Samardzija among Cubs' five additions
Reinforcements arrive with high praise for Sandberg
CHICAGO -- Bobby Scales, Jeff Samardzija and Brad Snyder were told to go wait in the trainer's room after the Iowa Cubs' final game Monday. They were joined by Sam Fuld and Justin Berg.All five were feeling down after losing to Memphis, 7-6, which eliminated them from the postseason. Their mood changed when Iowa manager Ryne Sandberg told them they were headed to Chicago to join the big league team. "It was a little bit of a surprise, and I'll take it," Snyder said. "I'm glad to be here. This is a dream come true and my first time in the big leagues and I'm a happy person." The Cubs added the quintet, recalling Samardzija, Fuld and Berg and selecting the contracts of Scales and Snyder, who were not on the 40-man roster. Pitchers John Grabow and Esmailin Caridad were transferred to the 60-day disabled list to make room for Scales and Snyder. "It's tough the way [their season] ended yesterday," Cubs manager Mike Quade said on Tuesday. "I don't care what level, when something ends like that, it's not fun. They're all thrilled to death to be here, and we're glad to have them. I really wish we didn't see them until next week. They had a nice year and are all very deserving and we'll see how we use them." Mark Hamilton hit a solo homer in the ninth inning to lift Memphis to victory over Iowa. Both teams finished with identical records, but Memphis advanced to the playoffs because of a better record against division opponents. Monday was also the last game of the Minor League season for Sandberg, who is a candidate for the Cubs' job. "He had a good solid year and unfortunately they didn't get in," Cubs general manager Jim Hendry said of Sandberg, who was named Pacific Coast League Manager of the Year. "He did a good job." Sandberg's players endorsed him. "He had a steady hand on us all year," Scales said. "He knew his team and he knew his guys, and that's managing. It doesn't matter what it is if it's a team or business, it's managing and I think he had a great handle on us all year." Said Snyder: "Ryno's awesome, plain and simple. Every day, he's the exact same and you know what you're going to get from him. Great guy in the clubhouse also. He doesn't say a whole lot, but he gets his point across and we know what he expects out of us and we get the job done for him." Snyder, 28, active on a Major League roster for the first time in his eight-year professional career, finished with 106 RBIs and 25 home runs at Iowa. A left-handed bat, Hendry said called the outfielder's callup a "well-earned promotion." Scales, 32, was needed with third baseman Aramis Ramirez sidelined with a sore right quad. Ramirez's status is day-to-day and the Cubs wanted another backup infielder. Samardzija, 25, opened the season with the big league team but went 0-1 with a 18.90 ERA in four relief appearances before he was optioned to Iowa. He went 11-3 with a 4.37 ERA with the Minor League team, holding left-handed hitters to a .186 mark. The right-hander could start, but the Cubs do have an overload of starters now. Samardzija had a side session on Tuesday. "A start's in the offing for him, and we'll just have to see," Quade said. Samardzija said he wasn't happy about being sent down in April but realized he needed to be patient. "I started starting after the All-Star break, which was awesome, and got into a great rhythm starting and carried it into the season," he said. "It was tough. You get knocked down and then realize what was going on, and I was fine and it become important to get into a rhythm and be ready to pitch whenever you were called on to pitch." What the future holds for the right-hander remains to be seen. "Jeff's still going to be a good Major League pitcher," Hendry said. "What role he ends up in is not something we stress in September when you're 20 games behind." Fuld, 28, batted .272 with Iowa, while Berg, 26, joins the Cubs for the third time this season. At Iowa, he was 4-1 with a 3.64 ERA in relief. As for Sandberg, he got the endorsement from Samardzija as well. "He was awesome," Samardzija said. "He did everything the same. He got tossed out of some games. He stuck up for his players. I'm not saying any decision needs to be made, I'm not throwing my two cents in, but I had a lot of fun playing for him."
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.