Saturday, January 20, 2007

Soriano in Center??

Lou said today that he is serious considering putting Soriano in center next year. He said since he says he is willing to play center (as he stated on the radio) he may just get the job. Sori played great defense in left field at RFK, and i think he will do really well in center in Wrigley. He has the speed and arm to be a great CF. I also seen on the message board that a poster said he talked to Lou today and said his lineup is this ( not to say he actually did but this is a very realistic lineup that makes since)

1. Sori CF
2. Derosa 2B
3. Dlee 1st
4. Aram 3b
5. Jones RF
6. Barrett C
7. Murton LF
8. Izzy ss

Big Z
Prior( if not heathy then Marshall/Miller

The only thing I would change is to put Murton in the 2 hole and Derosa in the 7 hole.. Thats a really good lineup considering 1 thru 7 can hit double digit in homers, that rotation looks really tough.. I think the cubs should add Floyd to come off the bench and give Murton and Jones a rest once in a while.. He would do nothing but improve this team.. Im so pumped for the season, I hope it gets here quick!

Arbitration News

According the Daily Southtown, Chicago Tribune, and the Sun-Times, Carlos has set a deadline on when he wants to get a multi year deal done by, that date is opeining day. He says he will not go into contract negotiations during the season, he wants to concentrate on baseball for obvious reasons. There arbitration numbers are about 4.5 million dollars off, to me thats not a big deal especially if we are trying to work on a deal to make him a life time cub. Hendry is meeting with Big Z's agent today, this will be there second meeting and hopefully they can make headway to signing Z. The cubs no doubt will ask for a hometown discount, and hopefully he will give them one just like Aram did. Z is looking for Zito money and as well he should, he is younger and a better pitcher than Zito.. Theres no doubt if( god forbid) Z hits the free agent market he will get 20 million a year, its believed that Jim's idea of a hometown discount is in the range of 6-7 years 100 million.. thats about 14-16 million a year. I think he gets about 6-7 years 110-120million from the cubs which he deserves, there arnt many pitchers that deserve that kind of money(Santana) . The one thing I dont do is lose him because he is priceless to this team and no one on our current staff can fill that #1 spot, so get it done Jimbo!
The papers also said that the arbitration figures given to Prior from the cubs didnt insult him, he just wants to concentrate on baseball and get back out on the field. With the numbers being so close together I think they get it done by the weekend, if not then then soon after. As far as the cubs sending a message to Prior with the number being lower than last years salary, thats absurd, its just bussiness and the cubs just want to put out a amount that they feel is right.
As long as Jim keeps moving forward there is no reason the cubs and there players go to an arbitration hearings. They havent went to hearings since Mark Grace in 1993. Hopefully they dont go this year either.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Theriot in Center? Jones? Pie?

At the convention today Lou was asked if Jones was his CF, he said he doesnt know and basically alot can change from now to then. He also says right now he has Jones penciled in the Number 5 spot behind Aram.. He did say he likes the player Jones is, likes his attitude, hustle, work ethic, etc.
Lou did say that center is open tho. One person he mentioned as a wild card is Theriot, he would provide good defense in center.. I seen him play some outfield in Iowa, he is a good defender, not to mention he is a pest when he bats. Lou said center is the only postion on the field they havent filled yet and he made it sound like it will be determined in Spring Training, and thats the way it should be, make them battle for that spot. Pie sounds like a long shot from Lou point of view but that can all change when he shows his D in Spring Training. All Pie needs to do is work his a$$ off and hit for a decent adverage and I have a feeling we will see him in the opening day lineup.

More Moves Could Be Made??

According to the Daily Herald-

If the season started today, Jones would move from right field to center. However, if the Cubs feel Jones is unhappy enough with his lot in Chicago to be a disruptive force on the team, they’ll move him.
Jones came to Chicago to play for Baker. But with Baker gone and Jones being upset with his treatment at the hands of some Cubs fans, the situation could be a sticky one.
On top of that, minor-league prospect Felix Pie may be ready to step into center field at some point, so the Cubs may look to unload Jones and pick up a stopgap for center.
Whatever happens, Hendry seems to be feeling good about his club. A couple of tweaks may have him really excited.
“If those things happen, I would go to camp feeling real good about us,” he said. “I know we’re much, much better. I’m excited about the bullpen. I think we’re going to get more innings out of the starters than we had the last couple of years.
“When you can add a player of Soriano’s caliber, you’re going to be a lot more dangerous to start with. Yeah, you couldn’t help but feel good about the improvements, and one or two more things before Opening Day might make us a real good ballclub to compete against.”

