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Looking ahead....WAY ahead!

Looking ahead....WAY ahead!

First, the good news. Happy New Year and good cheer to all Cubs Den readers. Joining John and Tom this year and interacting with you fine fellows has been a highlight of my 2012.  While having to watch and write about Jason Berken pitched games was hard on all 7 of us that actually bothered, knowing that there was a pocket full of friends waiting to discuss it with me (Even if it was a count down to this supposed organization changing #2 pick, but whatever.) helped the summer stroll by. Hope you’re 2012 goes out like an exploding Jeff Samardjiza fastball.

 

Now the bad news. 2013 is going to look a lot like 2012. A. LOT. And while most of us look forward to seeing what the next day, next game, heck, even next pitch might bring, the truth is you can almost write down what’s going to happen. In fact, that’s exactly what I’m going to do.

 

January- With Epstoyer doing an exemplary job of shoring up the pitching staff, they will now turn their attention to the 800 lb. gorilla in the room with the 18 oz bat- the offense. Which sucks.  Marmol will be traded. Perhaps even Soriano.  Maybe even Brett Jackson. (Brett Jackson for Dominic Brown in a classic “change of scenery” trade… who says no?). In the end a new outfielder will be here and maybe even another free agent bat signed. And while it will be argued whether the offense is improved, it will at least be different.

 

February- Ahhh Spring Training is almost here, and Cubs Den reports are sporadic as John Arguello secretly shops around for housing in Arizona as he attempts to become the next Keith Law. Distractions aplenty as the Cubs open camp with Crane Kenny making some statements about the new facilities followed by hundreds of Cub fans complaining that Crane Kenny shouldn’t be in front of any microphones, shouldn’t be in Arizona, and basically just shouldn’t be… Crane will then suit up and attempt to complete running drills a la Willie Mays Hayes in “Major league” only to pull both hamstrings and rip up both ACL’s MCL’s and MC5’s…. Thanks for playing Crane.

 

March- Junior Lake not only makes the team, he’s the starting left fielder. Arguello then posts the 700 pages of prior postings about Lake from the previous 2 years, allowing Arguello to close on a house, buy a couple of radar guns and load up on note pads.  Jeff Samardzija is named opening day starter, and many speculate that it’s all a ploy lower Garza contract demands while several others feel it’s a precursor to a trade.

 

April- Cubs win their opener 11-5. Garza hits Shark in the face with a pie, leading several to wonder whether Garza was intentionally trying to injure Shark out of jealousy. As is custom Cubs fans and media will over analyze the first 15 games of April, and then make ridiculously false statements based off the Cubs going 6-9 in those games. This will cause me to write every wrap with the Same Stones quote, the same Lebowski quote, and the same cheap shot at Hoosier Daddy. In turn, newly appointed Cubs Den editor in chief Tom Loxas to suspend me and send out a search party to Arizona to find Arguello.

 

May- After being re-instated, I’m treated to wrapping Cubs games in which they have their first winning month under the Theo/Jed/Pi/Epsilon management team. This causes The Kapman to hold three days of “is the Cubs rebuilding plan ahead of schedule?” CTL’s. Paul Sullivan, Bartender Frankie-O and Todd Hollandsworth debate this topic non-stop. Unfortunately, the only thing they can agree on is that Kap has the best tailor in the city...

 

June- Arguello returns from Arizona, realizing that 120-degree days and Scotch is a bad thing. He takes up residence in Kane County, where Dan Voglebach is averaging a home run every 10 at bats. Enthusiasm is tempered when it was learned between games of a double header; Heavy D ate an entire cow. And nobody notices because everyone is focused on the draft. Unfortunately, Manea, Appel, and Stanek have read their own press clippings and have priced themselves right out of the Cubs plans. The Cubs draft another high school center fielder, and I laugh, and laugh, and laugh…
July- Trade deadline time. And the biggest name leaving the Cubs is David Dejesus. Causing Hoosier Daddy, me and several others to wear black armbands in memoriam of Kim Dejesus leaving the City. Also, the world spins off it's axis and there's a loud crack in the earth as Paul Sullivan writes an article that's actually both informative and entertaining...

