Friday, January 12, 2007

Cubs sign Tomas Perez reports-

CHICAGO -- The Cubs signed switch-hitting infielder Tomas Perez to a Minor League deal with Triple-A Iowa, and he has been invited to big-league camp.
Perez, 33, played in 99 games with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in 2006, including 68 starts (33 at shortstop, 18 at second base, 13 at third base, three in right field and one at first base). He batted .257 after the All-Star break and finished with a .212 average, 12 doubles and 16 RBIs.
A native of Barquisimeto, Venezuela, Perez has a .240 career batting average with 24 home runs and 180 RBIs in 781 games with the Toronto Blue Jays (1995-1998), Philadelphia Phillies (2000-2005) and Devil Rays (2006).
Perez was originally signed by Montreal as a non-drafted free agent in July of 1991 before he was selected by the California Angels in the Major League portion of the 1994 Rule 5 Draft and traded to Toronto.
The Cubs open training camp in Mesa, Ariz., on Feb. 14, when pitchers and catchers report.

Not a bad signing, a nice guy to play OF and IF... Its only a minor league contract so no complaints

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Cubs center field still open


Ken Rosenthal burst back onto the scene with a slew of new trade and signing rumors for us to mull over. A summary:
The Cubs are still looking to trade Jacque Jones, who carries a reasonable price tag. Rosenthal says a Cliff Floyd signing is likely, though the Chicago papers reported nothing new on that front earlier this week. As expected, the Cubs would like a veteran to bridge the gap to center fielder of the future Felix Pie. Ryan Church, Steve Finley, or Darin Erstad could be that guy. Bernie Williams is a long shot, though the Cubs do have a good relationship with Scott Boras.

I dont understand why we would not have Pie, Jones, Theriot, and Murton battle for CF in Spring Training. You got to believe at least one of them could pull off decent defense out there andat least you know with Jones you get a good lefty bat in the lineup that can hit 25 hr. I only trade Jones if you can get good value for him like a Figgins( who is lefty and can fill the #2 spot nicely) or someone like that. Here is why Finley, Erstad, Williams, and possiably Church wont work here-

Finley is old and doesnt play very good offense or defense. Thats hardly an up grade from the players we already have on our team.

Erstad is not a bad player but also older and is hardly an everyday player and I think again the players on our staff would outperform him in every catergory. Besides he is a utility player and we have one already in Derosa.

Williams is a really good player but will not be able to play everyday and Jones would play better D then him in center but in retrospect he would be a good mentor for Pie, but again pretty old and can be outpreformed by many of the players on our staff.

Church is one of the few i actually like, He has good patients, he is young, decent power numbers but not gonna replace Jones offense. But plays good defense. check his stats-

What I do is keep the team as it is and let those player battle for cf. I do think adding Floyd is a good idea, he is a good hitter and would be great coming off the bench.. A great gamble for probably less than 5mill for one year deal. He could hit 25hr if heathy and is a great clubhouse guy and a much need lefty power bat in the outfield. I hope and think the cubs will sign him.

Thats just my thoughts tho.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Cubs players may go to arbitration hearings. Floyd and Jones.

The cubs in 12 years have never went to an arbitration hearing with a player, but that may all change. According to the daily herald there are a couple of intresting players up for arbitration- Z, Prior, and Ohman.

Big Z-Zambrano is entering his free-agent year, and the Cubs want to keep him. The best guess here is that the two sides will avoid arbitration and settle on a one-year deal before spring training. After that, general manager Jim Hendry will negotiate a multiyear extension, just as he did in years past with Kerry Wood, Derrek Lee and Aramis Ramirez

we already know this will basically happen because Jim said he will start negotiations in the next two weeks with Z and his agent. I think Bruce Miles hit it right on the head!

Prior-Prior made $3.55 million in 2005 and $3.65 million in 2006, when shoulder problems limited him to 9 starts and 43¿ innings. The Cubs may not go so far as to cut Prior’s salary (they’re allowed to do so by 20 percent), but don’t look for them to offer any raise, either.
We’ll see how Prior responds, both on and off the field.

