The White Sox just sent out a note saying they have signed reliever J.J. Putz for one year and $3 million. I guess the Cubs can cancel that session they had for today in Arizona to watch Putz throw.
Arthroscopic elbow surgery to clean out bone chips shut Putz down in June of this year, when he was with the Mets. He was 1-4 with a 5.22 ERA and a high WHIP of 1.64. Bill James projects better things for Putz in 2010: 52 games, 4-2 record with a 3.00 ERA and 1.20 WHIP. We'll find out more later today from Kenny Williams.
Covering the Cubs, as I do, it's fun to sit with Kenny at the winter meetings. His approach is unique. He exudes confidence. He hates media leaks. He's got a good sense of humor. He'd be fun to cover.
Speaking of our friends on the North Side, they made official what I reported yesterday, that they've acquired former Sox minor-league pitcher Arismendy Mota from the Nationals for cash considerations. The Nats took Mota from the Sox with the first pick of the Triple-A Rule 5 draft yesterday morning.
Tomorrow is the date by which clubs must decide whether to tender contracts to the players under their control. I expect the Cubs to do so with everyone but Neal Cotts. The Cubs will non-tender him but ask him back on a minor-league deal with an invite to spring training as Cotts rehabs from elbow surgery.
Those players with between three and five years of big-league service time who get tendered deals are eligible for salary arbitration, as is "Super 2s" Mike Fontenot and Tom Gorzelanny.
Carlos Marmol and Ryan Theriot are the Cubs biggest potential arb cases. Koyie Hill, Sean Marshall, Jeff Baker and Angel Guzman are the other arb guys. That's a lot for one off-season, isn't it?
Haven't seen any new Twitters on Milton yet, but the day is young.