A League of Her Own

Saturday Chicago Cubs Headlines

Nationals-Brewers

Guess what? I've got a new (old) rumor for you!

Center fielder Mike Cameron could take center stage for the Cubs by the time the winter meetings begin Monday in Indianapolis, depending on how quickly they can slam the door on Milton Bradley's tail and how much room is left in the payroll. What's clear is the Cubs' interest and the strength of manager Lou Piniella's relationship with Cameron, who spent the past two seasons with Milwaukee.

''I love the guy,'' Piniella said Friday night in Cincinnati during a reunion event for the 1990 World Series champions at the annual Redsfest. ''Mike is somebody we've talked about. I'm looking forward to Sunday, [when team officials meet before] the meetings over in Indianapolis.''

Cameron, who turns 37 next month and has said he wants to sign with a contender, expressed similar regard for Piniella during a conversation late in the season.

Setting aside the fact that Mike Cameron is 37 years old, let's take a look at his line for last season:

2009: .250/.342/.452/.795

This is actually better than his career line of .250/.340/.448/.748

Once again, I give you Milton Bradley's career line: .277/.371/.450/.821

Ahem. 

In other news:

The Cubs expect to announce a decision next month on whether to leave their spring training home in Arizona for the Naples, Fla., area. A move could put the Cubs in their new digs for spring 2012, said team president Crane Kenney, who added ''the deciding factor will be training for the players. ... If it's a push on all other fronts, where we can train the players to perform the best is where we will go.''

The Ricketts family didn't waste much time in raising ticket prices. Hopefully, they'll use this extra dough to go after a DECENT* free agent.

Club box outfield seats will increase by nearly 19 percent for so-called "platinum" games, a new ticket price tier that was introduced in 2009, and will nearly double from 14 games to 26 next year.

The most expensive seat will be a platinum club infield box, which was raised by $12, or a 12 percent increase from $100 to $112. The cheapest tickets will be $9 for an upper deck outfield reserved seat for one of the six "bronze" games on weekdays in April, May and September.

The Cubs maintain that half of the ticket inventory will remain about the same, while the average price increase will be $2 for "gold" games and $5 for "platinum" games. A 1 percent rise in the city amusement tax, from 11 to 12 percent, also figured into the price hike.

Ah well, at least they left the cheap seats alone.

(*DECENT does not refer to any crappy former Cardinals. See, e.g. Miles, Aaron)

Tom also has some renovations planned for Wrigley:

The Cubs are making several changes at Wrigley Field in 2010, including a "refacing" of the back of the historic center-field scoreboard.

"The facing itself is literally falling apart, and it's an important part (of Wrigley Field), it's iconic for us," president Crane Kenney said. "We're tearing it all apart and rebuilding it."

The front of the scoreboard will remain the same. The back has a neon sign that says "Chicago Cubs," which will remain the same. There will be no ads put on the back of the scoreboard for now.

(snip)

The Cubs are also knocking down the walls of six suites in the left-field corner and building a club on the mezzanine level. The club, which is expected to be sponsored, will be open to those who buy season tickets in groups of two and fours. It will be somewhat akin to the Stadium Club in the right field corner of U.S. Cellular Field, though the capacity will be around 80 because of the smaller size.

Another addition, for the short term, will be a temporary skating rink being built on corner of Clark and Waveland Avenues, west of the ballpark. The rink will be operated by the Chicago Park District. A price has not been announced, though it's expected to be no more than $5 per skater.

Ah, okay. Whatever. Just get some decent players in here.

Finally, Carrie Muskat tells us that there are not one, not two, BUT THREE teams that want to take Crazy Uncle Milty to prom. I wonder if that could have anything to do with his career line being so much better than most other players'?

It appears as many as three teams are interested in Milton Bradley, and GM Jim Hendry will spend next week at the Winter Meetings in Indianapolis trying to find the right match.

The Cubs may be able to take care of some of the items on Hendry's wish list with the right trade. The tweaks are minor for 2010, and include finding a center fielder, a veteran right-handed reliever, and a right-handed bench player who could play the outfield.