Look for the cubs to give him a simular deal with wood, which prior wont like but a guy who probably wont be heathy by spring training and only had 9 starts and 43 innings he shouldnt complain

Ohman-The better bet is that this one ends up before the arbitrator, where Ohman may be looking to break the $1 million mark.

I guess he is worth a million or 1.5 million. No problem with that

This little tidbit is not much but at least people are still asking about it-

The Cubs report no new progress with free-agent outfielder Cliff Floyd, late of the Mets. Ditto for any trade talk surrounding apparently disgruntled outfielder Jacque Jones.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Hendry to work hard on signing Big Z

Hendry was on the score today(the North show) and he stated that he has already had talks with Z and his agent. He said he will hit negotiations hard in 2 weeks and his goal is to have him signed to a long term deal before opening day.

This is good news to cubs fans, Zambrano said he wants to remain a cub for his entire career and it sounds like the will get a chance to do that.. He could make anywhere from 16 to 20 mil a season for the next 6 to 9 years and probably could get more than that on the free agent market, hopefully theres no snags and he signs before opening day because the last thing we want to see is Big Z in another uniform!

Great Article On

Heres some great reading, check it out.

A Case for the Hawk
I grew up on the Cubs of the early '90s. By and large, the Cubs weren't very good, but there were three guys that they could always count on - Ryne Sandberg, Mark Grace, and Andre Dawson. Andre Dawson was a guy that would always be in the lineup, even though it sometimes looked like it was killing him to do so. He was a quiet guy that went about his business and just put up good numbers. But does he belong in the Hall of Fame?
Here's the thing about the crop of great power hitters of the late '70s and '80s -- conventional wisdom is that if you let one of them in, you're almost obligated to let them all in. If the Hawk gets in, so do Dale Murphy, Dave Parker, and Jim Rice.
Personally, I believe the Hall of Fame should be for the absolute elite. You know who I would have voted for last year? Lee Smith. That's it. I could have gone either way on Hawk, Rice, and Jack Morris -- but to me, if you have to think about it too long, then they probably don't belong in the Hall. Hall of Fame inductees should be automatic. Would I have voted for Bruce Sutter? Only if Lee Smith got there as well. Alan Trammell? Nope. Bert Blyleven? Absolutely not. I know that may not make gobs of logical sense, but it's what I believe nonetheless.
Dawson, Murphy, Parker and Rice (hereafter the Big 4) have been on the ballot for a while now, but none of them had come terribly close to the 75% of votes necessary for elelction until Rice's numbers started increasing the past few years. Many reasoned that the voters were looking at the numbers of modern-day sluggers and saw that the stats of the Big 4 paled by comparison. But now, those same voters (in their day job as writers) are looking at today's numbers for what they are (steroid-inflated), and saying that the Big 4 probably could have hit 50 homers a year as well if they had the clear and the cream as well. So it's very possible that their vote totals will rise this year.
But voting someone into the Hall of Fame because somebody else used steroids doesn't seem to make sense, unless you were previously using the abusers as benchmarks to determine Hall eligibility. So let's try to steer clear of the whole mess here and not draw any comparisons between the Big 4 and the players of today.
There's not a lot of doubt that the Big 4 were among the best players of their era. They combined for 30 All-Star nominations, 5 MVP awards, 13 Silver Slugger Awards, and 16 Gold Gloves. For their careers, each of them have at least 2,111 hits, 339 homers, and 1,266 RBI. Just as importantly, they were consistent, as evidenced by the fact that each of them had at least 7 All-Star nominations.