It sounds very likely that Jones would be moving on before or during Spring Training. The way Jim makes it sound, he will give Pie every chance to win the spot, obviously Jones doesnt want to be here and the cubs are trying to find the right deal.. You have heard names like Figgins, Church and Erstad etc.. I have no problems having JJ start in center if he wants to be here. He puts up good offensive numbers and plays decent defense but has problems throwing, he cant be as bad as having Finley or Erstad out there. If he truly wants out, he will be out before opening day. Now is Erstad the answer for center? I say no, he is just coming off an injury and has been nothing more than a bench player the majortiy of his career.. I wish the A's would have took him but the have backed off according to some sources. Church would be a decent shot if it doesnt cost much, he is young, plays good D, has decent power and speed, he is a lefty and can hit in the #2 hole. Figgins would be ideal in my opinion, he had an off year last year but he has good speed and defense and could be a great stop gap for Pie. But in my mind I make the trade for Jones because I feel Pie is the real deal and he is ready this year, his winter league offensive stats dont show it but if he can hit .260 or above ill take that because of the D he plays.
Hendry says "one or two more things before opening day might make us a real good ball club". He also says he loves the rotation and bullpen so im thinking he means one more left handed bat( Cliff Floyd) and probably a trade for Jones.. I just hope he is not considering Erstad, I would put Pie, Theriot, Murton, Soriano, Derosa, and Pagan ahead of Erstad to man center. But as we have all seen, have faith in Jimbo, he will do the right thing.

Cubs Spring Training Games On WGN

Heres a list of spring trainig games and times that your cubbies will be on WGN-

Chicago Cubs vs. Chicago White SoxSunday, March 4 at 3:00 p.m. ET (12:00 p.m. PT)Live from HoHoKam Park in Mesa, AZAnnouncers: Len Kasper and Bob Brenly

Chicago White Sox vs. Chicago CubsFriday, March 16 at 4:00 p.m. ET (1:00 p.m. PT)Live from Tucson Electric Park in Tucson, AZAnnouncers: Ken Harrelson and Darriin Jackson

Chicago Cubs vs. San Diego PadresSaturday, March 17 at 4:00 p.m. ET (1:00 p.m. PT)Live from HoHoKam Park in Mesa, AZAnnouncers: Len Kasper and Bob BrenlyChicago

Cubs vs. Los Angeles Angels of AnaheimSunday, March 25 at 4:00 p.m. ET (1:00 p.m. PT)Live from HoHoKam Park in Mesa, AZAnnouncers: Len Kasper and Bob Brenly

Chicago Cubs vs. Seattle MarinersFriday, March 30 at 10:00 p.m. ET (7:00 p.m. PT)Live from Cashman Field in Las Vegas, NVAnnouncers: Len Kasper and Bob Brenly

Thanks to SBFT on cubs prosportsdaily forum board

Jeff Samardzija picks cubs over NFL

Thanks to

CHICAGO -- Jeff Samardzija, whom the Cubs selected in the fifth round of the 2006 First-Year Player Draft, will forgo the National Football League Draft and commit to a baseball career.
"I am pleased to announce that today I have reached an agreement on a five-year Major League contract with the Chicago Cubs," Samardzija said in a statement. "Consequently, I will devote my full time and attention to professional baseball and forgo a potential career in the National Football League."
The right-hander's deal includes club options for the 2012 and 2013 seasons. Samardzija, who will turn 22 on Tuesday, went 21-6 with a 3.82 ERA in 50 career appearances, including 31 starts, at the University of Notre Dame. In seven starts across two Class A levels with the Cubs in 2006, Samardzija posted a 2.70 ERA.
Samardzija finished his football career at Notre Dame this year as the program's career leader in receiving yards with 2,593 and receiving touchdowns with 27.
"I want to thank the Chicago Cubs and the Tribune Company for helping make this happen," Samardzija said. "I want to especially thank [general manager] Jim Hendry. His belief in me and my passion for baseball never wavered.
"In closing, I want to let Cubs fans know that I am committed to their team and their goal -- to bring a World Series championship to this great franchise. I only hope I can be a part of that someday."
Samardzija is expected to begin the season at Class A Peoria under new manager Ryne Sandberg, according to the Chicago Tribune.

This is good news for cubs fans, he is gonna be a great mlb player.. I just wish the press conferance would have announced we have signing Z to a long term deal but hey I guess we will have to wait for that.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Good News On Prior, Wood, and Miller!

