Thursday, August 13, 2009

Cubs Look Bad but Hendry WIll Stay Pat?

- Jim Hendry had this to say to the Sun-Times today. Hendry said he's checked the waiver wires for available players daily, ''and there was nothing that made any sense. And I'm not anticipating that it probably would. Hopefully, we're going to survive the injuries.''

No time for hope Hendry, you need to take action. Players like Mark Mulder and John Smoltz can help this team but you chose to ignore that. You chose to go with the Cubs fragile rotation and pen that can't throw strikes over adding someone that can actually help.

You have guys like Fontenot, Baker, Heilman, Miles, and others on this roster that are just a warm body in a Cubs uniform, yet you do nothing about it. Players like Felipe Lopez, Mark DeRosa, Mark Teahen, Joe Biemel, George Sherrill, Jake Peavy, and others were available at the deadline, yet you chose to not pull the trigger on any of those trades. Do not give me the ownership situation had to be resolved, it basically is!

No more excuses! The Cubs are 4.5 games out of first and only ahead of Houston by 3.5 games. You need to do something to shake up this team!

I hate to say it but if this continues why not let Lou go and go with Bob Brenly. He has been making a lot of sense in that TV booth. Saying things that the Cubs should do and disgusted at stuff the Cubs should do fundamentally well. Something needs to change!

- Enough with my rant!'s Jayson Stark says the Cubs could look for another starter and bat depending on how Z, Aram, and Lilly do health wise.

- To the dope that spilled the beer on Shane Victorino, your an idiot! You do not deserve to be in the bleachers.

- Aram should start on Friday, Lilly should be off the DL soon and he is ready, and Z should be ready to pitch by August 21st.

- Bruce Levine said today that Hendry has made a lot of waiver claims but none have worked out. I am guessing Robinson Cano, Doug Davis, and maybe some others that got pulled back.

- Should the Cubs go after Bill Hall as insurance? He makes 6.8 million this year and 8.4 million next season so it is not likely but still possible if the Brewers absorb some of his money.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

A Look to the Offseason..

I know this is pretty early to do an off season thoughts post but the Cubs are not winning or making moves so this is as good as a time as ever.

I think the Cubs do not need to make a big contract splash this off season. They tried to do it last off season with Bradley and Gregg and that was a flop. This off season the Cubs need more versatility, speed, OBP, and better pen arms. The Cubs can do this through trades and signings with spending the same amount this season but on more players. Get more bang for your buck!

1. Get a real Closer. The Cubs need a real Closer, not a guy who "can" Close games. Lucky for the Cubs there are some really good relief guys on the free agent list. I think the Cubs should sign one of Mike Gonzalez, Rafael Soriano, or Jose Valverde. It is time we get a real good closer to finish out these games. With the weak financial status of so many clubs and the new ownership taking place, getting one of these guys for a fair price should be pretty easy.

2. Get a starting 2nd baseman- The Cubs could go many routes with this and get a guy for fairly cheap as well. The players I would target would be-

***Mark Teahen- You all know how much I like Teahen. I think he would be the perfect fit at 2nd base. He played there earlier this season and did very well. Not to mention he would finally provide the power, average, and OBP the Cubs are looking for in the hole that has become 2nd base. In full time duty at Wrigley I can see him hitting .275 with 15 homers, and an OBP of .360. Not to mention you would get him for cheap money wise and probably would just have to give up some young pitching.

*** Orlando Hudson- Should have signed this guy this season. While he is playing really good defense he is also hitting .294 with 7 homers 63 RBI and 7 SB. Did I mention he is a switch hitter and would do really well in the two hole!

***Akinori Iwamura- Some power and a good bat, OBP, and defense. This guy is set to make 4.25 million dollars if the Rays exercise his option. They may chose the buy out with they having financial issues. He would be great in Wrigley as well. A lifetime .283 hitter with a .356 OBP, he is a lot like Fukudome. He would be very good for the Cubs.

***Placido Polanco- Not one of my top picks but defensively he is really good! He could be on the decline and with a nice 2nd base market we could get him for really cheap. He is a lifetime .303 hitter with a .348 OBP. He will hit about 6 homers a year and is one of the best defensive 2nd baseman in the league posting a .990 fielding percentage over his 11 year ML career. He even poster a 1.000 Fielding% in 2007 turning 101 double plays. I really like Polanco!

3. Get a utility guy- The Cubs need one of these guys and had one until they traded him away and now he is a Cardinal. Here are my list of candidates for the Cubs-

*** Chone Figgins- I do not know if Figgins would expect full time playing or a utility position considering how good he is, but the Cubs need to try everything they can to get him. He has stolen 33 bases while hitting .300 this season. Not to mention he has scored 87 runs as well. He could also be a candidate to start at 2nd base.

*** Mark Teahen- Another guy that could be utility or an everyday 2nd baseman. The Cubs need to get this guy regardless. He is a left handed Mark DeRosa.

*** Mark DeRosa- Has said he would come back to the Cubs and the Cubs almost got him back this season until the Cards stole him. DeRosa will probably look for full time duty and the Cards may try to lock him up this off season. I would love for DeRosa to come back.