Bradley would seem to be difficult to move, partly because he is owed $21 million over the next two years and because of his lack of production on the field. But other teams have players and contracts that, for whatever reason, they want to move as well. The Cubs also could take on a player in exchange for Bradley, and then deal that player to another club.

And Carrie gives us a reason to keep hope alive:

As for center field, it would seem that Reed Johnson would be a perfect fit for the Cubs. The Cubs did not want to offer him arbitration because of budget limitations. But that doesn't mean Johnson can't come back. If he can't find a better deal as a free agent, expect the two sides to resume talks.

SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAL!!!

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13 Comments

JulieDiCaro said:

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The Twitter rumor right now is that a 3-way Bradley/Castillo/Burrell trade is about to go down. Trying to get confirmation on this . . .

JulieDiCaro said:

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So the rumor I'm getting from Doc_Blume is Bradley to the Rays, Castillo to the Cubs, and Burrell to the Mets. But I think he might be getting this rumor from me, so it's entirely possible that Doc and I came up with this trade all on our own.

phillies80-08wschamps said:

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I CAN SEE BURRELL GOING TO CUBS NOT METS AS BURRELL IS A PHILLIES FAN , STILLLOVES THE PHILLIES AND HATES THE CHOKING METS, IF HE WENT 2 CUBS ATLEAST IT WOULD NOT BE IN PHILS DIVISION, YOU NEED 2 FIND A BETTER SOURCE W/COMMON SENSE!!!!!!!!

phillies80-08wschamps said:

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ALSO BURELL WOULD NOT RESPOND WELL IN NY AS HE DOES NOT HANDLE BOOS VERY WELL AND HE GOES IN DASTIC SLUMPS, NY FANS WOULD EAT HIM ALIVE LIKE PARAHNAS!!!!!!! I AND ALL PHILLY FANS WOULD NOT WISH THAT ON PAT AS HE IS STILL LOVED IN PHILLY, I WOULD LOVE TO SEE HIM ON ANGELES AS THEY ARE SUCESSFUL AND FANS NOT BRUTAL LIKE NY

phillies80-08wschamps said:

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AND CUBBIEJULIE IF MY CAPS BOTHER YOUR EYES GO BUY A PAIR OF SUNGLASSES

AndCounting said:

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I really hope the Castillo deal doesn't go down. I'm not a fan of acquiring Burrell, but I'd rather have him than Castillo.

I feel like napping all day. I really don't want to wake up to hearing Castillo is our new Miles (and Burrell is the Mets' Jake Fox).

JulieDiCaro said:

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I've heard nothing from the guys at WFAN since this was tweeted this morning, and neither has George Ofman at WGN, so I'm calling shenenigans on this whole rumor. Maybe it will happen (I hope not) but it doesn't look like it'll be today, at any rate.

This rumor makes my stomach hurt. Luis Castillo? Blah.

AndCounting said:

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I hadn't heard the rumor that Adrian Gonzalez could be headed to the White Sox in a three-way deal that would bring Konerko to the Angels.

It would be a bit annoying if the Sox landed Peavy and Gonzalez, but I'd have to stand and applaud Kenny Williams if he can pull it off. If Gonzalez heads to the Cell, he will put up ridiculously gaudy numbers. Good for them.

Perkins said:

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Gonzalez would be a significant improvement over Konerko. That'd be a great deal for the Sox. I can only imagine the numbers he'd put up with 81 games at the Cell instead of Petco Park.

Perkins said:

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Here's an idea for the 2010 Cubs, since management seems intent to catch lightning in a bottle: sign Ben Sheets. He'll probably be pretty cheap and has significant upside. If he ends up sucking or being injured, well the Cubs probably won't be very good anyway next year.

Also, Cameron is still valuable because he's a very good defender, but I still say keeping Bradley and finding a way to make it work would be the best baseball decision for the Cubs.

JulieDiCaro said:

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For those of you on Twitter, there's now a Dawson4TheHall twibbon for your avatar.

JulieDiCaro said:

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BTW--I still have two Google Wave invites left. . . email me if you want one: leagueofherown (at) gmail (dot) com.

summerguy said:

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Oh good god... please not Luis Castillo.

We could have used him in, oh, 2003... NOT 2010.

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