The Cubs announced they’ve placed right-hander Ryan Tepera on the 10-day injured list with a left calf strain and optioned right-hander Trevor Megill to Triple-A Iowa. Righty Tommy Nance was recalled from Iowa, while southpaw Adam Morgan was selected to the big league roster. To create 40-man roster space for Morgan, infielder Matt Duffy was transferred from the 10-day to the 60-day injured list.
Tepera has been quite productive this season. Through 37 2/3 innings, the righty has worked to a 3.35 ERA/3.28 SIERA. He’s punched out a strong 28.3% of opposing hitters- his second consecutive season missing plenty of bats- against a solid 8.3% walk percentage. Tepera has been a key piece of a Cubs bullpen that has surprisingly been one of the game’s best. Chicago relievers have a 2.95 ERA that trails only the Padres’ 2.85 mark, and they’re also near the top of the league in strikeout rate (29%), strikeout/walk rate differential (17 percentage points) and SIERA (3.67).
Morgan will try to emulate that work in his first taste of big league action this year. The 31-year-old pitched in the majors each season between 2015-20 with the Phillies, and he’ll now get an opportunity for a seventh straight campaign. While Morgan was generally underwhelming early in his career as a starting pitcher, he proved fairly effective upon a move to the bullpen. He has a 4.07 ERA/4.22 FIP with decent strikeout and walk numbers (25.5% and 9.1%, respectively) in 150 1/3 career innings as a reliever.
Unfortunately, Morgan was forced to undergo flexor tendon surgery last October. The Phillies outrighted him and he signed a minor league deal with the Cubs in January. He’s been fantastic over 16 1/3 innings with Iowa, working to a 2.20 ERA with a 32.3% strikeout rate and a 4.6% walk percentage.
Duffy went on the IL with a low back strain on May 23. Today’s transfer rules him out for sixty days from the date of his original IL placement, so he won’t return until at least July 22. The 30-year-old infielder has hit a solid .278/.377/.356 through 106 plate appearances this season.