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The Ex-Cub Factor

One in an occasional series following the trials and triumphs of former Cubs.

1. Manny Ramirez.

Manny never played for the Cubs, of course, but he did put in some time as an organizational hitting instructor.

Now he's pursuing a comeback with the Chinese Professional Baseball League in Taiwan.

2. Hee-Seop Choi.

Briefly the hyped successor to Mark Grace, Choi is now a hitting coach for the Kia Tigers of the South Korean KBO League, which is starting up play again because that country has done a bang-up job on the coronavirus crisis while the U.S. has dawdled and frittered tens of thousands of lives away.

Other former Cubs we can watch in the KBO, via NBC Sports Chicago: Dan Straily, Eric Jokisch and Mel Rojas.

Well, Mel Rojas Jr., so we're kind of cheating here, but still.

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Also: Dixon Machado.

3. Jim Edmonds.

The longtime Cardinal icon spent most of the 2008 season with the Cubs, slashing .256//.369/.568 over 85 games after a May release from the Padres.

He recently recovered from COVID-19.

4. Ron Roenicke.

I could've sworn he was once a Cubs coach, but nope! So not even telling you what's up with him.

5. Matt Keough.

I only learned by chance that the former Oakland A's pitcher appeared in 19 games (two starts) for the Cubs in 1986.

Now he's dead.

6. Salty Saltwell.

Also dead.

7. Daniel Murphy.

"Meanwhile Rockies first baseman Daniel Murphy is the latest veteran player to make a sizable financial commitment. He's giving $100K to a 'family assistance fund' to assist minor leaguers who support children or other family members. More on that initiative here."

8. Junichi Tazawa, Chris Volstad.

The Reds released both of 'em.

9. Rafael Dolis.

Released his appendix.

10. Pierce Johnson.

"Pierce Johnson is back stateside [in San Diego] after spending a season in Japan. Statistically speaking, it was a superb season in Japan. In 58 relief appearances for the Hanshin Tigers, the 28-year-old right-hander crafted a 1.38 ERA while surrendering just 34 hits and 13 walks in 58-and-two-thirds innings. He fanned 91.

"Johnson came up through the Chicago Cubs system, earned a one-game cameo in 2017, then went to San Francisco and made 37 appearances for the Giants in 2018."

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Comments welcome.

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