Saturday, August 11, 2007
DENVER -- Will Ohman's latest attempt at clearing up his name was not received well by his teammates, manager and general manager, and could lead to an off-season divorce from the organization.Ohman appeared Friday on the "Mike North Morning Show" on WSCR-AM 670, apparently to defend himself from speculation he was embellishing a minor arm ailment to avoid reporting to Triple-A Iowa. Ohman told the station the Cubs doctors knew of his arm problem and that he had been hurting for 2 1/2 months.
He said Tuesday the Cubs trainers knew his shoulder was "barking."One player walked up to a group of reporters Friday and pointed out that Ohman never reported early to the ballpark to have Cubs trainers work on his arm."You can't not show up and then say you're hurt," he said. "It doesn't work that way."Some Cubs were upset trainer Mark O'Neal has been dragged into the controversy. One even referred to Ohman as "our former left-hander."General manager Jim Hendry reiterated neither Ohman nor O'Neal mentioned any injury to him before Ohman was demoted to Iowa on Tuesday. If Ohman had been injured seriously the Cubs would have placed him on the disabled list."If Will felt he couldn't go, for the benefit of the ballclub, he should have let us know so we could have gotten somebody else to pitch," Hendry said.Hendry was upset Ohman continued to make an issue of his demotion three days later."I've known Will since I drafted him in 1998, and I'm fairly visible in our clubhouse," Hendry said. "He never mentioned [an injury] to me. Let's not make a bigger thing out of it than it is. He certainly was not a DL candidate. He was available to pitch even on the night he was sent out."Ohman is scheduled to report to Iowa on Saturday.Hendry wouldn't speculate on Ohman's future in the organization, although club sources say he is likely to be traded or released after this season. Ohman is signed through 2008 and will receive $1.6 million next year.Manager Lou Piniella said Ohman's injury was news to him."[O'Neal] is really good at conveying to me if a guy has as much as a pimple," Piniella said. "I work closely with the trainer. He gives me a report daily on who can play and who he's treating and so forth."Was Piniella upset by the accusation the team knew Ohman was injured when he was sent down?"All I know is what I was told, and if I had known there was a problem, whether it was Ohman or any other player, I wouldn't use him," he said. "It's hard enough to play this game when you're 100 percent, as opposed to playing it less that that. And I know Mark is good at giving me reports, so I'll leave it at that."
Guys like this don't deserve to put on a Cubs uniform. He is the type of guy who only looks after himself and blames " the trainer and his injury" on why he was sent down. If your injured tell the freaking team! Don't go out there and pitch because your only hurting the team!
Put this guy on waivers because I don't want to see his name on a cubs jersey whether it be Iowa or Chicago ever again!
According to multiple sites the White Sox want a good prospect for Pods. Is Pods the same guy that they tried to nontender at the beginning of the season?? Isn't he the same guy who Ozzie called "unreliable"???? It seems the Sox are trying to rob the cubs of one of its decent prospects. I have heard the Sox want players like Marmol, Gallagher, etc, if the white Sox think there gonna get a player like that for Pods there stupid. You can have a player like Cedeno, Ohman, Cotts, or Coats or someone not on the 40 man roster. The Sox should just do a salary dump on the Cubs and get a PTBNL from them. This way some of there young kids can play and Pods can go to a winning team and help us. Come on Williams, stop asking for the moon for your players be realistic!
Friday, August 10, 2007
Hendry would neither confirm nor deny the report and said, "I don't want to get into specific guys I've claimed. I mean, this is part of the business. I've probably claimed a dozen guys this week. What I try to do is make claims of anybody that I thought could possibly help us. Most of the time the claims you make, really the other team has no interest of moving the guy anyhow, but that's what you do every day."
Sounds like Hendry is staying busy. I want to thank all my sources and reader for the information they have gave me.
A major league source confirmed the Cubs put in a waiver claim on White Sox outfielder Scott Podsednik, one of the heroes of the 2005 World Series season.
The Sox can either work out compensation for Podsednik, who could help the Cubs in the outfield, or simply let the Cubs claim him and pick up the balance of his $2.9 million salary. It's unlikely the Sox would fail to work out a deal, given their emphasis on looking to the future with Jerry Owens in the leadoff spot.