*** Craig Counsell- I am tired of him always beating the Cubs somehow. He is a gamer, does not complain, just a good clubhouse guy who works hard. The Cubs need more of these players.

***Jamey Carroll - Another gamer who is a good defender and can play everywhere. Would be a cheap effective signing.

***Marco Scutaro- Such a good player and if the Cubs got him I would be really impressed because he will have a lot of suitors this off season. High OBP and decent average and will play everywhere.

***Geoff Blum- This guy can still play. Not my top choice but worth looking at.

***Willie Bloomquist- Another guy that could be available via trade. Could the Cubs get Willie and Mark in the same deal. That would be nice.

4. Outfielder?- The Cubs may need a righty or switch hitting fourth outfielder if Johnson leaves for free agency. I think the Cubs should just resign Johnson but if they do not they should target these players.

*** Johnny Damon- Deserves a starting job somewhere but he could start in CF for the Cubs and make Fukudome be the 4th outfielder or platoon with Bradley in RF. Not likely but would like to see him bat lead off for the Cubs.

*** Andruw Jones- Could he do well in a CF platoon. I think so.

*** Randy Winn- May still try to get a starting job but may have to settle for little money and as a platoon player. Cubs could benefit from that.

*** Marlon Byrd- Not a bad option. Cubs almost traded for him a while back so they should be interested.

The Cubs should just resign Johnson.

5. Get a reliable reliever. The Cubs need one and there is a lot available.

6. Get a veteran starter for the 5th spot in the rotation. Here is a list of 10 candidates-

Andy Pettitte
Randy Wolf
Joel Pineiro
Brett Myers
Doug Davis
Justin Duchscherer
Brad Penny
John Smoltz
Tim Hudson- I wish
Daisuke Matsuzaka- Red Sox will take offers for him this off season and could be traded if he waives his no trade clause. Would the Sox do a Milton Bradley for Dice-K? Bradley is owed 21 million over the next 2 years and Dice-K is owed 28 million over the next three years. If it is an even swap then the Cubs will basically be getting Dice-K for 8 million over the next three years. Just a thought.

Those are the Cubs main needs next season and they should be able to get what they want with the new ownership taking over. If I were the Cubs I would trade for Mark Teahen, sign Chone Figgins, sign Rafael Soriano, resign Reed Johnson, sign Doug Davis, and then sign Octavio Dotel and Darrin Oliver to revamp the pen.

I also think they should trade, release, or send down these players.

Aaron Miles
Mike Fontenot
Jeff Baker
David Patton


1. Figgins 2b
2. Theriot SS
3. Lee 1st
4. Aram 3rd
5. Bradley
6. Soriano
7. Fukudome
8. Soto


Mark Teahen OF/IF
Koyie Hill C
Reed Johnson OF
Andres Blanco SS/2b
Jake Fox IF/OF




Soriano CL

That in my opinion should be the 2010 Cubs. Looks like a winner to me! The Cubs payroll with no additions, no trades, and no arbitration given they will start the 2010 off season with 119 million on the books. I think the new additions the Cubs would add about 25-35 million in just new contracts for 2010 (which is not bad for adding 6 new players and resigning one).

What do you think? Who would you add or subtract?

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Smoltz Chicago Bound? Other Notes....

- The Cubs have reportedly talked to the Red Sox about John Smoltz. Smoltz recently cleared waivers and could be dealt to any team. The Cubs do not want to take on his current salary so the Red Sox would have to eat the majority of his salary or take on a player with a similar salary. The Cubs could deal Aaron Heilman, Jeff Baker, or Aaron Miles, or get Smoltz for a PTBNL and have the Sox pay a portion of his contract.

If the Cubs could get Smoltz for Jeff Baker or Aaron Miles, that would be a great present for them. It should also be noted that the Cubs view Smoltz as a reliever not a starter although his versatility and the Cubs fragile rotation could change that.

- The Cubs could look at Nomar for better middle infield depth. The Cubs front office do not like the Baker/Miles/Fontenot situation at 2nd base and it is rumored that Hendry is looking to upgrade. So they could take a chance on Nomar at 2nd base, where he has never played or switch Theriot to 2nd and put Nomar at SS. That would be a risk as well!

- Gorzelanny's hurt foot is not that bad and he should make his next start.

- Esmailin Caridad can throw hard and looks pretty good!

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Cubs Notes....

- Big Z is on the DL and will miss about 2 starts and Shark will step in for one of his starts. Jeff Stevens was called up in his place.

- Aramis is day to day with a sore shoulder. It is not as serious as it looked, just a bit sore because he over extended. He did not play today though.

- Lilly threw well in a pen session today and is two weeks away. While Reed is 3 weeks away from returning.

- The Cubs are one of many teams interested in Smoltz but do not expect them to trade for him. The Cubs do not want to take on his salary and give up a player for him. They will wait until he is released.

- It is not know whether the Cubs have put or claimed anyone on waivers. It is likely they have but we do not know about it yet.

- Interesting note, Josh Vitters has made few starts or appearances lately. He played on the 27th of July then appeared in a game today as a pinch hitter with no ABs in between. That is a long time in between plate appearances.

- Lou got ejected today because of a blow call at 2nd base. Here is the clip on