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Joe Thatcher | Relief Pitcher | #56

Team: Chicago Cubs
Age / DOB:  (34) / 10/4/1981
Ht / Wt:  6'2" / 230
Bats / Throws: Left / Left
College: Indiana State
Drafted: 2005 / UDFA / MLW
Contract: view contract details
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Cubs signed LHP Joe Thatcher to a minor league contract; assigned him to Triple-A Iowa.
Thatcher signed a minor league deal with the Indians on July 21 but never actually appeared in a game for any of their affiliates. He had a 3.60 ERA and 21 strikeouts in 15 innings with the Dodgers' Triple-A team before that. It's a depth addition for the first-place Cubs, who've had some bullpen troubles lately. Thatcher will still have to pitch well in Iowa to get a shot on the north side of Chicago. Aug 15 - 9:27 AM

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Date:

Indians signed LHP Joe Thatcher to a minor league contract.

The veteran southpaw exercised the opt-out clause in his deal with the Dodgers back in early June and has been looking for a better opportunity since. He registered a 3.86 ERA, 1.29 WHIP and 20/5 K/BB ratio over 14 innings with Triple-A Oklahoma City. Given the struggles in the Cleveland bullpen, he should work his way up to the big league club in relative short order.
Jul 21 - 9:56 PM

Joe Thatcher has exercised the opt-out clause in his minor league deal with the Dodgers.

Thatcher will either have to be added to the Dodgers' roster by Saturday or the team will have to cut him loose entirely. The veteran left-hander has a decent 3.86 ERA, 1.29 WHIP, and 20/5 K/BB ratio in 14 innings this season at Triple-A Oklahoma City.
Jun 2 - 11:56 AM

Dodgers signed LHP Joe Thatcher to a minor league contract.

Thatcher was granted his release by the Indians at the end of spring training when he refused to accept a minor league assignment. The 34-year-old left-hander posted a 3.18 ERA, 1.54 WHIP and 26/12 K/BB ratio over 22 2/3 innings with the Astros in 2015.
Apr 16 - 10:50 AM

Indians released LHP Joe Thatcher.

Thatcher has decided to be a free agent rather than accept a minor league assignment. He'll get a look elsewhere, although he seems likely to begin the season in the minors wherever he winds up.
Mar 27 - 12:44 PM

Joe Thatcher has been told by the Indians that he will not make the Opening Day roster.

Thatcher hasn't decided yet whether he'll accept a minor league assignment. If he doesn't he'll be eligible for a $100,000 retention bonus and would have an opt-out clause on June 1.
Mar 25 - 1:51 PM

Indians signed LHP Joe Thatcher to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Thatcher walked 12 batters in 22 2/3 innings this past season with the Astros, but he still managed a cool 3.18 ERA. It's a bit of a surprise he couldn't find a guaranteed contract in this market. The 34-year-old left-hander should have a decent shot at cracking the Indians' Opening Day bullpen next spring.
Thu, Dec 17, 2015 11:24:00 AM

Astros purchased the contract of LHP Joe Thatcher from Triple-A Fresno.

Thatcher was designated for assignment at the end of July despite posting a decent 3.79 ERA with 22 strikeouts over 19 innings. He'll return in a left-handed specialist role.
Tue, Sep 1, 2015 11:20:00 AM

Astros re-signed LHP Joe Thatcher to a minor league contract.

Thatcher was just released by the club on July 29. The lefty specialist owned a 3.79 ERA with 22 strikeouts over 19 innings and should be back with the big club come September.
Wed, Aug 5, 2015 08:02:00 PM

Astros released LHP Joe Thatcher.

Thatcher was designated for assignment a week ago despite a decent 3.79 ERA with 22 strikeouts over 19 innings this season. He obviously has his limitations as a left-handed specialist, but someone will pick him up.
Wed, Jul 29, 2015 08:40:00 AM

Astros designated LHP Joe Thatcher for assignment.

The move clears a spot for Vince Velasquez on the active roster. Thatcher has struggled a bit recently, but owns a decent 3.79 ERA with 22 strikeouts over 19 innings this season in a specialist role. He could draw interest on waivers.
Tue, Jul 21, 2015 02:35:00 PM

Astros purchased the contract of LHP Joe Thatcher from Triple-A Fresno.

Thatcher pretty much just had to not get hurt in order to make the team, and he cemented his case with a 1.23 ERA this spring. The veteran southpaw will be a lefty specialist.
Mon, Mar 30, 2015 08:32:00 PM

Astros signed LHP Joe Thatcher to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

He'll earn $1 million if he makes the roster (which shouldn't be an issue as long as he's healthy) with an addition $1.3 million available in incentives. Thatcher is a prototypical LOOGY, as he's pitched under 40 innings each of the last five seasons. He's good at what he does, though, boasting a career 3.40 ERA and 244/79 K/BB ratio over 238 innings while holding lefties to a .230/.289/.351 batting line.
Fri, Feb 13, 2015 12:38:00 PM

One source told Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle that they believe the Astros will sign Joe Thatcher to a minor league contract.

However, another source was more "cautious" about predicting Thatcher would sign with Houston. It's hard to believe the lefty reliever would have to settle for a minor league deal, as Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish reported earlier Thursday that Thatcher was in talks with 10-plus teams. He held a 3.86 ERA and 27/4 K/BB ratio in 30 1/3 innings last season.
Thu, Feb 12, 2015 09:31:00 PM

According to Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish, free agent Joe Thatcher is in talks with 10-plus clubs, including the Mets, Astros, Athletics, and Rangers.

Thatcher is expected to settle with a team soon. The 33-year-old left-hander posted a cool 3.86 ERA and 27/4 K/BB ratio in 30 1/3 innings last season between the Diamondbacks and Angels. With so much interest, he shouldn't have to settle for a minor league contract.
Thu, Feb 12, 2015 02:44:00 PM

Depth Charts

Batters
PosRoleName
C1Willson Contreras
2Miguel Montero
3David Ross
4Tim Federowicz
1B1Anthony Rizzo
2B1Ben Zobrist
2Tommy La Stella
SS1Addison Russell
2Munenori Kawasaki
3B1Kris Bryant
2Javier Baez
3Christian Villanueva
LF1Kyle Schwarber
2Jorge Soler
3Chris Coghlan
CF1Dexter Fowler
2Matt Szczur
3Albert Almora
RF1Jason Heyward
Starting Pitcher
PosRoleName
S1Jake Arrieta
2Jon Lester
3John Lackey
4Jason Hammel
5Kyle Hendricks
6Aaron Brooks
7Dallas Beeler
Relief Pitcher
PosRoleName
R1Aroldis Chapman
2Hector Rondon
3Pedro Strop
4Mike Montgomery
5Joe Smith
6Trevor Cahill
7Carl Edwards Jr.
8Travis Wood
9Justin Grimm
10Zac Rosscup
11Rob Zastryzny
12Felix Pena
13Jake Buchanan
14Spencer Patton