Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Extensions, Trades, and Signings... OH MY!

Please excuse the lack of updates via my blog; I have had a busy two months. But here is some updates as rumors heat up-
  • The Cubs and Matt Garza extension talks are going well and it seems like they will eventually ink a deal. A 5 year deal around $85M has been tossed around but a hang up seems to be the no-trade clause. Which that could be significant considering Theo and Co. do not hand those out.
  • Dale Sveum said he had Castro bunt yesterday so they would stay out of the double play even though he knew they would walk LaHair if Castro was successful. The he comes out with the other reason ”Some poor bunting, but it wasn’t as much the bunting as you have to pull back and slash in those situations when they’re charging. It’s hard to get guys to understand that. It’s something you work on and work on, but it kind of speeds up a little during the game. That’s something we have to work on as much as anything because it’s such a prevalent part of the game.”
  • The Washington Nationals have loss 2 catchers in 3 days so insert the Soto rumors. Now while the fit seems obvious there are complications. First; Steve Clevenger has not started swinging a bat yet and it seems Castillo is not going to be an everyday catcher right now. Second; Geovany Soto has been struggling and why would the Nationals want him when they have Jesus Flores along with a lot of “other” catchers in the minors hitting better and fielding better than him. Third; Soto is making $4.3M this season and could make about $6.5M next season which is not good for a fill in spot for the Nationals. They would likely want the Cubs to pay some of his salary which I see the Cubs saying no way. But after saying all that a deal does seem possible if not likely. The Cubs could be planning to cut Soto after this season rather than pay him 6+ million dollars and if they can save some cash this season along with getting a player back they may just do it. Only time will tell.
  • Rumors are circling that Dempster could be drawing interest from several teams but mostly the Red Sox. While it does seem like a fit for the Sox; the Cubs seem unlikely to pull a trigger with the Red Sox weak farm system. But I have been surprised before. Two other teams that have some rumored interest in Dempster are the Atlanta Braves and Toronto Blue Jays.
  • The Cubs have signed Mike MacDougal to a minor league deal to add depth in Iowa. He was released by the Dodgers Sunday.
  • It is likely that Chris Volstad could be on his way out of the rotation but he would have to pass through revocable waivers to be optioned. So it is more likely him landing on the DL or maybe traded if the Cubs grow tired of him. The Cubs have Travis Wood, Casey Coleman, and Chris Rusin who could fill the void if Volstad gets bounced from the rotation.
  • Junior Lake could make his way to Iowa this season if and when Rizzo and/or Jackson get called up. Lake is currently hitting .296 with a .457 OBP a homer, 2 doubles, and 4 runs in 36 plate appearances. Most of his work after the DL stint. Lake is an unusual guy because he has yet to develop defensively or grow into his body at the age of 22. Lake is currently playing SS and 3rd because of his plus-plus arm. If Lake continues to hit, makes it to Iowa this season, and improves defensively at 3rd while seeing some time at 2nd and OF you could see him up in Chicago sometime in 2013.
  • Another side not on Lake (and even Vitters) is the Cubs are going to look really left-handed if they decide to call up BJax, Rizzo, rid them of Soriano, and put LaHair in the outfield. So if you are a young, right handed good hitter that can play 3rd, 2nd, and/or OF then you may find yourself in Chicago a lot sooner.
Until Next Time…

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