If Podsednik moves to the Cubs, the Sox would save more than $800,000. That would mean more than $3 million saved in deals involving Tadahito Iguchi, Rob Mackowiak and Podsednik.
Looks like I may be wrong. I found this and MLBTR is now reporting that we won the claim. Sounds like a deal could be done by tonight and he could play in the next game. Pods adds so good speed to this team and with him and Theriot at the top you have a great chance to score in the first inning! Not to mention he is better than Murton, and would be great off the bench when Sori comes back!
Cubs Claim Scott Podsednik?
Several people have emailed me this morning about an ESPN Radio 1000 report. Apparently the Cubs have claimed Scott Podsednik. As with the Shannon Stewart situation, I'm currently unclear on whether the Cubs simply put in the claim on Pods or if they've been awarded it.
How Podsednik would help the Cubs is beyond me, but that's why Jim Hendry gets paid the big bucks. Podsednik makes another $860K or so this year, and might be a nontender candidate this winter. By the way, this is where I believe the original rumor began.
Now( like the guy who runs MLBTR) I don't believe that the cubs put a claim on Pods. I do think this is just a rumor that hit radio stations and people ran with it. Now I could be wrong but that is just my opinion.
Jim Hendry has been busy the last couple of days. According to sources, Hendry is trying to make this team better, and working hard to fill in holes that this team currently has. According to several of my sources Hendry has put in at least 12 waiver claims on 12 players in the last couple of days. Be interesting to see what players he wins and what players he ends up getting. So far I have kept record of players that are rumored to have been claimed.
I will update this list as soon as I hear any other names pop up.
Thursday, August 09, 2007
Come on Cubs fans, Iknow its depressing but keep the faith!
UPDATE- It seems Hendry is look for a guy for 3b and outfield thru waivers the keep the team afloat. I will keep you updated on what I hear if anything.
UPDATE2- Aram received a cortisone shot in that wrist and he will be back with the team Friday but not expected to play until Sunday but that is unlikely. More than likely he will make his next start on Tuesday against the Reds.
Several people have emailed me regarding a Bruce Levine report today on ESPN 1000. It seems the Cubs may have won a waiver claim on Shannon Stewart, meaning the two teams have 48.5 hours to work out a trade.
The 33 year-old outfielder is having a solid year by his standards and has managed to stay healthy. But with a .401 SLG, he doesn't add much pop to the currently punchless Cubs squad. I would imagine Stewart will be a Type B free agent, lessening the quality of the player going to Oakland in return.
Besides his health, Stewart has been great. Hitting .298 with a .360 OBP in 102 games. He has 9 homers and hitting well against both lefties and righties. I shouldn't cost much to get him so this is not a bad move if it goes thru.
More bad news. The cubs may have lost another bat. Aram was will fly back to chicago Thursday to get his right wrist examined. This would be the biggest blow to the cubs!
Wednesday, August 08, 2007
"General manager Jim Hendry scoffed at rumors the Cubs are trying to acquire White Sox outfielder Scott Podsednik in a waiver trade."
Wow no one heard this one. Now that Pagan is on the DL maybe Jim should check to see his availability. He would provide great speed and a catalyst for the cubs much needed running game.
Tuesday, August 07, 2007
Cubs Considering Outfielders
Multiple readers have emailed me about a radio report on WSCR 670 The Score out of Chicago today. According to the report, the Cubs are considering multiple trade possibilities to fill the monthlog gap left by Alfonso Soriano's quad injury. On the radar: Craig Monroe, Matt Stairs, Jeff Conine, and Adam Dunn. Additionally, Cubs GM Jim Hendry came out and said today that he's working the phones to find some help.
Contract situations of each player:
Monroe - $1.5MM left in '07, should earn $5MM+ in '08 before reaching free agency
Stairs - $267K left in '07, free agent after season
Conine - $630K left in '07, free agent after seasonDunn - $3.3MM left in '07, free agent after season if traded
Monroe is the right-handed Jacque Jones, contract situation and all. He'd be a poor and mildly expensive addition. He'd probably clear waivers.
