The Cubs announced Wednesday that they’ve designated right-hander James Norwood for assignment. His spot on the roster goes to catcher Tony Wolters, whose rumored one-year deal with the club has now been formally announced.
Norwood, 27, has spent parts of the past three seasons in the big leagues with Chicago, pitching to a 4.50 ERA through 22 innings with sub-par strikeout and walk percentages (19.6 percent and 13.0 percent, respectively). He struggled in big league camp this spring as well, serving up eight runs (four earned) on eight hits and nine walks with 14 strikeouts through 7 1/3 innings of relief.
Norwood’s heater averages better than 97 mph, and he has a minor league option remaining, which could appeal to another club willing to take a speculative bullpen flier on a live arm. The 2014 seventh-rounder carries a 3.91 ERA, a solid 26 percent strikeout rate and a 10.3 percent walk rate through parts of six minor league seasons.