Cubs add Miller as insurance policy

Cubs add Miller as insurance policy

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Cubs added another arm on Monday, signing pitcher Wade Miller to a one-year contract for 2006.

Miller, 29, signed for $1 million with another $1 million possible in incentives based on the number of starts he makes. The right-hander spent much of the 2005 season on the disabled list because of problems with his shoulder but Cubs general manager Jim Hendry said they received good reports on Miller's health.

"This is a very competitive guy and a winning type pitcher," Hendry said Monday. "The doctors felt he was on a track procedure-wise like Kerry [Wood's] but maybe a month behind him. We're not counting on him Opening Day. We're hoping somewhere in the month of May he'll be ready. We felt it was a good guy to have in the inventory."

Miller began last season on the disabled list and was reinstated to the active list on May 8, but returned to the DL on Aug. 9 where he remained the rest of the season. For the season, Miller was 4-4 in 16 starts, totaling 91 innings.

Hendry said he was happy with the pitchers he had on the roster but added, "We felt we would try to add somebody if we could, and still be prepared to make trades during the season."

Miller has gone 62-43 with five complete games and a 3.98 ERA during his Major League career. He has won 10 or more games on three different occasions -- and has posted a .500 or better winning percentage in all but one season. In addition to Boston, he pitched for Houston from 1999-2004.

"This is a guy we've always had respect for," Hendry said of Miller. "Even when he was nicked up, he pitched well."

The Cubs head into Spring Training with Carlos Zambrano, Mark Prior, Greg Maddux, Glendon Rusch and Jerome Williams projected for the rotation. Wood is recovering from arthroscopic surgery on his right shoulder, and could begin throwing off the mound when camp opens in mid-February.

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.