Chicago Cubs news and notes: Michael Bowden, Cole Gillespie, Brooks Raley

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This Chicago Cubs news and notes column is a collaboration between Paul M. Banks and the newest member of The Sports Bank family Jeremy Harris

-Michael Bowden was designated for assignment by the Cubs to allow Carlos Villanueva to join the bullpen and Matt Garza the rotation. The decision on whom to designate came down to Bowden, who at the time had a respectable ERA of 3.78 or former Cubs RH Shawn Camp, whose ERA was nearly double that number. After not being traded during the ten-day DFA period, Bowden opted to return to the Cubs AAA team, Iowa, instead of electing free agency.

Then off the 40-man roster, Bowden never publicly criticized the move and put together a dominant stretch for the Iowa Cubs. He produced a 2.48 ERA in 13 appearances covering 18 2/3 innings, yielding 14 hits, walking only 3 and fanning 28. That professionalism and pitching prowess earned him a promotion back to the Cubs today. Bowden is one of two pitchers acquired by the Cubs last season for Marlon Byrd, and I hope he establishes himself as a valuable asset. Bowden was acquired by the Cubs from the Red Sox for outfielder Marlon Byrd on April 21, 2012. He is a 2005 graduate of Waubonsie Valley High School in Aurora, Illinois and was originally selected by the Red Sox in the supplemental round (47th overall) of the 2005 Draft.

With Iowa, Bowden posted no record, two saves and a 2.41 ERA (5 ER/18.2 IP) in 13 relief appearances. The righthander struck out 28 batters and walked only three in 18.2 innings, an average of 13.5 strikeouts and only 1.4 walks per nine innings.

-Cole Gillespie off waivers from the San Francisco Giants. He has not yet reported to the major league club. He was originally selected in the third round of the 2006 Draft by the Milwaukee Brewers and made his big league debut with the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2010, appearing in 45 games. He has spent most of the last three seasons in Triple-A in the Diamondbacks and Giants organizations. Gillespie batted .308 with 35 doubles, four triples, 13 home runs, 66 RBI, 85 runs scored and an .884 OPS in 126 games with Arizona’s Triple-A Reno affiliate last season. He went hitless in nine big league at-bats before being designated for assignment on July 9.


Gillespie is a career .218 hitter (26-for-119) with eight doubles, three home runs and 16 RBI in 53 big league games with Arizona (2010-11) and San Francisco (2013). Gillespie earned minor league All Star honors in 2007 and 2008 and received the Rawlings Minor League Gold Glove Award in 2011. He is a career .289 hitter (847-for-2,927) with 174 doubles, 48 triples, 89 home runs and 460 RBI in 846 minor league games.

Gillespie attended Oregon State University, where he was a teammate of Cubs second baseman Darwin Barney. The duo helped lead the Beavers to the 2006 National Championship.


Brooks Raley made his 2013 debut with the Cubs last night and allowed two runs in 4.1 innings of relief (4.15 ERA). He is 6-6 with a 4.91 ERA (48 ER/88.0 IP) in 17 appearances (16 starts) with Iowa this season.

Paul M. Banks is the owner of The Sports, an affiliate of Fox Sports. He does a radio spot twice a week for 95.7 The Fan. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook

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