Armed with a bulldog mentality and epic mustache, Andrew Chafin is a huge piece of Cubs bullpen
Andrew Chafin is a vibe.
The mustachioed reliever has quickly endeared himself to Cubs fans with his unique appearance and his success on the mound.
I’ve come here to chew bubblegum and strike you out.— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) April 8, 2021
And I’m all out of bubblegum. pic.twitter.com/jwnsl7EEql
Need more visual proof?
And his intensity is unparalleled.
“The look in his eye when he takes the ball from me on the mound, the way he comes off the mound staring at me like he wants to fight me makes me smile,” a laughing David Ross said.
Chafin has given up just 1 run in his Cubs career, spanning 8 appearances and 6.2 innings. He has also whiffed 8 of the last 10 batters he’s faced, including a pair of Brewers hitters in the series finale Wednesday.
Andrew Chafin has struck out 8 of the last 10 batters he's faced 🔥 pic.twitter.com/x06REq4HSF— Marquee Sports Network (@WatchMarquee) April 8, 2021
The Cubs acquired the veteran left-hander just before the trade deadline last summer but Chafin spent his first few weeks with the team recovering from a finger injury. In February, they re-signed him in a move that flew under the radar but has paid huge dividends for the Cubs bullpen.
Ross loves Chafin’s bulldog mentality and the southpaw has quickly found favor with his new manager. Ross has deployed Chafin in a host of high-leverage situations so far this season, matching up against the heart of the opposition’s order.
“He’s one of the guys that doesn’t shy away from the big moment,” Ross said. “Just a trust factor and somebody that you know can handle any situation that you’re gonna put him in.
“It’s very simple-minded. [He] understands what he does well, understands how to navigate a righty or a lefty in matchup stuff. He keeps it really simple.”
Chafin, 30, was a 1st round pick (43rd overall) of the Diamondbacks back in 2011. He spent his entire professional career in Arizona before last summer’s trade and has quietly been one of the game’s most reliable left-handed relievers in recent seasons.
Since 2017, Chafin has a 3.56 ERA in 244 appearances with 203 strikeouts in 166.2 innings. He also has 61 holds and 1 save over that span.
“He’s been around, been doing it a while in a really tough [division],” Ross said. “It was nice to get him last year. We really liked his stuff and the way he went about competing. He’s a huge piece of our bullpen and he’s got a lot of trust from me in that way.”