ST. LOUIS – The Chicago Cubs today selected the contract of outfielder Darnell McDonald from Triple-A Iowa and optioned catcher J.C. Boscan to Triple-A. To make room for McDonald on the 40-man roster, outfielder Thomas Neal was transferred to the 60-day disabled list.
McDonald, who will wear uniform number 16, will be available for the Cubs tonight against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium.
McDonald, 34, owns a .246 batting average (175-for-711) with 38 doubles, five triples, 19 home runs and 78 RBI in 306 big league games with Baltimore (2004), Minnesota (2007), Cincinnati (2009) and Boston (2010-12) and the New York Yankees (2012). He saw his most extensive major league action with the Red Sox in 2010, when he batted .270 (86-for-319) with 18 doubles, nine homers and 34 RBI in 117 games. He followed that up with 79 games with Boston in 2011 before combining to play 42 major league games for the Red Sox and Yankees last year.
The right-handed batter and thrower has a .236 batting average (62-for-263) with 13 doubles, four home runs and 26 RBI in 96 games with Iowa this season. McDonald has posted a .333 batting average (18-for-54) in 16 games since the All-Star Break, including a .400 batting average (10-for-25) with two home runs in six games in August. He signed a minor league contract with the Cubs last offseason and was an invitee to big league spring training.
McDonald was originally selected by the Baltimore Orioles in the first round (26th overall) of the 1997 Draft after being rated by Baseball America as the best high school position player. He was the 2002 Orioles minor league player of the year.
Boscan, 33, was recalled from Triple-A Iowa on Thursday and did not appear in a game with the Cubs. He is batting .253 (49-for-194) with nine doubles and 18 RBI in 62 games with Iowa this season.
Neal, 25, was claimed off waivers from the Yankees on Monday and added to the active roster on Tuesday. He went hitless in four at-bats with the Cubs before suffering a dislocated right shoulder on Wednesday.