Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Cubs release nine

Cubs trimmed their minor league ranks by releasing nine players from minor league camp on Saturday.

As the minor league season openers draw near, the Cubs released nine players, including relief pitcher Matt Brazis, acquired in a trade from the Mariners before the 2015 season. Former Midwest League All-Star Jordan Hankins and 2013 8th round pick Sam Wilson were among the recent cuts. 

Nick Greenwood, LHP—Signed as a free agent during the off-season, the 28-year-old spent seven years with the Cardinals as  starter and was in the mix for a job in the Iowa rotation.

Matt Brazis, RHP—Acquired from the Mariners for OF Justin Ruggiano during ’14 off-season, the 26-year-old reliever missed three months last year with an arm injury, appearing in 12 games in AA (13.2 IP, 16 BB 12 K).

Jordan Hankins, IF/C—A Midwest League All-Star third baseman in 2014, Hankins hit .322/.361/.461 in 50 games for Kane County and earned a promotion to Daytona. Last year the Cubs moved Hankins to catcher and he batted .227/.316/.348 in 23 games in Myrtle Beach, nine starts behind the plate. The 24-year-old was the Cubs 11th round pick in 2013 out of Austin ePay.

Santiago Rodriguez, RHP—The 21-year-old dominated hitters in the Dominican Summer League in his first pro season in 2014 (8-1, 1.67 ERA, 71 K 13 BB, 81 IP ) and was named to the all-star team. An injury limited him to only 12.2 inning last year in Mesa.

Sam Wilson, LPH—The Cubs 8th round pick in 2013 out of Lamar Community College, the 24-year-old spent three years in the Cubs system and threw 19.2 innings out of the bullpen for South Bend, the highest level he reached. In 84 pro innings, all in relief, Wilson was 9-3 with a 3.96 ERA, 88 K and 33 BB.

Matt Clark, 1B—Signed right before during spring training, Clark went 4-for-12 in nine games for Cubs after spending 2015 with the Brewers organization. Clark release paves the way for Daniel Vogelbach to start year in AAA.

Donnie Cimino, IF—The Cubs 37th round pick last June, the 22-year-old hit .217/.284/.233 in 20 games in the Arizona Rookie League after turning pro.

Austyn Willis RHP—The Cubs 18th round pick in 14' out of high school in California, the 6-foot-6, 19-year-old made nine starts last summer in the Arizona Rookie League, going 3-3 with a 3.54 ERA in 44.1 innings and a 1.31 WHIP. 

Heath Dwyer, LHP—An undrafted free agent signed last year out of VCU, Dwyer appeared in 12 games between Eugene and Mesa, throwing 21 innings with a 3.43 ERA in his only season with Cubs.

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