’m a little befuddled with their tactics this year. With the way things have been going I am holding out hope that they’re playing extremely close to the vest. The team though, even without a major signing, only needs to play better offensively with the studs they have and add bullpen depth. The rotation is solid enough to win postseason series, too.
They can’t sign Harper until they find a sucker to take Hayward, Chatwood and Morrow.
Why morrow?? Haha
They can’t keep signing big, 100 mil + contracts EVERY winter. No team can/does. The Cubs will end up with a top 3 payroll in the game. The window to contend is wide open. Most of their young core are just now entering their prime. 4 straight playoff appearances (and counting) inc 3 straight NLCS and a ring already in the bank from this group. The same group that won 95 last year in spite of their closer being on the shelf, their stud FA P being on the shelf, their young MVP being on the shelf and w/ Chatwood being in the rotation for most of the year. KB is healthy now, Yu is healthy, Hamels will be in the rotation all year now, Lester is still Lester and Hendricks is still Hendricks, and any team that boasts Quintana as a 5TH starter has a pretty damn good rotation. Perhaps the best Cub rotation I’ve seen in my lifetime.
So, I’m not even sort of worried about this team. The biggest acquisition I want is good health and this team will once again contend. These ML depth signings are not newsworthy. Basically just stacking the AAA team with insurance due to potential injuries. Most contenders do that.
Exactly right. The Cubs are taking heat this off-season but no one is talking about all the potential this team still has. Certainly if things break right they’re a threat to win 100 games and another WS.
Its just a minor league signing, nothing big. It’s a slow news day and mlbtr seems to love reporting non news about the Cubs so the 4 sox fans and themed can comment since they know nothing about other teams
I love that it’s the exact same trolls who come out for minor league signings every time.
no one seems to realize that finding a Minors deal for an unproven player outrageous has completely no base. who cares if some random guy signes with your team on a minors deal. chanses are most damage he can do is have a few bad games then will be released right out of the organization.
If added on an NRI, the player is required to be given “a legitimate chance to play”. Which means, he’ll be pitching in a MLB spring game.
Bergman might get hit, but he has gotten out MLB hitters before. If a guy is brought in off the street with no MiLB experience, he might get hurt while not getting anyone out.
Yep JD, their obsession is transparent. Who could blame them, no team in the bigs has won more over the last 4 years than Theo’s bunch. If these clowns want to make a big deal over AAA depth signings, cool.
Theos weakness: trying to outsmart the market.
When he has signed players that had consistent histories and you knew what you were getting – he’s been great. When he’s tried to make deals for players based on what he thinks they’re going to do, he’s been spotty.
Great job on Arrieta, Theo – he was an uncertainty, and surprised the baseball world. I’d also say Hamels was a surprising turnaround.
The other sure-thing deals he’s made: Lester, Zobrist, Hammel, Lackey, Chapman, Wade Davis, Cishek, Montero, Jon Jay, Quintana
All of those guys – even if they weren’t great – you knew roughly what you were getting when you dealt for/signed them.
Here’s the guys you didn’t know because of an uncertain past and they might have potential, but didn’t live up to it yet:
Heyward (not terrible – he was young and had several good tools, but overpaid no matter how you look at it and not just in hindsight), Darvish (injury history, playoff struggles), Morrow (injury history), Chatwood (inconsistency), Brett Anderson (injuries)
I’m sure I missed some. However, my point is that I love when Theo doesn’t try to outsmart the market. When he goes after the guys will clean histories and consistent performances – he kills it. When he goes after the high-potential, yet underperforming or questionable guys – it’s not pretty. I think those low-risk-high-reward guys are great when you’re a rebuilding team with little to lose. As a team that should win 90+ games, why are they making moves with so much uncertainty – and they aren’t even low-risk! Morrow and Darvish weren’t low risk moves because you paid market value. Chatwood – I saw the same potential last offseason and I was ok with that deal, BUT so much $ committed to uncertainty. I think it’s time to go back and start going after the guys who have a more consistent past with less injuries on their resume.
Interesting narrative, I see your point. I think it’s that way for everyone though, not just Theo. With Heyward I think he was pretty well known at the time he signed and no one could have accurately predicted what happened. Guys like Morrow and Anderson were gambles but those are the kinds of risk/reward moves that every other team besides maybe Baltimore make if they’re trying to contend or looking for someone to potentially flip at the deadline. Theo gets a lot of attention, warts and all but the guy on the whole is a huge success.
Clickbait Twitter headline that doesn’t mention who they signed because they know no one would click the link if they did.
Theo & Jed know one thing, it’s a l8nf season and between injury and ineffectiveness, you can NEVER have enough arms. I’m sure they don’t expect that they all pan out, but maybe a couple do. They can also flip someone if they have a need! These are the same guys that gave us 2016!
Not sure I’d call Bergman ‘an arm’ at this point. He’s barely a ‘warm body’…
they already have one of the greatest swingmans in the mlb who can eat innings, and that is chatwood. Why do they need Bergman? I mean he will probably be released or most likely be sent down to triple a after spring training
A camp body. If he sticks in AAA, good for him. If he’s lights out and makes the team, even better.