Cubs add an arm to the bullpen, send down Nelson Velázquez
The Cubs added a fresh arm to the bullpen ahead of Saturday’s game in Los Angeles.
Brandon Hughes was activated off the 15-day IL and will make his 2023 season debut at some point in the next few games. In a corresponding roster move, the Cubs sent down outfielder Nelson Velázquez.
Hughes made his MLB debut in mid-May last season and became one of the Cubs’ most trusted relievers. He posted a 3.12 ERA and 1.09 WHIP in 57 games while notching 8 saves and 8 holds and striking out 28.5% of the batters he faced.
The 27-year-old southpaw becomes the only lefty in the Cubs bullpen and will slot into a high-leverage role. He dealt with a knee injury throughout Spring Training and was placed on the IL to begin the season.
Velázquez hit a go-ahead grand slam in last Tuesday’s epic comeback against the Mariners. He was up for most of the week but appeared in just 2 games, going 3-for-4 at the plate.
The Cubs activated Seiya Suzuki from the IL Friday and he will get everyday at-bats in right field while Cody Bellinger mans center and the recently extended Ian Happ patrols left field.