Stairs is doing what he does best, mashing righties. He's having his best season since 2003. He's not earning much and has no '08 commitment. He played for the Cubs in '01 and did a decent job. The problem? He might be claimed off waivers before he gets to the Cubs. Jim Hendry really should've made this deal in July. Every AL team will have a crack at him first on waivers. Plus the Jays might fancy themselves contenders at six games out of the wild card.
Conine is on the last leg of his career and doesn't really offer anything Matt Murton doesn't. I don't really see the point but this pickup seems most likely.
Dunn is the most intriguing and also by far the least likely option here. The Cubs would have to give up some good players and pay out a decent chunk of salary for less than two months of Dunn. They'd also have to do something ugly like put him in right field when Soriano comes back. I don't see this happening.
I would say no to half of those except Monroe and Stairs. Dunn is to expensive and that trade wouldn't happen, Conine, please no! Monroe and Stairs would be a good improvement to the team and we can get them for nothing like Cedeno, Cotts, Ohman or middle level minor leaguers then do it.
Here is a list of players Hendry should look at.
Damon- The Yanks have tried to deal him the whole month of July and couldn't find a taker on his contract. He could clear waivers and alot of people wouldn't take on his salary. He would provide speed, pop, and crazy defense in CF. If you agree to pay the majority of the contract the yanks would probably take a couple of young minor league players for him.
Juan Encarnacion - He provides some nice defense and could also pass waivers. He is a good righty bat and he hits leftys well hitting .300 against them. He has a great arm and could make this team better.
Wily Mo Pena- Check this out on MLB.com-
Wily Mo Pena Clears Waivers
According to Rob Bradford of the Boston Herald, Wily Mo Pena has cleared waivers without a claim. It seems no team was willing to risk taking on the $580K owed to Pena this year. Pena can now be freely traded to any team in baseball, though the players received would have to clear waivers too if on the 40-man roster. The way around it would be to make them players to be named later.
I'm surprised no one put in a claim on Pena. It can't really be his salary, can it? Teams waste more than that on players with no upside constantly. Abraham Nunez makes almost $2MM this year. Is it possible that Theo Epstein somehow convinced the 29 other GMs not to put in a claim? That doesn't seem possible either. Why wouldn't Jim Bowden put in a claim? He loves Pena. Why wouldn't the White Sox put in a claim? Even if a GM figured he couldn't hammer out a deal with Epstein for Pena, why not put in a claim anyway just in case?
Why not get this guy. The Sox are basically unloading him. Why not ship them back Murton and give the Ohman while there at it. That should bring Pena here. He has raw power and if you read this blog then you know how much I love Pena!
Ryan Church- Good defense, he is a lefty and we really need someone who hits rightys well. He is a power threat but Jim usually want the sky for him.
Sammy Sosa- He has lost playing time because Texas is going with the youth movement. He would clear waivers and could come really cheap. He hits well against leftys and I would love to see a platoon situation with him and floyd in RF.
Brad Wilkerson- Good power numbers low OBP and low average but could be a nice addition.
In other notes the Cubs have recalled RHP Sean Gallagher and sent Ohman to Iowa. Bout time Ohman got sent down.
Monday, August 06, 2007
HOUSTON -- An MRI revealed a one-centimeter tear in Alfonso Soriano's right quad, and he is not expected to return to the Cubs' lineup until Labor Day.
"There's no sense hanging your head," Cubs general manager Jim Hendry said Monday. "You've got to get after it -- there's no sympathy. We're ready to grind it out, and we've got people who can handle it."
The Cubs promoted Eric Patterson from Triple-A Iowa to take Soriano's spot on the roster but will shuffle the players in left field and the lineup. Ryan Theriot will handle the leadoff duties.
Soriano was able to put some weight on his right leg Monday, and the tear affects one of the four quad muscles. Because his other muscles are so strong, he is expected to recover well. There was no need for surgery, and it's not a season-ending injury.
The outfielder, whom the Cubs signed this offseason to an eight-year, $136 million deal, is expected to start running in two weeks. At that time, the team's medical staff will likely have a better idea of the extent of the injury.