 

August- Cubs once again go on a post trade deadline swoon. Vizcaino is brought up and inserted into the rotation despite having an ERA of 5.19 and a 1.643 WHIP in Iowa. His first start is okay but he gets roughed up in the next two outings, forcing a switch to the bullpen where hestays and wins the closer's job. His starting struggles are blamed on Ryan Dempster and his awful Harry Carry impersonation.

 

September- Josh Vitters gets called up and hits .380/.388/.460. He also has 8 errors in 10 games, including one where he hits his own pitcher with a throw. But it’s good enough that it forces Sveum to move Valbuena to 2nd base, Barney to SS, and Castro to CF. Sveum says the moves are designed to get Valbuena more at-bats…

 

October- Dusty Baker’s Reds go up 3-0 on the Detroit Tigers and are leading 7-0 in the sixth when Dusty decides to give Alroldis Chapman 1 more inning (his 235th of the season) The Tigers score 4 runs in the 6th, go on to complete the comeback and become the first team to win a world series when down 3-0.

 

November- John Arguello is elected mayor of Geneva, Il. as the Cubs head into year 3 of the re-build. Jed Hoyer goes on all the radio stations and TV shows claiming this is the year they spend money in order to bring a winning championship to the North Side and their great fans. Bob Nightengale reports that the Cubs have a verbal agreement with Robinson Cano. Three days later, he signs with the Red Sox.

 

December- Tom Ricketts decides Wrigley Field is indeed too antiquated and outdated for a 21st century baseball team and moves the team to……Kane County, where the mayor has given them a sweetheart deal on parking, concessions, the whole nine yards. The only conditions are that the mayor be hired as head of scouting, and Dan Voglebach must play first base.

 

Should be a hell of a year. Can’t wait for it to get started.

Filed under: Uncategorized

Tags: Cubs, Future, John Arguello

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  • fb_avatar

    Cool pic Felzzy! How did you get your eyes to do that?

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    It's a subconscious reflex when he goes into a deep trance.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    More like watching Dale pointing towards Dolis to come in to pitch the 9th inning for the Cubs in 2012.

  • Felzz, thanks a lot. Fun read & happy new year to everyone!

    Speaking of which, I hear that AAA is offering a Tipsy Tow - they will not only give you a free ride home plus will tow your car home as well, from 6PM to 6AM new years eve/day. This is a nation wide offer, just call 1-800-222-4375. Keep the number handy in case you or your driver get over served. I'm guessing that you may have to wait a while.

  • Typo alert! Correct number is 1-800-222-4357. Dyslexia is a bitch.

  • In reply to SFToby:

    Thanks Toby! I may need that tonight :) We'll be really close to home though. Cheap cab ride if needed.

  • Nice post Felzz. I wonder how much of that will actually happen. I sure some will.

  • Happy New Year everyone!

  • My favorite part was that Felzz didn't just predict Vizcaino's WHIP, but he predicted it to an EXTRA decimal.

    That's conviction in your prediction.

  • In reply to Steve4cash:

    LOL!

  • Yes. Conviction........ that's exactly what it was..... Of course I know everyone's hyper-WHIP numbers. Arguello had it on the test to become a Cubs Den Blogger. You have to know player's WHIP to an extra 1000th.

    Conviction. Yessir. Totally...

  • In reply to felzz:

    Our test is similar to the Wonderlic, except that there's a physical fitness portion at the end.

  • How many games will they lose next year with this prediction? 90? 100?

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    Nice article, Felzz.

    ---

    Happy New Year everyone!

    Stay safe.

  • Brett Jackson for D Brown? No. ;)

  • Great stuff Felzz.... Happy New Year to all...

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    I don't know about free rides home for party goers,but up here in the land of 10,000 lakes the Twin City cops painted a squad car where the front half was a yellow cab and the back half a police car. The slogan on the rocker panels was "choose your ride,lol a sobering thought.

    BTW Felzz , really loved the February rundown , now I have visions of Crane hobbling all over the place,too funny.

  • January: Cubs trade a prospect only Arguello has ever heard of for a CF prospect even Arguello has never heard of.

    February: Big Z gets arrested after shows up in Mesa demanding another chance and takes a bat to the windshield of two cars in the parking lot when when Theo says adios.

