Cubs Wednesday: Still looking for pitching

We know how the front office of the Chicago Cubs likes to find as many down-on-their-luck pitchers as possible to see how many of them might have some good innings left. The Jason Hammel signing isn’t official, but pending a physical and the Cubs figuring out who to take off the 40-man roster, he’ll be in the mix for the fifth starter. But that hasn’t stopped them from scouting another free agent pitcher.

Maybe the Cubs could import the Kia tiger to be friends with Clark and Yoon.

Maybe the Cubs could import the Kia tiger to be friends with Clark and Yoon.

Korean free-agent pitcher Suk-Min Yoon auditioned for Cubs and Rangers scouts on Tuesday in Arizona, and the client of agent Scott Boras continues to seek a multiyear Major League contract.

The 27-year-old right-hander threw 30 pitches Tuesday, according to MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan. The Orioles already have made Yoon an offer, and the Twins and Giants are believed to be interested as well.

What do we know about Yoon?

Yoon pitched in the Kia Tigers’ starting rotation before a shoulder injury cost him much of the first half of the past Korean Baseball Organization season. He pitched in 30 games, 19 as a reliever, and was 3-6 with a 4.00 ERA and seven saves. In 2011, he was 17-5 with a 2.45 ERA and 178 strikeouts in 172 1/3 innings and won his league’s MVP honor.

Before last season, Yoon was considered the second best starter in Korea, after Hyun-jin Ryu, who was 14-6, had a 3.00 ERA and 1.203 WHIP in 192 innings for the Dodgers last season. He seems like the kind of pitcher the Cubs would go after, but with at least four other teams in the mix, it might not be at the price the Cubs would like.

In case you were wondering, Darwin Barney is still talking about getting better as a hitter this season.

“This year, I took plenty of time off [after the season],” Barney told CSN’s Kelly Crull in a 1-on-1 interview at the Cubs Convention last month. “I needed to rest the muscle memory. I created some bad habits.

“Trying to maybe do too much on the production side rather than finding ways to get on base and get hits. What got me here is the approach I’m going to go back to.”

So what’s he been doing about it?

“The first day, we spent three hours in the cage,” Barney said. “A lot of talking going on about approach and just releasing tension and perfecting the setup and stuff where you’re worrying about the things you can control.”

Is there any doubt he’ll win a Gold Glove¬†and Silver Slugger this season?

11 thoughts on “Cubs Wednesday: Still looking for pitching

  1. Doc Blume says:

    The Nat’s have signed Koyie Hill to a minor league contract.

    Have fun with that, Mark.

  2. johnnywest333 says:

    And Tracy McGrady wants to be a Cub.

  3. juliedicaro says:

    I haven’t commented because a) I have nothing to say and b) I now spend all my time trolling Twitter for hilarious comments about Sochi.

  4. Anonymous says:

    The Olympic torch just made it to Sochi but Vladimir Putin had it put out becuase he thought it was to flaming. :-/

  5. J says:

    Hey, just a thought- is there anyway that we enlightened blog commenters can quit denigrating the Russians and their anti-equality stance through the use of homophobic jokes? I mean, who is the bad guy here- Putin or the Anonymous person making gay jokes? At least Putin puts his name to his hate.

  6. Doc Blume says:

    Barney and the Cubs have reached an agreement and avoided arbitration.

    He’ll probably be the most expensive player on the Iowa roster come June.

  7. johnnywest333 says:

    Sorry I meant to put my name to the Russian joke but I got logged out. Furthemore I am Russian and I still think it’s hilarious and Putin should too.

  8. johnnywest333 says:

    2.3 Million for a .203 batting average makes little sense to me Doc.

  9. johnnywest333 says:

    There are some whispers that the Cubs would consider moving out of Wrigley because they are fed up with the rooftop owners.

  10. Doc Blume says:

    It was right in the middle of the two arbitration numbers that were traded.

    I read some analysis and that actually is about the right price for Barney from a WAR point of view.

    That being said, his days has the Cubs 2nd baseman are numbered. I wasn’t kidding about June. Baez will be called up and Barney will be benched.

  11. Doc Blume says:

    Dan Bernstein reported today that a source he has is saying that the Cubs are now actively exploring the possibility of building a new ballpark and moving out of Wrigley. He also states that he doesn’t completely believe this source and that is might just be a ploy (it obviously is).

    Supposedly, there are two things that are still posing problems. There is one specific rooftop owner who is causing negotiations to come to a complete standstill and the rooftop owners, in general, are not willing to agree not to go to court. Bernstein stated a bit more on the radio about the reasoning against starting the renovations.

    I don’t have any opinion on this…just reporting it. It has resulted in a lot of discussion on Twitter today.

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