Dontrelle Willis is at Spring Training with the Chicago Cubs, the franchise that originally drafted him thirteen years ago. Although it is considered a long shot that Willis manages to make it to the MLB roster, he has apparently been working hard to get back to form and feels good about his chances.
Dontrelle Willis was an outstanding pitcher for a brief time, having his best year in 2005 with the Florida Marlins when he went 22-10 with a 2.63 ERA and finished in second place in National League Cy Young voting to St. Louis Cardinals‘ ace Chris Carpenter. Two years earlier, during his rookie season, he was an All-Star and won the Rookie of the Year Award with a 14-6 record and 3.30 ERA. Unfortunately, Dontrelle Willis was never able to return to his 20 win season form. From 2007 to 2011, his ERA was always higher than 5.00, and injuries prevented him from spending a full season in the MLB from 2008 to 2011, his most recent year in the majors.
Due to the obvious talent Dontrelle Willis once had, the Chicago Cubs signing him to a minor league contract is worth a gamble. At the very worst, it won’t work out and the Chicago Cubs will only be out the cost of a minor league salary. In the best case scenario, the 31 year-old pitcher will get his form back and manage to contribute at the major league level again. Hopefully we’ll see the D-Train get his career back on track and put together his second 20 win season.