Thanks to my cubs insider source and confirming this-

CHICAGO -- The Cubs began their winter Cubs Caravan tour on Wednesday with good news regarding Mark Prior, who is throwing off the mound and making good progress.
"Mark is up on the hill, throwing some bullpens and doing well," Cubs general manager Jim Hendry said Wednesday before boarding a bus with other players and staff for a trip to downstate Illinois.
"The reports have been encouraging, and we're all keeping our fingers crossed," Hendry said. "We'd love to show up and have the old Mark back and feel like we have a great, new player come in that we weren't expecting. We wanted to cover ourselves in depth if Mark was behind, but if he's on schedule, we'll feel like we got a bonus."
Prior, 26, is coming off an injury-shortened season in which he was 1-6 with a 7.21 ERA in nine starts. A shoulder injury hampered him, and he was forced to devote this offseason to rehab. Pitching coach Larry Rothschild said he talked to the right-hander every week for progress reports.
"He's going through a pretty strenuous program and has been throwing for quite a while," Rothschild said.
But the Cubs won't know for sure if Prior is the 2003 version, when he was 18-6 with a 2.43 ERA in 30 starts, until Spring Training. Pitchers and catchers report on Feb. 14.
Rothschild also has been in contact with right-hander Wade Miller, who made five September starts for the Cubs in his comeback from arthroscopic shoulder surgery in 2005.
"He's had a good winter and worked hard," Rothschild said of Miller, 30, who won 16, 15, and 14 games in consecutive seasons with Houston from 2001-2003. "[Miller] started throwing a few weeks ago and has had no problems at all. All three of the guys rehabbing have really worked hard."
The third is Kerry Wood, who was diagnosed with a partial tear in his right rotator cuff and opted to rehab rather than undergo surgery. Rothschild said he's encouraged by Wood's progress, too.
" This time of year, guys should be doing well," Rothschild said. "As we get closer to Spring Training, we keep getting positive feedback."

This is great news for cubs fan, its Jan 17th and Prior is throwing off the mound. Now if he can just stay heathy he would help the cubs tremedously and hope he bounces back to his 03 status.. Along with Miller is feeling great and has had no set backs and or problems, if you can get him to win 14 games that would be huge! To add to the excitment having Larry be encouraged with Kerry's progress and that my friends would make our Pen so strong. Im so pumped to get Spring Training started. Go cubs!

Also in that article it says Hendry wants to tinker with the outfield.. Does this mean a trade(Jones) or adding another player(erstad or Floyd)? He says that Pie is playing good defense and he will fit in the program wether its opening day or on down the road.. They also say Pie will have to fight for CF, he wont be handed the job.. This is also good news, I love players battling hard in SP for a spot, should be great to keep track of! Only if it can come sooner!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Ohman signs contract? Jim exchanges numbers with Z and Prior.

Thanks to

CHICAGO -- The Cubs avoided arbitration with Will Ohman, signing the left-hander to a two-year, $2.5 million deal on Tuesday, and exchanged figures with Carlos Zambrano and Mark Prior, who are seeking raises.
Zambrano and Prior are the only arbitration-eligible players remaining for the Cubs, and they and the team submitted salary figures on Tuesday.
Zambrano, who was paid $6.5 million in 2006, is asking for $15.5 million in 2007. The Cubs countered with an offer of $11.025 million. The right-hander was 16-7 with a 3.41 ERA in 33 starts last season, matching his career high in wins. Zambrano, 25, will be eligible for free agency after the 2007 season, and the Cubs may try to reach an agreement on a long-term deal before Opening Day.
Prior, who is coming off an injury-shortened season in which he was 1-6 in nine starts, is asking for $3.875 million. The Cubs have countered with an offer of $3.4 million. Prior made $3.65 million in 2006.
If the two sides cannot reach an agreement, there will be a hearing in front of an independent arbitrator. The hearings usually take place in February.
The Cubs have not gone to arbitration with a player in the 12 years Andy MacPhail was team president, and the last player to do so with the team was Mark Grace in 1993.
Ohman, 29, set career-highs in 2006 in games (78), innings (65 1/3) and strikeouts (74). He led the team by stranding 80.5 percent of inherited runners and limiting hitters to a .208 batting average. Ohman held opponents scoreless in 63 of his 78 appearances, and he struck out at least one batter in 51 of his 78 outings.