For some, this is reason enough to put the Big 4 in the Hall -- in response to the steroid controversy, many have adopted the idea that we should just put in the best players of a given era. Thus, these four were among the best players of their era, so they should be in. But if someone in today's era were to match Dave Parker's stats, that wouldn't necessarily grant them enshrinement in the Hall, because they may not be the best players of the era.
In general, this strikes me as a good idea. But I don't think we should just flip a switch and let them all in. What say we take a look at the numbers and see if any of them stand out above the rest; if we find that hey all deserve enshrinement, then so be it. Away we go:
Dawson: .279/.323/.482, 2627 games, 2774 hits, 503 doubles, 438 homers, 1591 RBI, 314 SB. 8-time All-Star, 1 MVP award, 4 Silver Slugger Awards, 8 Gold Glove awards.
Rice: .298/.352/.502, 2089 games, 2452 hits, 373 doubles, 382 homers, 1451 RBI, 58 SB. 8-time All-Star, 1 MVP award, 2 Silver Slugger Awards, 0 Gold Glove Awards.
Murphy: .265/.346/.469, 2180 games, 2111 hits, 350 doubles, 398 homers, 1266 RBI, 161 SB. 7-time All-Star, 2 MVP awards, 4-time Silver Slugger Awards, 5 Gold Glove Awards.
Parker: .290/.339/.471, 2466 games, 2712 hits, 526 doubles, 339 homers, 1493 RBI, 154 SB. 7-time All- Star, 1 MVP award, 3 Silver Slugger Awards, 3 Gold Glove Awards.
Here's how my ballot for the Big 4 would shape up:
Murphy - Surprisingly, the best power hitter in the bunch, statistically at least (although playing at Fulton-County Stadium probably helped a bit). If he had gotten as many AB's as Hawk, Murphy would have passed him in HR's. The two MVP's are also impressive, and they were for Braves teams that were actually pretty decent. But the .265 AVG is pretty unimpressive, as is the number of hits compared to the others'. Murphy had some high-AVG years, but there were also 3 seasons where he couldn't crack .230, and a few more that weren't particularly impressive. Sorry, Dale, you're out.
Parker - I'll give this to Dave -- that's a lot of two-baggers for a big guy. The AVG and total hits are great, but the power numbers aren't the best -- by comparison, Jack Clark had 340, Don Baylor had 338, and even Gary Gaetti had 360, and he couldn't find Cooperstown on a map. I could go either way on Cobra . . . so he's out.
Rice - Best pure hitter of the bench. That .298/.352/.502 is a pretty nifty line. He would have topped 400 homers and gotten close to 3000 hits if he had stayed around, but he left a bit early because of injuries. The defense isn't get him any votes, but he was still the best hitter in the A.L. for several years, and the numbers back that up. You're in, Jim.
Dawson - The average is good, but not great, and I really think the homers have to be adjusted to the fact that he stayed around a bit too long and played in Wrigley Field. But the homers, the RBI's, the defense, and the consistency speak fo themselves. Time for the Hawk to fly to Cooperstown.
So what do you all think? If you had a vote, who would you check on your ballot?

Sunday, January 07, 2007

2007 Starting Pitching Projections

With news and rumors as slow as it is, and counting the days til Spring Training. I have decided to put up my starting pitching projections.

Carlos Zambrano- 19-6 2.87 era and 222 K's

Ted Lilly- 14-8 3.99 era and 163 K's

Rich Hill- 12-14 4.14 era and 121 K's

Jason Marquis- 14-12 4.40 era and 102 K's

Mark Prior- 7-4 3.99 era and 60 K's ( taking in consideration that he wont be ready by spring training)

Wade Miller- 9-7 4.09 era and 78 K's( Mark and Miller will share time at he 5th spot and also both could be spot starters in some situations)

Thats the numbers i came up with, it would be great if the first four starter would all get double digits in wins and single digits in losses but that wont happen. I see alot of decisions in the cubs starting pitching this year, yet I also see the bullpen being used and getting quite a bit of the decisions also. I did take into consideration that maybe Marshall, Marmol, or Cotts maybe get a start here or there but thats hard to project. I will do another one of these along with Postion player projections near spring training, alot can happen from now til then so stayed tuned.