Riefenhauser cleared waivers and was outrighted off the 40-man roster Thursday, Carrie Muskat of MLB.com reports. Riefenhauser has some major league experience, but that's about all he has going for him this season. With the I-Cubs, the 26-year-old is sporting a 7.30 ERA through 12.1 innings pitched, leading the Cubs to boot him from the 40-man roster. After no teams claimed him, the left-hander will likely act as organizational pitching depth going forward.
Riefenhauser was optioned to minor league camp on Friday. Riefenhauser will head down to minor league camp after a rough start to spring training in which he allowed two home runs and three earned runs over just 3.2 innings of work. There was some belief that the release of Rex Brothers would help Riefenhauser's chances at making the Opening Day roster, but his struggles on the mound ultimately snuffed out that opportunity. He'll start the year in the bullpen at Triple-A Iowa in all likelihood.
The Cubs released Rex Brothers on Thursday, helping Riefenhauser's long-shot chances of making the Cubs out of camp. He's probably still behind Travis Wood and Clayton Richard on the depth chart, but Riefenhauser and Eric Jokisch are the only other lefty relievers on the 40-man roster. Still, given his lack of success in the majors and the strong Cubs bullpen, Riefenhauser is more likely to begin the year in the minors.
Riefenhauser was claimed off waivers by the Cubs on Friday. The 26-year-old performed well at Triple-A Durham in 2015, producing a 2.86 ERA in 34.2 innings of work. However, Riefenhauser has a career 6.30 ERA in the major leagues while tossing 20 innings between 2014 and 2015. The Cubs already have a solid bullpen in place, meaning if Riefenhauser stays with the club he will likely begin the season in the minor leagues.
Riefenhauser was designated for assignment Thursday. Riefenhauser was traded twice during the offseason, eventually landing with a Baltimore organization that sorely lacks pitching depth. Despite getting DFA'd to make room for Odrisamer Despaigne on the 40-man, the 26-year-old lefty should still have a shot to compete for one of the final bullpen spots on the Opening Day roster.
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