The Cubs released Souza on Tuesday. Souza went unclaimed off waivers after the Cubs designated him for assignment over the weekend, but the 31-year-old outfielder will pursue opportunities elsewhere rather than stick around at Chicago's alternate training site. Before being dropped from the 40-man roster, Souza appeared in 11 games and hit .148 with one home run across 27 at-bats.
Souza was designated for assignment following the first game of Saturday's doubleheader against the Cardinals, Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune reports. Souza got the start in Game 1, but he went 0-for-2 and saw his average on the season drop to .148, and that apparently led the Cubs to take him off the roster. It remains to be seen what Souza's next move will be, but he will need to clear waivers for the Cubs to have any chance of retaining him.
Souza is starting in left field and batting eighth in the first game of Saturday's doubleheader against the Cardinals. With Kyle Schwarber slotting in as the designated hitter, Souza will patrol left field. The 31-year-old has played in just 10 games this year after missing some time due to a hamstring strain, and he finds himself in an even more crowded outfield these days with Cameron Maybin coming over at the trade deadline. Expect Souza to retreat to the bench for the second game Saturday.
Souza (hamstring) could return to the active roster as early as Tuesday, Sahadev Sharma of The Athletic reports. Souza ramped up his workload over the weekend while dealing with a Grade 1 hamstring strain. As a result, he could be available for the Cubs during the team's series in Pittsburgh. Once he returns from the injured list, he should continue to serve as outfield depth. He'll have even more competition for playing time after the Cubs traded for Cameron Maybin on Monday.
Souza (hamstring) reported to the Cubs' alternate training site and took five at-bats Friday without issue, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports. It's not clear when Souza will be ready to rejoin the Cubs, but manager David Ross did say he is "trending in the right direction."