Cubs Offseason Notes: Baez hurt, non-tender candidates, KBO pitcher to post

As you are probably aware, there have been some site problems the past couple of days, so I apologize for the issues with comments.  Let's start off with some quick notes on some Cubs related news of late...

  • Javier Baez hurt his thumb yesterday and will not play for the rest of the fall league.  According to Paul Sullivan of the Tribune, a source said that Baez may have fractured the tip of his thumb in an off the field celebration.  He will be ready for spring training, however.
  • If you're interested in whom the Cubs may take on as flyers, check out MLBTradeRumors non-tender candidate list.  Last year Ian Stewart and Chris Volstad were on that list and the Cubs were able to get them relatively cheaply through trade.  Neither worked out, but it is perhaps a better way to get a younger, talented player who is still in his prime.  The issue is that there is a reason they're being considered for non-tender, as the Cubs found out with both players last season.  We'll have a separate article on possible candidates later.
  • KBO star LHP Ryu Hyun-Jin will post and sign with an MLB team, according to his agent Scott Boras.  As a pitcher who will turn 26 this March, Ryu is still in his prime physically.  He is 6'2", 215 pounds so he has good size, though probably not an ideal build.   His fastball sits around 90 mph and peaks at 93 and has a full assortment of pitches, the best of which is a plus changeup.  The Cubs do a tremendous job in the Pacific Rim, especially in Korea, so you have to figure they've already taken a long look and should at least inquire on the pitcher given the state of their pitching staff.  Ryu will be posted via silent auction so, much like Darvish, we won't know who wins the bid until it's actually announced.  Ryu isn't the same caliber of pitcher as Darvish but he can eat some innings as a 3rd or 4th starter.  I don't have detailed scouting info on him or what he would cost, but on the surface he seems like a potential good short and long term fit.
  • One pitcher I had my eye on, Scott Baker, had his option declined with the Twins but it appears the two sides are trying to work out a deal.  Similarly, the Angels will probably not exercise the option on either Dan Haren or Ervin Santana, but GM Jerry Dipoto says that the Angels may look to pick up one or both of the options and then possibly try and work out a deal.  Should the Cubs be interested?  It depends on the price tag.  They aren't likely to be a part of the Cubs long term future, so it doesn't make sense for them to give up to much to acquire them.  But they would be overpaid pitchers on a one-term deal, so the market may not be that big.  The Cubs have plenty of room on their short term payroll, so they'd be willing to take on money over giving up top young players.

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  • Thanks, John. I hope Baez's thumb heals quickly. Another of those "off-the-field injuries that happen too often....
    BTW, I saw on MLB News that the Gold Glove finalists were named. Darwin Barney is one of three for 2b, with Aaron Hill and of course Tony Phillips. But Phillips was the subject of the lead video for the entire article, reinforcing the hidebound, old-boy nature of the competition. Winners to be named today.
    My biggest laff -- at 3b, one finalist was.....Aramis Ramirez !?!

  • In reply to StillMissKennyHubbs:

    Thanks. I almost added that Barney item as part of the notes but with the Gold Glove coming later I decide to wait. I think we would have been stunned if Barney was not a finalist.

    Ramirez a GG candidate? Wow. I haven't seen enough of him but he didn't exactly shine when he played the Cubs.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I thought Ramirez improved a lot during his tenure with the Cubs. I heard many times that he worked hard on his defense and took pride in its progress.

  • In reply to SFToby:

    He did improve but then declined at the end again. Didn't look to great when he played against the Cubs this year either.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    After I moved from Chicago I lost the Chance to see most Cub games. :=(

  • Would love to see them go after Haren. The Angels have to pay him 3.5 mil. even if they don't pick up the option. So they have incentive to trade him. He was really quite good in September, after fighting back issues most of the season.
    One big advantage the Cubs have is the ability to take on a 15 mil. salary this season. And of course it leaves open the turn a short term asset into a long term asset scenario mid season.
    They say that Haren wants to stay in SoCal though, so he may work out something with the Angels.

  • It really is hard to imagine these guys leaving California for a losing team Chicago. The Cubs have two things to offer right now: short term money and opportunity. With a guy like Haren he can probably get both elsewhere. The Cubs may have to dig deeper to find their guy.

  • I don't have a problem with Phillips if he wins the Gold Glove, he is great.
    For the coaches and managers who voted Ryan Braun as a better left fielder this season than Soriano, I ask what were they doing during the ballgames, because they sure as heck were not watching them.
    And Ramirez even being nominated shows that it has become kind of a garbage award anyway. I hope he wins it, make a total joke of the whole thing.

  • John, curious if you read Dave Cameron's free agency primer on FanGraphs today? Specifically what you think about his "sign and trade" idea? I've been thinking/hoping the Cubs try something like he suggests.

  • In reply to CubsML:

    I did. It's an excellent piece that explains the process very well. Sign and trade would be interesting, but like Dave, I don't think it's going to happen. Union would love it, but owners worked pretty hard to close loopholes so not sure they want to introduce that one.

  • I could see the Cubs going after several pitchers on the list including Jurrjens, Hunter, and Braden. As for the position players....outside of Sean Rodriguez and Sam Fuld, there is no one of any potential value.

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