Saturday, March 10, 2012

You Cut Some, You Call Out Some, and You Could Move Some...

- Want a recap of yesterdays game???  Go visit

-  The Cubs have sent Trey McNutt, Jae-Hoon Ha, Marco Cirrillo, and Jonathan Mota to minor league camp.  They were the first four to be cut out of camp putting the number of players to 59.

-  Love this quote from Sutcliffe-

 “There’s some nice things going on here,” he said. “I wasn’t here last year. I wasn’t on board with what was happening and I love the Cubs, pull for them, but I didn’t feel I was welcome. I’ve been around the Phillies and the Yankees, and when you go down to a bullpen and watch five or six guys throw, you sit back and almost every other guy, you go ‘Wow, he’s got a chance.’ There wasn’t a whole lot of ‘wow’ going on here [in Cubs camp]. It was disappointing. You’ve got to know where you’re at to get better …. There’s the truth and the fact that this is a mess. To me, the chain of command was broke, people were going in different directions with no leadership. There’s leadership now.”

- It really seems like Jaramillo will have no shot at the backup role with the Cubs which is why Clevenger is now the leader in the club house.

-  Seeing all the negative comments by Aramis Ramirez really upsets me as a Cubs fan.  He was one of my favorite Cubs but now my view of him is really being skewed.  I just have no respect for players that completely trash their former team like spoiled little brats.

-  The Cubs are really hoping Marmol gets his control back (though he really never had good control) for multiple reasons including helping his trade value.

-  I recently read a post on message board that makes a ton of sense.  The premise behind the post is the Cubs are better off signing Garza to an extension during Spring Training and then dealing him at the deadline.  He stats the Cubs could get a lot more (if they are out of contention) for Garza at the deadline than now.  He stats the added wild card team increases the chances of a team making the playoffs which means more buyers and less sellers.  Which in turn means less supply of elite players and more demand for them causing cost to rise.  He even thinks if the Tigers are in the race and want to add Garza it is going to likely going to cost them Turner, Smiley, and Castellanos simply because other teams will be offering a strong package as well.  He also goes on and says he sees the Angels being big players and maybe offering Mike Trout Jean Segura, and  Garrett Richards for Garza.  I really hope this guys is right!

-  Want to know one player the Cubs are interesting in on taking their 1st round pick? Trey Williams tops their list.

-  More pictures from the Boys of Spring found here.

-  Cubs Den asked if Randy Wells could be traded this spring which is found here.

Until Next Time...

Friday, March 09, 2012

Help Hot Stove Cubbies Take The Next Step!

A message to all HSC loyal followers:

I’m excited to announce some upcoming changes for Hot Stove Cubbies!

6 years ago when I started Hot Stove Cubbies my goal was to bring the reader the most up-to-date stories, rumor write-ups, opinions, and many other features because of my love for the Chicago Cubs. I have always wanted to make sure the reader is satisfied with the content because you have helped shape this site and make it successful.

HSC has been looking into new avenues to make this site more interactive for the reader. I am considering adding a HSC Message Board, a possible transition from Blog to website, even an app for iphone and/or Android users, the possibilities really are endless. While all these things are great, unfortunately they can become quite costly! I recently added a new feature to the HSC Blog where you can “donate” to the Blog to make these new ideas for HSC a reality. The donation feature and the addition of advertisements will never affect the integrity of the site nor will HSC ever become a pay site. This site was designed for the die hard, Cubbie-blue blooded Cubs fans, like myself, to enjoy without ever having strings attached.

You, the reader, can make Hot Stove Cubbies as successful as you want it to be. The more successful HSC is, the more content and expansion the site can do. I want to say a deep hearted thank you to ALL the people that have made Hot Stove Cubbies a part of their internet lives and say I am very excited to take the next big step forward with you right by my side.

Warm Regards,

Hot Stove Cubbies

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

A Challenge on the 25 Man Roster

Here is a Cubs fan 25 man roster for Opening Day. His name is Jason and he has put his roster against mine (which we will revisit by Opening Day). Look at his list and then look at mine found

Position Players

C- Soto
C- Clevenger
1B- Lahair
UTIL- Baker
2B- Barney
SS- Castro
3B- Stewart
LF- Soriano
CF- Byrd
RF- DeJesus
OF- Johnson
OF- Campana











Here some reasoning from Jason-

- Jason believes Sonnanstine will gain a spot because they are in need for a long reliever and he is on the roster right now. He also believes the Cubs will not carry 3 lefties.

