MINNEAPOLIS – The Chicago Cubs today placed infielder Nico Hoerner on the 10-day injured list (retroactive to May 9) with a left hamstring strain and recalled infielder Miles Mastrobuoni from Triple-A Iowa. Additionally, left-handed pitcher Brandon Hughes has been activated from the 15-day injured list and right-handed pitcher Javier Assad has been optioned to Iowa.
Mastrobuoni, 27, made Chicago’s Opening Day roster and hit .200 (4-for-20) with a double, RBI and stolen base in eight games before he was optioned to Iowa, April 14. In 18 games with the I-Cubs, he is batting .291 (16-for-55) with five doubles, two triples, six RBI and 22 walks, compared to 18 strikeouts, contributing to a .494 on-base percentage and a .948 OPS. Since April 26, the left-handed hitting Mastrobuoni has reached base safely in 10 of 11 games.
The five-foot, 10-inch Mastrobuoni was acquired from Tampa Bay in November 2022 for minor league right-handed pitcher Alfredo Zárraga. He spent a majority of 2022 with the Triple-A Durham Bulls, hitting .300 (152-for-507) with a .377 on-base percentage, 32 doubles, 16 home runs, 64 RBI and 23 stolen bases in 129 games. His performance led to a September call-up with the Rays, in which he made his major league debut, appearing in eight games with a .188 average (3-for-16) and a stolen base.
Selected by Tampa Bay in the 14th round of the 2016 draft out of the University of Nevada, Reno, Mastrobuoni has batted .286 (649-for-2,266) with 113 doubles, 25 triples, 29 home runs, 248 RBI and a .768 OPS in all or part of seven minor league seasons with the Rays (2016-22) and Cubs (2023) organizations. During his minor league career, has seen time at second base (262 games), left field (110 games), right field (94 games), shortstop (82 games), center field (42 games, third base (38 games) and designated hitter (one game).
Hughes, 27, was placed on the 15-day injured list April 29 (retroactive to April 27) with left knee inflammation. He is 0-1 with a 3.18 ERA (2 ER/5.2 IP) in five games out of the bullpen for the Cubs in 2023 as he opened the season on the injured list with left knee inflammation before being activated April 15.
The six-foot two-inch Hughes made his major league debut with the Cubs in 2022 after starting the campaign with High-A South Bend. In 57 relief appearances for Chicago, he was 2-3 with a 3.12 ERA (20 ER/57.2 IP), eight saves, eight holds, a 1.09 WHIP and a .200 opponent batting average. He ranked second among Cubs relievers in games pitched and third in saves and strikeouts (68). Hughes held right-handed hitters to a .183 average while left-handed batters hit .226.
Selected as an outfielder in the 16th round of the 2017 First-Year Player Draft out of Michigan State University, Hughes transitioned to the mound in 2018. In 59 minor league relief appearances heading into 2023, he posted a 1.96 ERA (20 ER/92.1 IP) with four saves, 31 walks and 124 strikeouts, good for an average of 12.09 strikeouts per 9.0 innings.
Hoerner, 25, is batting .303 (46-for-152) with six doubles, one triple, two home runs and 19 RBI in 35 games for Chicago in 2023 prior to leaving Monday night’s game vs. St. Louis with a left hamstring injury.
Assad, 25, is 0-2 with a 5.09 ERA (10 ER/17.2 IP) in five games (one start) for Chicago, including a 1.74 ERA (2 ER/10.1 IP) in his last two relief appearances starting May 4.