The Cubs are set to select the contract of veteran right-hander Shane Greene from Triple-A Iowa, reports ESPN’s Jesse Rogers. He adds that outfield prospect Alexander Canario, who’s already on the 40-man roster, will also be recalled for his Major League debut.
Greene, 34, has pitched in the Majors every year since 2014, albeit for just three innings in 2022. The former All-Star reliever experienced a stark dip in performance back in 2021 and has tallied just 26 2/3 innings from 2021-22, posting a 7.09 ERA in that time. He signed a minor league deal with the Cubs earlier in the summer and has since appeared in five games — all of them starts, interestingly — pitching to a 2.16 ERA with a 28.6% strikeout rate and 12.9% walk rate in a still-tiny sample of 16 2/3 innings. The Cubs have built him up since signing, and he’s totaled nine shutout innings with 12 strikeouts against three walks in his past two starts.
Whether Greene is used as a starter or initially added to the bullpen as a long reliever isn’t yet clear. The fact that he’s been starting and is stretched out enough to have thrown five innings in a recent start, however, gives the Cubs some options to consider in the season’s final month.
As for the 23-year-old Canario, he’ll make his big league debut just over two years after being acquired from the Giants in the trade that sent former Rookie of the Year and NL MVP Kris Bryant to San Francisco. While he’s not generally considered to be among the game’s very best prospects, Canario ranks 12th within the Cubs’ system at Baseball America, 14th at MLB.com and 24th at FanGraphs. He draws praise for his impressive raw power, above-average speed and strong throwing arm, but there are also concerns about Canario’s hit tool and penchant for strikeouts.
Shoulder and ankle injuries have limited Canario to 161 plate appearances at the Triple-A level this year, but he’s slashed .276/.342/.524 when healthy. He’s swatted eight homers in that time and popped 37 long balls across three levels (High-A, Double-A, Triple-A) during the 2022 season. However, Canario also fanned in 27.5% percent of his plate appearances last year and has struck out at a 28% clip so far in Triple-A this season.