SAN DIEGO -- Once a top relief prospect in the Cardinals' organization, Eduardo Sanchez was claimed off waivers by the Cubs on Tuesday. It ended the right-hander's eight-year tenure with St. Louis, which signed him as a non-drafted free agent out of Venezuela.
In order to clear a spot on the 40-man roster for Tyler Lyons, who will start for the Cardinals on Wednesday, the organization chose to remove Sanchez. That required the Cardinals to place the 24-year-old right-hander on waivers, and when they did, the Cubs snatched him.
Sanchez gave the Cardinals' bullpen a lift in 2011, when he came up and allowed just six earned runs over 30 innings. Over the past two seasons, however, Sanchez struggled with the consistency of both his delivery and his pitches. He appeared in only 17 games for the Cardinals in 2012 and posted a 6.60 ERA in 15 innings. He was pitching for the club's Triple-A affiliate this year.
Sanchez also has been on the disabled list with an arm injury at least once in each of the past three seasons.
"We talked about him for a number of years about having some of the best swing-and-miss stuff in the organization with an electric slider," manager Mike Matheny said. "But he just had trouble repeatedly staying in the strike zone. He had good life typically, but also could get very erratic. It was a tough mix for him to get past."
Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.