The Cubs have agreed to a deal with free-agent reliever Jason Adam, tweets Robert Murray. It’s a minor league pact with an invite to Major League Spring Training, MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian tweets. Adam, who is represented by Platinum Sports, has already passed his physical.
The 28-year-old Adam posted a 2.91 ERA in 21 2/3 innings with the Blue Jays in 2019 but was cut loose in early December. Looking beyond that ERA, however, Adam’s 3.95 FIP and 6.20 xFIP are more alarming. His 18-to-10 K/BB ratio, 25 percent ground-ball rate and .237 average on balls in play all serve as red flags as well. On the flipside of things, the spin rate on Adam’s heater landed in the 98th percentile among MLB hurlers, and he averaged a hearty 94.7 mph on the pitch. He’s also pitched to a combined 2.14 ERA in 42 innings at the Triple-A level across the past two seasons.
If Adam does ultimately make the roster, he has two minor league option years remaining, so he can be shuttled between Chicago and Triple-A Iowa if the team sees fit. He also has less than a full season of Major League service at present, so he wouldn’t even be arbitration-eligible until the 2021-22 offseason at the earliest — and more likely not until the 2022-23 offseason.