In 2012, the Cubs needed a rubber-armed veteran to eat up bullpen innings, and Shawn Camp did so adequately. He was the Cubs’ only free agent this year, and we’d already heard that they were likely to re-sign him, and now they have.
The Cubs and reliever Shawn Camp have agreed to a one-year, $1.35 million contract that includes another $200,000 in possible incentives, the team announced Monday. Camp, who was the Cubs’ only free agent, returns to the team after appearing in a career-high 80 relief appearances. He finished tied for the Major League lead in appearances and ranked fifth in the National League with 77 2/3 innings.
I’d be shocked if he makes it through 2013 in one piece, but someone has to go out there and pitch in middle relief. It might as well be Shawn Camp. Shawn Camp is not the only free agent reliever the Cubs have in their sights. Right-handed Kyuki Fujikawa from Japan is said to be sparking the interest of the Cubs and other teams.
Fujikawa, considered among the top closers in Nippon Pro Baseball over the last decade, toured the facilities of Arizona and the Chicago Cubs in the last week. He is expected to also visit with the Los Angeles Angels and Los Angeles Dodgers, both of whom have expressed interest.
Fukijawa, 32, was 2-2 with 24 saves and a 1.32 ERA in 47 2/3 innings this season with Hanshin of the Japan Central League. Fujikawa is considered a power pitcher with a mid-90s mph fastball. He has averaged 11.9 strikeouts per nine innings in his career.
If he’s touring facilities, the Cubs are probably at the bottom of his list. And I can’t see the Cubs offering more than the Dodgers or Angels for a 32-year-old Japanese reliever.
Carrie Muskat has an update for us on the vacant TV analyst job.
According to Comcast SportsNet Chicago, Dan Plesac told WGN on Friday that he’s withdrawing from consideration for the Cubs TV analyst job and will remain at MLB Network. There’s a new name in the mix: Astros broadcaster Jim Deshaies has reportedly interviewed for the Cubs TV analyst job, open after Bob Brenly left to join the Diamondbacks’ TV team.
Also, Doug Glanville is reportedly no longer being considered. The former big league outfielder is reportedly close to an extension with ESPN.
Carrie goes on to report one of his career highlights.
His last game was an abbreviated start on July 30, 1995, at Wrigley Field. He gave up six runs on five hits, including a first inning home run by Todd Zeile and another blast in the second by Jose Hernandez over 1 1/3 innings as the Cubs rolled to an 8-0 win over the Phillies.
And Deshaies has a place in the record books.
Deshaies reportedly holds the Major League record for most at-bats without an extra-base hit (373). Deshaies just completed his 15th season as color analyst for the Astros.
I can’t see Len Kasper letting either of those things go unnoticed should Deshaies get the job.