Friday, May 25, 2012

Bleacher Nation Knows All & Other Cub Stuff

  • Bleacher Nation has a nice little tidbit on Jorge Soler.
  • Bleacher Nation also has their daily minor league round-up where Luke discusses the Rizzo effect on Lake found here. I have to say I think Luke is right on and I even think Lake could see some time this year in Chicago as a September call-up. I also think there is a strong possibility that Lake is the starting 3rd baseman next season if he continues to perform well.
  • Another think BN notes is the Lake effect on Vitters. I think Vitters is going to be dealt much like Luke does if Lake performs well when he arrives in AAA. This is a make or break year for Josh Vitters as a Cub.
  • Gordon Wittenmyer says that Dempster is unlikely to stand in the way if the Cubs want to trade him. So does anyone think the Red Sox would trade us Will Middlebrooks and Brandon Jacobs for Ryan Dempster, Ian Stewart, and Josh Vitters?
  • The Cubs maybe interested in signing an outfielder next season to bring balance to their potentially heavy lefty lineup. But the only way they would consider signing an outfielder is if they feel Campana is not an everyday player and they deal DeJesus as well as get rid of Soriano. So a lot has to happen between now and then. There are two free agents the Cubs have already “targeted” according to this source and they are Melky Cabrera and B.J. Upton.
  • BN does it again with their 2012 Draft Primer so check that out. FYI; I have the Cubs taking Kevin Gausman with the 6th pick.
  • Brian McCabe of has his Rambling for the Abyss. If you have not checked one of the ramblings before it is good old fashion American fun.
  • A minor league signing came today when the Cubs signed Diory Hernandez to a minor league contract. He was released by the Astro’s Weds.
  • Would Seattle do and Chone Figgins for Alfonso Soriano trade? Figgins owes about half of what Soriano is owed but Sori brings more to the table for Seattle than Figgins does. So I guess maybe, yeah… sure. WHY NOT?
  • Until Next Time…

    Wednesday, May 23, 2012

    Cubs Sites Rocking Some Info...

    Doug Padilla did a chat today so check out the highlights-
    • Epstein will not change his plans by speeding up rebuilding because of the fan base or attendance.
    • The Cubs do plan on calling up Rizzo and BJax to get those early MLB jitters out of the way. They will likely not call them up until the service time is in their favor.
    • Pitching will be a target in June’s draft. (I feel the first overall pick for the Cubs will be an infielder though)
    • He does not have an answer on what the Cubs will do when they call up Rizzo.
    • The likely scenario with Dempster in term of a trade would be to work a deal with a contender for prospects and then present it to Dempster. (Much like what they did with Maddux, but the outcome should be better).
    • He says everyone but Castro, Shark, and Rizzo is available at the trade deadline but it would take a big trade to take away LaHair. The Cubs like the idea of LaHair and Rizzo both in the lineup.
    • The only way the Cubs can deal Soriano is if they eat $40M of his contract which Theo wants to save money by trading him.
    • Vitters is two years away and the Cubs are likely to have Stewart for the rest of this year and the following.
    • Scary thought is Koyie Hill may stay around until Soto comes back. That means when Clevenger is brought back; Lalli will be sent down and when Castillo is activated he may end up back at Iowa to get everyday work. So 6-7 more weeks of Koyie Hill, YIKES!
    • Travis Wood has secured his spot in the rotation for at least the next few starts; the rest is up to him.
    • Sounds like LaHair or Castro is in the lead for the Cubs lone representive in the All-Star game.
    • The only other position on the field besides 1st for LaHair is outfield. 3rd is not possible.
    • Kerry Wood will be around the Cubs organization but he is on mandated family time. He will be back in a month or two to help the bullpen as an extra coach.
    • Campana is a starting CF for years to come says Padilla but he needs quality RBI talent to hit after him to be successful.
    Now onto other news and rumors-
    • Bleacher Nation has a good piece on Soriano found here and has his new Wrigley Field renovation watch found here.
    • Cubs Den has a must read on the Cubs youth and other things to get excited about found here. Cub fans get really excited about Robert Whitenack.
    • With news that the Cubs may go two year with Stewart and hope Vitters proves he is ready in that time has many of my readers asking what if he is not. Well if the Cubs plan on competing in 2014 then they would have to go the trade route or free agency. So notable 2014 3rd base free agents are Michael Young, Martin Prado, Alberto Callaspo, and Chone Figgins. So yeah, hope Vitters is ready by then.
    Until Next Time…

