Cubs roster changes for April 16

DENVER –The Chicago Cubs today selected right-handed pitcher Mark Leiter Jr. from Triple-A Iowa. In corresponding moves, infielder Alfonso Rivas was picked for Iowa after last night’s game and right-handed pitcher Cory Abbott was slated for assignment.

Additionally, left-handed pitcher Locke St. John was selected to the 40-man roster and optioned to Iowa while outfielder Greg Deichmann was slated for assignment.

Leiter, who will wear uniform number 62, will start tonight for the Cubs in their 6:10 p.m. MT game against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.

Leiter, 31, has made one appearance for Iowa so far, allowing an earned run in 4.0 innings with a walk and seven strikeouts on April 8 at Buffalo. He entered the season having allowed an earned run in 9.2 innings spanning four spring training appearances after signing a minor league contract with the Cubs in December of last year.

The six-foot-tall Leiter in 2021 signed a minor league contract with Detroit and combined to go 10-8 with a 3.77 ERA (48 ER / 114.2 IP) in 25 games (19 starts) with Double -A Erie and Triple-A Toledo in his first action since 2018. He averaged 11.4 strikeouts per 9.0 innings thanks to 145 strikeouts in 114.2 innings on 31 walked that contributed at a WHIP of 1.07.

Leiter was claimed waivers by Toronto on September 1, 2018, then underwent Tommy John surgery on March 12, 2019, missing the 2019 campaign. He signed a minor league contract with Arizona for the 2020 season, which been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Leiter is 3-7 with a 5.53 ERA (70 ER/114.0 IP), 43 walks and 106 strikeouts in 47 major league games (11 starts) with Philadelphia (2017-18) and Toronto (2018). Leiter made his major league debut with the Phillies in 2017, going 3-6 with a 4.96 ERA (50 ER/90.2 IP) in 27 games, including 11 starts.

Selected by Philadelphia in the 22nd round of the 2013 New Jersey Institute of Technology draft, Leiter holds a 42-33 record with a 3.49 ERA (241 ER/622.1 IP) in 149 career minor league games, including 94 starts.

St. John, 29, was assigned to minor league camp on March 25 after receiving an off-roster invite to spring training with the Cubs. He made three relief appearances for Iowa this season, recording a 6.23 ERA (3 ER/4.1 IP).

St. John made his major league debut with Texas in 2019 with seven relief appearances. Last season, he appeared in 36 games (five starts) with Triple-A Toledo in the Detroit system and went 4-0 with a 2.58 ERA (17 ER/59.1 IP), allowing 53 hits, 25 walks and 75 batters on strikes. .

The six-foot-three St. John was selected by Detroit in the 32nd round of the 2014 University of South Alabama draft. In 194 minor league games (51 starts), he is 27-33 with 11 saves and a 3.47 ERA (188 ER/437.2 IP) with 179 walks and 468 strikeouts.

Rivas, 25, made his first career formation on Opening Day with Chicago and is 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI in two games this season.

Abbott, 26, has thrown a 4.50 ERA (3 ER/6.0 IP) in two starts with Triple-A Iowa this season. He made his major league debut last season and compiled a 6.75 ERA (13 ER/17.1 IP) in seven appearances (one start) for the Cubs.

Deichmann, 26, has a .207 batting average (6 for 29) in eight games with the I-Cubs this year. He made his major league debut with the Cubs last season, batting .133 (4 for 30) with one RBI in four games.

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