1/9 Cubs reportedly close on Maholm

FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reported Monday the Cubs are close to finalizing a deal for lefty Paul Maholm. He could join a rotation of Matt Garza, Ryan Dempster, Travis Wood, Chris Volstad and Randy Wells. Maholm has spent his entire career with the Pirates, and having another lefty in the rotation would be a plus. The only thing certain is the Cubs are still shopping.

“We’re not finished acquiring starting pitchers,” GM Jed Hoyer said Friday. “We want to have as much depth as possible. At this point, we’re still very much in the process of gathering as many quality arms as we can and we’ll put those pieces in place as we get closer to Spring Training.”

MLB Trade Rumors lists Maholm as the top ground ball free agent pitcher available. The average MLB pitcher induces ground balls about 44 percent of the time; in his career, Maholm has a 52.3 percent rate.

— Carrie Muskat

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