Cubs call up P.J. Higgins, Tony Wolters designated for assignment

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Cubs call up P.J. Higgins, Tony Wolters DFA'd originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

The Cubs swapped backup catchers on Wednesday, calling up P.J. Higgins from Triple-A Iowa while designating Tony Wolters for assignment.

Wolters, 28, appeared in 14 games across two stints with the Cubs this season, slashing .125/.276/.125.

Higgins, who has yet to make his MLB debut, is available for Wednesday's game against the Nationals.

With Austin Romine injured during camp, Higgins, 28, was in the mix for a spot on the Opening Day roster. After the Cubs signed Wolters in late March, Higgins reported to the alternate site and later Iowa — where he hit .333/.458/.513 (13-for-39) in 11 games.

But Higgins made an impression this spring on manager David Ross, who on Wednesday cited the catcher’s game-calling behind the plate, preparation and how he handled the Cubs’ pitching staff.

“We’ve liked Higgy for a long time and his skill set really fits us right now,” Ross said.

That skill set includes a contact bat and valuable defensive versatility. Higgins not only can catch but is a well-regarded third baseman, also with experience at first.

“He's a phenomenal third baseman,” Ross said. “They rave about his defense in the infield. I think he's a really good catcher.”

Ross has known Higgins dating back to his time as a special assistant in the front office and has received glowing reviews about the catcher through the years.

“He's a guy that the organization thinks highly of,” Ross said. “When you talk to the coaches that have seen this young man come up through the minor leagues, it's nothing but positive statements about who he is, how he plays, how he goes about his business.

“He’s the kind of player that I think you can fall in love with.

“I'm super happy all his hard work has paid off and he's here in the big leagues and gets to be in there and help us have a chance to win.”

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