Cleat Geeks

Wrigley Weekly Wrap-up

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The Cubs and Jake Arrieta avoid arbitration with a record deal. They agreed to a $10.7 million contract for 2016, the highest-ever single-season contract for a pitcher with four years of MLB service time. Arrieta is coming off a Cy Young winning season, in which he pitched to a 1.77 ERA, a 4.92 K/BB ratio in 229 innings, and finished with a 22-6 record for the Cubs. He was rewarded with a $7.07 million raise. The settlement was $450,000 above the midpoint of the arbitration numbers exchanged by the sides on January 15th. Arrieta asked for $13 million and the Cubs offered $7.5 million.

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Kris Bryant is spending his last few weeks before spring training swimming with the sharks. The Cubs third baseman is enjoying a vacation with his fiancée in Hawaii. Bryant posted a video on his Instagram account that features at least three sharks very close to the NL Rookie of the Year. Thankfully, he is in a protective cage.

020416-MLB-Matt-Murton-PI.vresize.1200.675.high.72In 2004, the Cubs acquired Matt Murton as part of the deal that brought Nomar Garciaparra to Chicago from the Red Sox. The general manager at the time in Boston happened to be Theo Epstein. Now 12 years after trading him, it appears the current Cubs president is ready to give the outfielder another chance in Chicago. According to reports in Japan, the team has signed Murton to a minor league deal. He has been playing in Japan since 2010 with the Hanshin Tigers of Nippon Professional Baseball. Murton was in the Cubs organization from 2004-2008, appearing in 308 games, hitting .294 with 28 home runs and 104 RBIs. He was traded half way through the 2008 season to the Oakland Athletics.

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