- Jason says there is no way Jaramillo beats out Clevenger because he is an all around better player not to mention younger. He views Clevenger as an all around better version of Koyie Hill and nothing more than Soto (and eventually Castillo's) backup. Also says Jaramillo getting injured does not help his cause.

- He believes that Cardenas has no shot to beat out Barney at 2nd.

- He thinks Wells will be very good this year and that Volstad will start the year in Iowa.

- He says he would like to put Samardzija in the rotation but he is better served in the pen.

- Dolis and Sonnanstine were difficult decisions for his last two spots in the pen but feels both will make the team.

- Could see Sappelt beating out Campana but went with his gut and picked Tony.

- He thinks I am crazy to think Trever Miller makes the team because Maine and Gaub are better.

SOOOO What do you think?

Until Next Time...

Quick Hits and the Iowa Cubs Will Be Good!!!

Some quick hits-

-Brett Jackson will not ride the bench in Chicago. Out of Spring Training he will either be a starter in the outfield or starting in Iowa.

-Sveum does not think Junior Lake can stay at SS because of his size.

-To further what I predicted on the 25 man roster yesterday the Cubs are really high on Cardenas.

-Here is a run down of yesterdays win for the Chicago Cubs from BleacherNation.

-More pics from the BoysofSpring.

-Check out We Are Baseball GMs for some Cubs extension talk.

Side Note-

So the Iowa Cubs have the potential to have a great team this season. With all the young talent in the Chicago Cubs camp it is likely some of them will stay in Chicago. But others will likely go to Iowa or Tenn. So, I am going to run down the best possible lineup and rotation for the Iowa Cubs based on my 25 man roster posted yesterday. I do realize that some of these players maybe ticketed for Tennessee but for sake of argument I will build this lineup with the best possible players from Cubs camp not making the 25 man roster.


1. Matt Szczur RF
2. Brett Jackson CF
3. Josh Vitters 3b
4. Anthony Rizzo 1st
5. Junior Lake SS
6. Blake DeWitt 2b
7. Welington Castillo C
8. David Sappelt LF


1. Trey McNutt RHP
2. Randy Wells RHP
3. Chris Rusin LHP
4. Casey Coleman RHP
5. Alberto Cabrera RHP

With this team I think the Iowa Cubs (if this team remains basically the same the whole season (which is unlikely)) win at least 80 games and 95 wins is not crazy. A lineup that has a great right/lefty balance, full of rising stars, and top prospects gives you a legit reason to be excited. A rotation that has big league experience and young talent mixed through out that will be unmatched by any other team.

If this team is constructed how it is shown above it is possible the people of Iowa see 8 players this year that will be with the big league club this season or the following year. One thing is for sure it will give the people of Iowa a taste of the major leagues right in their backyard.

Until Next Time…

Monday, March 05, 2012

Figuring Out the 25 Man Roster...

With only a couple of games under the Cubs belt I am going to do my 25 man roster prediction. This year is going to be more difficult than most for the bullpen and bench because of the amount of young players and invitees there are. All predictions are subjected to change in case of an injury or baseball transaction.

Position Players-
1. Geovany Soto
2. Jason Jaramillo
3. Jeff Baker
4. Darwin Barney
5. Adrian Cardenas
6. Starlin Castro
7. Bryan LaHair
8. Ian Stewart
9. Marlon Byrd
10. Tony Campana
11. David DeJesus
12. Reed Johnson
13. Alfonso Soriano

1. Matt Garza
2. Ryan Dempster
3. Travis Wood
4. Chris Volstad
5. Paul Maholm
6. Kerry Wood
7. Carlos Marmol
8. Jeff Samardzija
9. James Russel
l10. Jeff Beliveau
11. Casey Weathers
12. Trever Miller

Out of this 25 man-roster I have the following lineup, bench, rotation, and bullpen.


