McFarland fired a scoreless eighth inning during which he issued a walk and recorded a strikeout in a win over the Cubs on Thursday. The veteran left-hander has quickly taken to his new digs, putting together three straight scoreless appearances and notching a win in addition to Thursday's hold. McFarland has already made four trips to the mound in less than a week with the Cardinals, which would seem to bode well for fantasy managers who've taken a flyer on him in formats that value setup men.
McFarland (1-0) won Wednesday's 3-2 extra-inning contest with the Cubs, pitching a scoreless 10th while allowing a walk. After John Gant permitted a Javier Baez single to lead off the 10th, McFarland entered and induced a momentum-killing double play followed by an intentional walk and a flyout to neutralize the threat. When St. Louis scored in the bottom of the inning, the lefty became the winner. This was McFarland's first win of the season in only his third appearance.
McFarland's contract was selected by the Cardinals on Friday. McFarland joined the Cardinals on a split contract at the end of June. He'll give the team another left-handed option out of the bullpen, but he's unlikely to be of much interest in most fantasy formats. It would be a surprise to see him pitching in high-leverage innings, and he gets very few strikeouts, whiffing 13.6 percent of opposing batters over the course of his eight-year career.
McFarland agreed to a split contract with the Cardinals on Wednesday, Jesse Dougherty of The Washington Post reports. The 32-year-old was granted his release by the Nationals earlier Wednesday, and he apparently had a deal with the Cardinals lined up. McFarland struggled in 18 appearances at Triple-A Rochester with a 5.25 ERA, 1.17 WHIP and 26:5 K:BB over 24 innings. He'll report to Triple-A Memphis for his new organization.
Washington granted McFarland his unconditional release from his minor-league contract Wednesday. Jesse Dougherty of The Washington Post speculates that McFarland asked for his release after the Nationals bypassed the lefty for a call-up earlier this week in favor of another southpaw reliever at Triple-A Rochester in Kyle Lobstein. McFarland made 18 appearances out of the Rochester bullpen, posting a 5.25 ERA and 1.17 WHIP across 24 innings.
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