TODAY: The Cubs have officially announced the move. Alzolay tells 670 The Score’s Bruce Levine and other reporters that he was informed by the team that he’ll be pitching tonight.
YESTERDAY: The Cubs have designated reliever Tim Collins for assignment, per Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times. His 25-man roster spot’s going to promising pitching prospect Adbert Alzolay, who’s coming up from Triple-A Iowa.
The more notable move here is the call-up of Alzolay, a 24-year-old who rates as one of the Cubs’ best farmhands. Now 24, the right-handed Alzolay joined the Cubs as an international free agent out of Venezuela for just $10K in 2012. MLB.com currently ranks Alzolay fourth on the Cubs’ list of prospects and notes the team’s of the belief he could develop into a mid-rotation starter.
Alzolay has thrived this year at the Triple-A level, where he has pitched to a 3.09 ERA/3.10 FIP with 12.94 K/9 and 1.69 BB/9 in six starts and 32 innings. However, even though key starter Kyle Hendricks is on the injured list, the Cubs aren’t planning to have Alzolay join their rotation immediately. He’ll instead back up No. 5 starter Tyler Chatwood, who’s set to take the ball Thursday against the Mets.
Collins, meanwhile, has gone back and forth between Chicago and Iowa since the club signed him to a major league deal in late March. The 29-year-old lefty has thrown 7 2/3 innings this season in Chicago, with which he has allowed three earned runs on nine hits and three walks (with four strikeouts). Collins also owns a 2.12 ERA (with a far less encouraging 5.45 FIP) and 9.53 K/9 against 4.76 BB/9 in 17 Triple-A frames this season.