    Tuesday, May 22, 2012

    Rumor Round-Up

    *   The Cubs will call up Travis Wood today and will need to make another move to make room for him.  Sending down a position player like Cardenas makes sense but so does putting Blake Parker or Welington Castillo on the DL.  I guess we will have to wait and see.
    *   LaHair will get a day off today for mental rest according to Sveum.  LaHair is just 1 for his last 19 and his bat has slowed down.  I think scouting reports are catching up to him and he needs to make an adjustment.
    *   Jed Hoyer would not commit on when they will call up Rizzo but he did say he will not jeopardize what they see in the future for what is happening now.  Makes sense.
    *   June 21st is the earliest day the Cubs can call up Rizzo and still have an extra year of control.  After the All-Star break they would get an extra year and avoid super two status.
    *   The Cubs and Nationals were very close to making a trade that would have sent Marlon Byrd, Darwin Barney, and PTBNL for Danny Espinosa and John Lannan.  A few days later Byrd was traded to Boston.
    *   Sveum did not change around the lineup and is going to wait a week to see what develops.  I think a lot of it will hinge on Castillo and Clevenger coming back from their injuries.
    *   The Giants remain the most interested in Soriano.
    *   I had one source tell me that if the Cubs are unable to trade Soriano when ready to call up Rizzo they will likely put LaHair in RF, DeJesus in CF, Rizzo at 1st, and designated Reed Johnson for assignment.  Campana would see time in place of all three.
    *   If Chase Headly does not sign an extension with the Padres before next off-season expect the Cubs to pursue him once again.

    *   Now the latest from Levine-
    - Levine says Hoyer and Epstein will find the right time to trade veterans and get a good return for them.
    - Levine says that the lineup change could come this week with Castro batting 1 or 2 in the lineup.
    - Levine says the Soler issue is taking longer because MLB is making sure he is Jorge Soler.
    - Bruce says he sees the Cubs trading Dempster if he cooperates with the Cubs brass.  He seems like a long shot to be re-signed though.
    - With lack of commitment to Stewart the Cubs might have Josh Vitters, Junior Lake, or Starlin Castro move to 3rd next season.
    -  Levine thinks the Cubs and Castro are getting close on a long-term deal.
    -  Levine does see DeJesus as trade bait.
    -  LaHair may mean more to the Cubs than he is worth to other teams.
    -  Bruce likes Junior Lake's chances for being called up to the big leagues before Vitters and Szczur.  I think he could get moved up to AAA when Rizzo is called up to Chicago.
    -  Levine says the Cubs see Castillo's struggles at calling games but love his power and cannon for a throwing arm.
    -  Bruce says no way Soriano follows Kerry Wood and ends up retiring.
    -  BJax is struggling because he is pressing a bit with anticipation he gets called up this season.
    -  He could see the Cubs letting Dale go after the development period is done but thinks Dale and his coaching staff is impressive.

    Until Next Time....

    Sunday, May 20, 2012

    Lots of Stuff Has Happened!

    So I take a day off of pretty much everything for my son's 1st Birthday Party and a lot of stuff happened.  Still worth it though!  Here is what we missed-

    • If you want a good Kerry Wood run down; your searching has ended at Bleacher Nation/.
    • Randy Wells has been named Kerry Wood's replacement in the pen and it is likely he will be a early inning/long reliever type.  I really hope he can succeed.
    • Clevenger is expected to be activated next weeks sometime but Castillo's sprained knee forced the Cubs hand on making yet another roster move.  The Cubs traded for Koyie Hill.  So yeah... HE'S BAAACCCKKK!
    • Want a run down of the roster moves? The guys up with the big boy club are Blake Lalli, Randy Wells, Koyie Hill, and Blake Parker.  Guy sent down are Chris Volstad and Scott Maine.  Kerry Wood retired and Soto to the DL.
    • Blake Parker could be sent to the DL with a hamstring issue so more moves could be on their way.
    • Travis Wood will be called up on Tuesday to take Volstad's spot in the rotation and a position player will likely be sent down.  It will likely be Cardenas.

    Until Next Time...