Soriano was sidelined earlier this year with a sore left hamstring, and the Cubs survived. They've also done well when Aramis Ramirez and closer Ryan Dempster missed time.
"We have a deep team," said first baseman Derrek Lee, who also missed some time earlier this season. "Last year, we couldn't afford to lose anybody for any amount of time. This year, we have a lot more talent, we're a lot deeper, injuries don't hurt as much.
"You have to have that [depth] to be a good team," Lee said. "Obviously, you don't replace a guy like Soriano, but we have guys who can step in and do a good job. It's not the end of the world. We feel terrible for 'Sori,' but it's not the end of the world."
Soriano was injured running the bases Sunday night and came up limping after rounding second base. He remained in Chicago and is expected to join the team in Colorado on Thursday.
"He's a showman, he really is," Cubs manager Lou Piniella said. "He's got a lot of energy, and I think it's good to have him around the baseball team. The players enjoy having him around, and so do I."
"Last year, we couldn't afford to lose anybody for any amount of time. This year, we have a lot more talent, we're a lot deeper, injuries don't hurt as much."
-- Derrek Lee
For now, Hendry said the Cubs will stay in-house and continue to rely on the Minor League system to survive the next month without Soriano. The Cubs began Monday one game behind the Milwaukee Brewers in the National League Central Division.
"Every time we've brought somebody up this year, for the most part, they've been contributors and earned their stripes," said Hendry, who is keeping an eye on Minor Leaguers like Geovany Soto, Buck Coats and Jake Fox.
"At the same time, we're not going to say we're folding our tents and hope it works out with the in-house guys," Hendry said. "You keep working and keep looking, and maybe it'll end up like it did in '03, when we made two good deals in August that were non-household names in Randall Simon and [Doug] Glanville, and I don't think we win the division without either one of them.
"What we're not going to do is hang our heads," Hendry said. "We're going to keep grinding it out, and I know Lou will keep the guys grinding it out."
Soriano was batting .297 in 104 games, with a team-high 18 home runs and 42 RBIs.
"It's a loss, it really is," Piniella said. "We're going to have to step it up and do without him."
This is a very big blow to the Cubs. He is expected to be out until Sept. 3rd, the team can either do 2 things- fall apart or come together- its time for the cubs to unite and take over the Brewers. If that mean getting more outfield help thru the waiver wire then so be it. Guys who could be available are Johnny Damon, Wily Mo Pena, Ryan Church, Austin Kearns, among others. Lets see Hendry work some magic, Damon would be great, send down Murton have him man CF with Floyd, Jones, Pagan, and Derosa filling in at RF and LF. He is having an off year but he still has pop and speed. Lets face it only a few players can play for the Yanks and succeed. Let Damon grow the beard and hair and let him crash into the brick and ivy and call it a day!
"As for Kielty, who turned 31 yesterday, sources close to the outfielder said that he is weighing his options. The Sox, New York Yankees, Chicago Cubs, Arizona Diamondbacks and Houston Astros are all interested. "
I would love to pick up Kielty. He would be a low risk player who you can sign to a minor league contract and could replace Murton as the 5th outfielder. Kielty in 549 career games is hitting .255 with an OBP of .350 which is good. He has a good glove in the outfield and a decent arm. He is good for about 8 to 10 homers a year if he plays part time. He would be a good pick up for the cubbies!
The Chicago Cubs today placed outfielder Alfonso Soriano on the 15-day disabled list with a right quad strain. In corresponding roster moves, Chicago has selected infielder Eric Patterson from Triple-A Iowa and designated infielder Brian Dopirak, currently at Single-A Daytona, for assignment. In addition, pitcher Wade Miller has been placed on waivers to grant his unconditional release.Miller, 30, was 0-1 with a 10.54 ERA (16 ER/13.2 IP) in three starts for Chicago this season before he landed on the 15-day disabled list with middle back spasms April 23. Signed by the Cubs as a minor league free agent in January of 2006, Miller was transferred to the 60-day disabled list June 26. He went 0-2 with a 4.57 ERA (11 ER/21.2 IP) in five September starts for the Cubs last season.Dopirak, 23, was selected by Chicago in the second round of the 2002 Draft and is hitting .259 (86-for-332) with 16 home runs and 54 RBI between Single-A Daytona and Double-A Tennessee this season. The right-handed hitter was added to the club's 40-man roster in November of 2005.
