After signing All-Star closer Craig Kimbrel to a 3-year, $46 million deal earlier this month, the Cubs’ new closer is finally on his way to Wrigley Field.
The 31-year-old pitcher signed with the Cubs on June 6th after an extended wait that left the seven-time All-Star waiting to sign a deal until nearly halfway into the season. The reason for this was the fact that the team that signed him would’ve had to give up a first-round draft pick had they done so before this year’s draft.
So, despite the strange wait, and after 4 “warm-up” appearances with the AAA Iowa Cubs, Kimbrel has deemed ready for action and is on his way to the big league club.
Kimbrel, formerly of the Atlanta Braves, San Diego Padres, and Boston Red Sox, will immediately step in as Chicago’s closer. The Cubs, the owners of a slim one-game lead over the Milwaukee Brewers in the NL Central, hope that his addition will bolster a bullpen that has already been one of the stronger units in baseball this season.
The Cubs’ relievers have combined to post a 3.90 ERA, good for 7th in the MLB, and that number should only improve with the addition of their new closer, the owner of a career 1.91 ERA and 333 saves.