Baker missed the entire 2012 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in April. While he’s not a sure bet to be back to full health by the time Opening Day rolls around, the Cubs thought enough of the right-hander to believe he offers value.
Prior to signing with the Cubs, Baker had spent his entire career with the Minnesota Twins. Selected in the second round of the 2003 MLB Draft, he made his debut with the club in 2005.
Baker was in the midst of a career year in 2011 before missing time due to injury. He returned at the end of the season but only pitched out of the bullpen at that point. Over 23 appearances, including 21 starts, in 2011, he maintained an ERA of 3.14.
Over seven years with the Twins Baker has posted a career ERA of 4.15 with 7.2 strikeouts per nine innings compared to 2.1 walks per nine innings.