Im glad we got Ohman out of the way, his deal seems fair and he will definitly better this team. As far as Prior goes, he should thank the cubs for making such a great offer, you havent started hardly any games in the past two years, what makes you think you deserve a raise?? Prior shut up and take the cubs offer! Now that i have that off my chest, the two sides are not far apart and should come to an agreement soon.
Now on to Big Z, I do think Z's offer is very reasonable, if Schmidt makes that much then he should.. Yes the cubs are low balling him just to protect themselves. No need to worry cub fans. They will have this done and wont have to meet with an arbitrator, then by or during spring training you will hear that the cubs signed Z to a multi year deal.. Nothing to be worried about.

Sosa could be a Ranger?

According to many sites, Slammin Sammy is trying out for the Texas Rangers where it all began. Texas needs Of/DH help and Sammy wants to get back in the big leagues, so it sounds like a good match right?? The one problem that I see is that I dont see any team (except in Japanball) giving Sosa a major league contract. The most I see is a minor league deal with an invite to spring training. Or I could see some teams taking a gamble just to put butts in the seats, lets say Royals. It will be interesting to see where Sammy ends up. My bet is he signs a minor league deal with the Rangers and makes the team in spring training as there 4th OF and DH.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Jones Out? Floyd In? or Not?

Theres an intresting idea in this article-,1,1236144.story?coll=cs-cubs-headlines

Jacque Jones still is on the roster and Cliff Floyd isn't, though their situations are almost certain to be resolved before spring training. Floyd already has told friends he intends to be a Cub, while Jones isn't expected at the weekend convention, indicating he's likely on his way out of town.

With Alfonso Soriano slated for right field, Hendry still doesn't have a regular center fielder if top prospect Felix Pie can't earn the spot in Arizona. The signing of utilityman Tomas Perez on Friday is merely a bandage, and the long-rumored trade that would bring Washington's Ryan Church to Chicago remains a long shot.

For now, it's sink or swim with Pie.

He makes a really good point, and the Duffy/ McLouth rumor makes more since now. The reason i say that is instead of having a signing of Finley or Erstad and completly blocking Pie this year without giving him a chance in spring training, you make a trade with the Buccos and get Duffy or McLouth and have Pie battle it out for the job. It makes perfect since because with the signing of a stop gap your basically telling Pie your not ready this year and you will be stating in AAA, if you did that you would probably kill his confidence. Instead I feel Jim wants to give him a chance to win the spot in the Spring by battling against Duffy or McLouth for the spot. Now is that saying the Jones trade will go down, who knows?? all i know is things are starting to come together now.


The chicago sun times have a different opinion-,CST-SPT-deluca15.article

Im not gonna put he whole article on here but all Jones haters/lovers should read it. It sound like Jones maybe on his way out but will not be given away, nor should he. Chris says that Jones hasent formally made a trade but there is enough evidence in his article to say that the cubs and JJ want a divorce, and if Jones doesnt want to be here you have to trade him because you dont want that cancer on your team. It also says that right now Jones is the only reasonable solution in CF, which I 100% agree, we need a left handed stick in the 5 spot, we need that 25 hr on the team and no one on our roster can take the place of that. Yet. Floyd sounds like he is waiting in the wings for Jones to be traded so he can offically be a cub and it also sound like the Giants could be a suitor if they cant get the Bonds deal done.. But who would we want from the Giants??? Winn?? Not alot of player on there I see as a match.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Cubs may trade Jones to Pirates

Check out the tidbit at

If the Cubs are serious about movie OF Jacque Jones, Pittsburgh is the most likely destination. The Pirates are looking to add a left handed bat and are willing to trade either Chris Duffy or Nate McLouth. The trade would work well for the Pirates because of Jones' familiarity with the NL Central, while the Cubs would get a year, two tops, out of either Duffy or McLouth. Cubs top prospect Felix Pie is expected to take over in center field in 2008, so it is possible that the player the Cubs get would get the full time job in '07, and platoon with Pie in '08.
The Pirates have re-upped their offers to Brian Lawrence and Tomo Ohka, according to the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. The Cubs continue to talk with Cliff Floyd and are working to avoid arbitration with Mark Prior and Will Ohman, before starting with Carlos Zambrano. Cubs GM Jim Hendry said he plans to talk with Zambrano's agent before Spring Training.

This is intresting, I tend to believe Jones is worth more than McLouth or Duffy. They both have average stats and play OK defense in center. They are Left handed which is a plus and are a better option than Erstad or Finley but I tend to think like i have said that Jones or Pie could take over center for the cubs next year. But here are there stats-

Mc Louth-

Im glad Hendry is still talking to Floyd, he would be a great addition to the cubs. I also think he is going at Prior and Ohman the right way that, get them out of the way so you can devote your time to signing Big Z.