Its interesting that Dopirak was DFA. The other moves are not to surprising.
CHICAGO -- The Cubs will have to find a new leadoff hitter and some offense from other sources after losing outfielder Alfonso Soriano Sunday night to a strained right quad that could sideline him up to one month.
Soriano had singled with two outs in the Cubs third, the first hit off New York Mets pitcher Tom Glavine. Ryan Theriot then singled to center, and Soriano started running. About four steps after rounding second base, Soriano pulled up and tried to hop to third on his left leg. He was subsequently tagged out by Mets third baseman David Wright.
The 41,599 at Wrigley Field were silent as Soriano was helped off the field.
"A lot of things run through your mind," Chicago's Mark DeRosa said about seeing Soriano limp off the field. "When one of your best players pulls up like that -- you've seen guys pull up before but it seemed like he was in agony. You don't like to see that.
"Somebody is going to have to step up," DeRosa said, "and we're going to have to come together as a team and pick up the slack and hope he gets back as soon as possible but I know it's going to be awhile."
Soriano underwent an MRI on Sunday night.
"He's not going to be out there any time soon," Cubs manager Lou Piniella said. "It's probably going to be a minimum of two weeks and probably as long as a month."
The outfielder, sidelined earlier this season with a strained left hamstring, was batting .297 with 18 homers and 42 RBIs, and his single ended an 0-for-9 streak. He was 21-for-88 in his last 20 games.
The Cubs are one game behind the Milwaukee Brewers in the Central Division, and were hoping Soriano, whom they signed for $136 million this offseason, could get hot in the stretch to help.
"We've got two months left," Chicago's Jason Kendall said. "We have a good enough group of guys in here to keep going. It's part of baseball. You hope he's all right -- but you've got to keep going."
The team struggled last year when Derrek Lee was lost to a wrist injury in mid-April. This Cubs team is different, Lee said.
"We're a lot more talented, a lot deeper," he said. "We can't use [losing Soriano] as an excuse."
The Cubs could call up outfielder Felix Pie from Triple-A Iowa, move Theriot into the leadoff spot, and see if someone can pick up the offensive slack. All of that will likely be decided on the plane ride to Houston, where the Cubs will open a three-game series Monday night. They lost, 8-3, to the Mets and Glavine, who picked up his 300th career win, and finished the homestand against Philadelphia and the first-place Mets, 3-4.
"We would've liked to have done a little better," Piniella said. "We didn't lose any ground but we have to continue to play. Losing Soriano is the toughest thing about this homestand."
Sunday, August 05, 2007
Zambrano Wants To Sign With Cubs
Cubs ace Carlos Zambrano says he's ready to sign; the Cubs just need to put a reasonable contract offer in front of him. He'd sacrifice the chance to hit the open market after the season. It appears that five years and $90MM would get the job done. Zambrano would be likely to exceed Barry Zito's 7/126 on the open market, so this is a discount. He'd still be the highest-paid Cub.
Back in April, it was five years, $80MM. The Cubs have cost themselves $10MM by waiting, and that amount will continue to increase if Zambrano finishes strong and/or actually gets to free agency.
Zambrano has bounced back from a lousy start, and now his numbers are in line with career marks. I have to admit that in May I suggested that even 5/80 was a bad idea for the Cubs. Has Zambrano's performance since then changed my mind? It certainly makes the decision tougher. I don't have a good answer here; it depends on what the Cubs would do with the money if they let Z walk.
If the cubs can get Z for 5 years 90 million they better jump on it! Draw up the contract and have him sign it as soon as possible. If you can get Z for 20 million or less its a steal for the simple fact players like Zito are getting 126 million for 7 years and he is nothing but a average flyball pitcher.. Can you imagine pitchers like Z, Santana, or even Hamels hitting the market??? You might see the most outrageous contracts in baseball history. So sign Z to a 5 year 90 million with a mutual option for the 6th year at an additional 19 million. That my friends is a steal!