Brandon Kintzler

In process of retooling bullpen, Cubs have reportedly shown interest in Brandon Kintzler


In process of retooling bullpen, Cubs have reportedly shown interest in Brandon Kintzler

A guy Cubs hitters saw in the playoffs this year might be a candidate to join the North Side bullpen.

According to a report from Jon Morosi, the Cubs have shown interest in free-agent reliever Brandon Kintzler.

The Cubs just saw Kintzler in their National League Division Series against the Washington Nationals, the 33-year-old righty appearing in three games during that five-game series. They tagged him for a couple runs over his 3.1 innings of work, scoring a run apiece in Games 3 and 5.

Cubs fans might also remember Kintzler as a longtime Milwaukee Brewer. He pitched for the Cubs' I-94 rivals for six seasons before heading to the Minnesota Twins ahead of the 2016 campaign. He was dealt from the Twins to the Nationals at the July 31 trade deadline earlier this year.

Kintzler worked as the Twins' closer in 2016 and 2017, picking up 45 saves and finishing 77 games. In the last two seasons with the Twins and Nationals, he posted a 3.08 ERA in 125.2 innings of work. His best season in Milwaukee came back in 2013, when he had a career-best 2.69 ERA in a career-high 77 innings.

The Cubs are in the process of retooling their bullpen, though as of right now, it's unknown how things will look come Opening Day. Most notably, closer Wade Davis is on the free-agent market. So too is Brian Duensing. The Cubs opted not to tender a 2018 contract to Hector Rondon last week. And they have considered Brandon Morrow, one of the most prominent free-agent relievers, an option to close.

According to ESPN's Jesse Rogers, the Cubs were interested in a pair of relievers who signed with teams this week: Miles Mikolas, who went to the St. Louis Cardinals, and Mike Minor, who signed with the Texas Rangers.

As for guys who figure to be in the mix, the Cubs added free-agent reliever Dario Alvarez last week. Pedro Strop and Carl Edwards Jr. remain under contract, as does Mike Montgomery, who might or might not wind up in the starting rotation. Contracts were tendered to Justin Grimm and Justin Wilson.