The Minnesota Twins claimed pitcher Jharel Cotton on waivers from the Texas Rangers today, it was announced.
Cotton, 29, is a former top prospect for the Oakland A’s who missed most of the previous three seasons due to Tommy John surgery and then hamstring surgery. He went from the A’s to the Chicago Cubs in November, 2019, but didn’t officially pitch in 2020 for the Cubs before being released in September, 2020.
The Rangers signed Cotton to a minor league deal for 2021, and after a slow start with Round Rock things trended up for the righthander as the season went on. He was brought up to the majors on July 30 and spent the final two months of the season in the Ranger pen, putting up a 3.52 ERA and a 3.72 FIP in 23 relief appearances for Texas.
Cotton showed enough that I imagine the Rangers would have liked to have brought him to camp in 2022, but with a crowded 40 man roster situation and Cotton being both out of options and able to reject an outright assignment, he appeared to be a likely 40 man casualty as the Rangers prepare to re-activate their 60 day injured list players.
The Rangers 40 man roster is down to 33 now, but there are eight players on the 60 day injured list, so at least one more player will have to be waived or traded in the next couple of days. Ronald Guzman, who is currently on the 60 day injured list, and Matt Bush would seem to be the most likely guys to potentially be dropped.