Cubs release lefty reliever Brothers

Cubs release lefty reliever Brothers

PEORIA, Ariz. -- The Cubs released Rex Brothers on Thursday, doing so now in hopes that the left-handed reliever can find another team before the regular season begins.

In three outings this spring, Brothers gave up three hits, walked three and struck out four over 2 2/3 innings. He also threw four wild pitches in one inning on Sunday against the D-backs.

Spring Training: Schedule | Tickets | More info

"We didn't see him fitting in right now, and we thought it would be most fair to him to get him out there earlier, which would permit him to work out the best deal for him and his family moving forward," Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. "We're just being proactive with that. He struggled with command.

"He's a wonderful young man, a big arm. To hold onto a guy like that until the last week and then possibly set him free is not doing him [as] much good as doing it right now."

The Cubs were hoping Brothers could regain his form from 2013, when he totaled 19 saves and a 1.74 ERA for the Rockies. They avoided arbitration with Brothers by agreeing to a $1.42 million deal for the season, and they will owe him 30 days worth of termination pay, which amounts to $232,786.

"He's searching right now," Maddon said. "I've seen guys like him search before and all of a sudden take off. He's going to land somewhere. He's going to get another opportunity, and hopefully for him and his family, it works well."

With the move, the Cubs' 40-man roster now is at 39, and the spring camp roster is at 63. Maddon said the Cubs will likely make more roster cuts next week.

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.