1. David DeJesus RF
2. Marlon Byrd CF
3. Starlin Castro SS
4. Bryan LaHair 1st
5. Alfonso Soriano LF
6.Ian Stewart 3rd
7. Geovany Soto C
8. Adrian Cardenas 2b


Jason Jaramillo C
Jeff Baker IF/OF
Darwin Barney MIF
Reed Johnson OF
Tony Campana OF


1. Matt Garza
2. Ryan Dempster
3. Paul Maholm
4. Chris Volstad
5.Travis Wood


Carlos Marmol-Closer
Kerry Wood-Set-up
Jeff Samardzija-Set-up/ Long Right Reliever
Jeff Beliveau –Lefty Set-up
James Russell -Lefty Specialist/Long Lefty Reliever
Casey Weathers -RHP Middle Reliever
Trever Miller –LHP Middle Reliever

Some notes and questions answered on whats above-

- Adrian Cardenas over Darwin Barney this Spring? Cardenas is younger, has more upside, and hits from the left side. There is already talk about Jaramillo and Adrian working together that has shown an increase in bat speed and power. Plus the Cubs need a backup SS which Barney can fill from the bench.

- I thought Shark would start? NOPE! Jeff Samardzija will not be too happy because Chris Volstad will beat him out for a spot in the rotation. The other two “open” spot are not open, they are reserved for Maholm and Wood. The Cubs already said they want to go with 2 lefties in the rotation to start the season. This means Shark will end up in the pen.

- Where is Wells? If could be worst Jeff you could end up in Iowa or traded like Randy Wells will be before Opening Day. I just don’t see him securing a spot with Volstad making the rotation and Shark moving to the pen.

- Casey Weathers, Jeff Beliveau, and Trever Miller make the team??? Yes, they do because Weathers has a great arm and will show it off in Spring securing his spot in the pen. Beliveau will get his control under wraps and net himself the big lefty in the pen. Miller will also land a spot because of his veteran leadership and the fact Sveum wants three lefties in the pen. Gaub, Rusein, and Maine I just do not see making the team. If the Cubs back off the demand for three lefties then you could see a guy like Randy Wells, Manny Corpas, Rafael Dolis, Casey Coleman, or Andy Sonnanstein make the team by way of the pen. Otherwise this is how I see the bullpen shaping out.

- Volstad makes the rotation?? Yes he does! He finally lives up to his potential in Spring Training thus winning him a spot in the rotation.

- Why no Castillo or Clevenger? You will hear a familiar tone come out of Cubs camp for this one. “Both need regular Ab’s and playing time in the minors.” Which means the Cubs don’t want either as a back-up to Soto; so Jaramillo wins by default.

- Campana over Sappelt? My hardest decision by far. I think Sappelt offers more but Campana gets the nod for his speed and what he brings off the bench.

Other Thoughts...

- If Byrd is traded it means the Cubs are ready for Brett Jackson to take over CF in Chicago

- If you start seeing LaHair get time in the OF then they may have Rizzo start the year in Chicago not Iowa. Until Next Time…

Sunday, March 04, 2012

Some Cubs Talk...

- I was not going to hit on the inter squad games because they "really don't mean anything" but I thought it would be worth noting Matt Szczur big day which included a grand slam and a tag and score from 2nd base on a ball to the outfield.

- Sveum suggested he is strongly considering batting Castro 3rd and (gulp) sees Soriano as a possible fit in the leadoff spot. Normally I would rip that idea but Soriano actually does much better out of the leadoff spot than he does anywhere else. I still prefer DeJesus or Barney leading off.

- Phil Rogers says the Cubs will likely trade Soto before the 2013 season because they are greatly effected by the Molina 5 year $75M extension. I can understand the logic because Soto will make a lot of money next season but I think regardless of Molina's deal he would have been still trade bait.

- BleacherNation has the breakdown of Theo on the radio a few days ago so check it out!

- TheCubsReporter has the breakdown of yesterdays inter squad game so check that out as well.

- Dale Sveum is in favor of extended playoffs which is to be expected because it gives his Cubs a better chance to make those playoffs.

- The Indians are interested in Marlon Byrd or Tony Campana to fill their vacancy in CF since Sizemore's recent injury. I would assume the Indians have more interest in Byrd than Campana because of his defense and power but would like Campana's speed and price much better.

- Shark may end up in the pen but that is only if he does not prove himself as a starter in Spring Training.

- Here is the lineup for the Cubs first spring game-
1. Soriano LF
2. Stewart 3rd
3. Castro SS
4. LaHair 1st
5. Byrd CF
6. David DeJesus RF
7. Jeff Baker DH
8. Darwin Barney 2b
9. Welington Castillo C

Not a bad lineup but I do not see it as the everyday line-up of course. Soto is still out with a "mild groin strain."

- BoysOfSpring has more great pictures of Spring action Cubs style.

- WeAreBaseballGMs has so good insight, predictions, and write-ups so check them out.

Until Next Time...