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Cubs exercise $10.5M option on Jose Quintana, claim Jerry Vasto off waivers

As expected, the Cubs on Wednesday exercised their $10.5 million option on left-hander Jose Quintana.

In 2018, Quintana matched a career high in wins, going 13-11 with a 4.03 ERA in 32 starts.

The Cubs acquired Quintana, who turns 30 in January, in a blockbuster trade with the White Sox on July 13, 2017. In exchange for the Colombian pitcher, the Cubs dealt top prospect Eloy Jimenez and pitcher Dylan Cease along with two other prospects to their crosstown rivals.

In 2014, the Sox had signed Quintana to a five-year deal with two team options. The Cubs will have an $11.5 million option on him for the 2020 season.

Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jose Quintana (62) delivers during the first inning of a tie break baseball game against the Milwaukee Brewers on Monday, Oct. 1, 2018, in Chicago. | Matt Marton/Associated Press

The Cubs also made a small move, claiming left-hand reliever Jerry Vasto off waivers from the Kansas City Royals.

Turning 27 in February, Vasto stumbled in his major-league debut last season with the Colorado Rockies. He pitched two-thirds of an innings with a 40.50 ERA. Shortly after, Vasto was traded to the Royals for catcher Drew Butera. With the Royals, he pitched 3⅔ innings in five games and finished with a 2.45 ERA.

After the Cubs declined the $10 million team option for right-hander Brandon Kintzler, the reliever picked up the $5 million player option.

The Cubs have decisions pending this week on 2019 club options for pitchers Cole Hamels ($20 million) and Pedro Strop ($6.25 million). Both are expected to be back with the Cubs.