Cubs give Harben Minor League deal

Cubs give Harben Minor League deal

CHICAGO -- The Cubs did not tender contracts to pitcher Adam Harben and catcher Jose Reyes by Tuesday's 11 p.m. CT deadline, but did re-sign Harben on Wednesday to a Minor League contract.

Tuesday was the last day for teams to offer 2007 contracts to unsigned players on the 40-man roster. Players not offered contracts, such as Reyes, become free agents.

Harben was the player to be named later in the Cubs' August deal which sent Phil Nevin to the Twins. The right-handed pitcher was 4-9 with a 3.96 ERA in 29 games, striking out 74 over 122 2/3 innings for the Double-A New Britain Rock Cats. He made 22 starts, and one relief appearance, and held right-handed hitters to a .197 average.

Harben also made three starts for the Mesa Solar Sox in the Arizona Fall League, and was 0-1 with a 6.43 ERA.

Reyes batted .250 in 37 games for Triple-A Iowa, with six doubles and 11 RBIs. A switch-hitter, he has a career Minor League batting average of .252.

The Cubs needed to create openings on the 40-man roster for the addition of free-agent pitcher Ted Lilly, who was expected to undergo a physical this week. The Cubs also have reportedly reached agreements with free agents Daryle Ward and Jason Marquis, but neither deal has been completed.

The Collective Bargaining Agreement mandates a club tender a contract for at least 80 percent of what a player earned the preceding season to any player on its 40-man roster not under contract.

The Cubs also have signed pitcher Matt Harrington to a Minor League contract. Harrington was the seventh overall pick in the 2000 First-Year Player Draft by Colorado, but did not sign.

Harrington has spent the last four seasons pitching for the independent Fort Worth Cats. He has pitched for three independent league teams. Harrington was Baseball America's 2000 High School Player of the Year.

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