The Chicago Cubs have agreed to terms with outfielder Jon Jay on a one-year contract.
The 31-year-old Jay spent last season in San Diego after getting traded from the Cardinals during the off-season for Jedd Gyorko. In 2016, Jay hit .291/.339/.389 with 26 doubles, two homers and 26 RBI in 90 games. He missed part of the season due to a broken right forearm he suffered on June 19 but did return for the final month.
Originally drafted by the Cardinals in the second-round in 2006 out of the University of Miami, Jay made his MLB debut in 2010 for St. Louis, hitting .300/.359/.422 in 105 games. In six seasons with the Red Birds, Jay appeared in 757 games, slashing .287/.354/.384 while making five post-season trips and logging 58 playoff games.
The versatile outfielder can play all three positions but has spent a majority of his time in center, leading all active players with a .996 fielding percentage in center.
The move may signal the end of the Cubs trying to re-sign Dexter Fowler and it allows the World Series champs to start Albert Almora in AAA, where he can play everyday until he’s needed in Chicago. Starting Almora in Iowa allows the Cubs to keep Matt Szczur on the 25-man roster as he’s out of options and would not likely clear waivers.
The Cubs 40-man roster now stands at 38.