Cubs recall catcher Victor Caratini, DFA veteran Chris Gimenez
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The Cubs on Wednesday morning bolstered their lineup by swapping out backup catchers, recalling switch-hitting Victor Caratini from Class AAA Iowa, who was hitting .313 with an .887 OPS in 32 games since being optioned from the big-league roster in May.
Veteran Chris Gimenez, the one-time personal catcher of Yu Darvish, was designated for assignment to make room for Caratini.
Gimenez was 4-for-28 in 12 games for the Cubs since being called up from Iowa when Caratini went down. He was signed as a minor-league free agent over the winter.
The Cubs have 10 days to trade or waive Gimenez.
“Victor’s been doing really well,” manager Joe Maddon said. “Victor also provides the stability at first base that you like, too. The bat. When we put hi m back behind the plate, we like a lot how Victor catches. And beyond that, the switch-hitting ability – and he’s hitting well.”
He started at first base Wednesday for Anthony Rizzo, who got a scheduled day off.
Caratini, who made his big-league debut last season, made the Opening Day roster this year and hit .262 before his demotion, which was necessitated in part by Gimenez’s contract status, which required a promotion or release near that date.
The Cubs’ 40-man roster is now at 38.
The move comes as the Cubs take a five-game winning streak — tying their season high — into the second game of a two-game series against the Tigers on Wednesday.
They’ve averaged 10.2 runs per game during the streak.
The Cubs entered Wednesday one game behind first-place Milwaukee in the National League Central, with the third-best record in the league (48-35).