    March: Jackson hits 6 homers in first 6 spring training games. Cubs trade DeJesus for another prospect only Arguello has ever heard of.

    April -- September: Cubs are biggest, best and most surprising in baseball as they . . . !!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Happy New Year to Cubs fans!!!!

  • In reply to Nondorf:

    LOL! I'll fill all of you guys in on all prospects :)

  • Nice read Felzz! Glad to know the cheap shots will be coming in every wrap. If Kim leaves, I'm wearing all black. Not just the arm band.

    Happy New Years Everyone!

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    Quite frankly this was one of the most hilarious pieces of writing I've ever seen on the internet. I'm literally coughing lol

    especially the side story featuring John moving to Az to become the next keith Law only to come back because of how hot it is and not being scotch compatible

    Lmaoooooo pure genius. This made my day. Thank you felzz.

    P.S a toast is in order. A toast for felzz actually coming close to actually spelling Samardzija's name right lol Award for most improved goes to.....

  • In reply to Marcel Jenkins:

    Love AZ but if it's too hot for scotch, not sure I can deal with it.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    was a great night for scotch last night John, we were below freezing here!!!!! In the summer, not so good

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    In reply to Luigi Ziccarelli:

    Felzz, great article hillarious!!!!! Happy New Year guys!!!

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    John, that's what ice cubes are for. Haven't you ever had Scotch on the rocks?

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    I'm more of a Kentucky Burbon kind of guy myself,... Ice fixes some of that problem,... in some situations,... ice with some club soda is even better. Just don't do it with the high end hooch.

    But I was just about to point out that same fact Michael.

    :D

  • Ok, Ok, I have a defense, albeit a retarded one, for misspelling Samardzija's name. here's the thing.

    Usually I have the game thread up when I write so it's right there for me, but one of my first and favorite Shark headlines was "The Zija, The Jiza, the ghost face Bizzuh...." because anytime you have a chance to go Wu-tang, you gotta Wu-Up!!!!!! But it's given me a total dyslexic reaction to the back part of Shark's name. I honestly thought about splitting them and at least getting it right once....but I went Jiza instead of Zija. My bad. Will almost certainly happen again.

    Otherwise thanks for the comments. And Happy 2013.

  • Happy New Year!
    The Cubs will be seen in oh 13
    Let's draft 2

  • Felzz, you crack me up. Especially love the Sullivan comments.

    Happy New Year to you, John, Tom, and the rest of all the great Cubs fans on here. May 2013 bring some tangible Cubs excitement.

  • Very good summary of the new year, thanks for that, only left out the part about this going to be our year... for that 1 pick! Also it is never too hot for scotch, just need to go scotch on the rocks, the best summer cooler. Cheers and Happy new year!

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    That was hilarious. Thanks, Felzz! And happy new year, everyone!

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    On a serious note, I'm curious to know where every one thinks the Cubs are going in 2013. As for me, outside of the Reds, I could see the Cardinals, Brewers and Pirates all taking a step back in 2013, which might leave an ever so slight opening for the Cubs to not finish in last place.

    I think this Cubs team will have decent pitching overall, at least up to the trade deadline, and a good defense. I don't see them being a team that beats themselves. Offense is where this team is going to struggle, but even there, this team will probably draw a good number of walks, and they will be athletic enough to run the bases well. I see a lot of 1 and 2 run losses.

    I predict the 2013 Cubs will finish in 5th place with a record of 73-89, but because I think someone between them and the Reds will slip badly, I give them a slight chance to finish in 4th place with a record of 78-84.

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    In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    I see:

    1) Cardinals (I've learned to never bet against these guys)
    2) Reds
    3) Pirates
    4) Cubs (Right now, around 75-87, but they will drop if they're out of it and move everything not nailed down.)
    5) Brewers

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Cardinals are on a down year.......but still pretty damn good team....

    Reds will have major pitching arm problems.....Baker will not last the season......Votto is not the same when he return from the DL....

    Pirates Hurdle will be the first manager to be fired....front office will panic ........some really good players on this team, but no leadership.....

    Brewers will just SUCK this year.....no pitching at all......

    Using a certain math formula on the teams in the Central division dealing with players past stats, player loss & additions, the Cubs can win this division by three games over the Cardinals.......

    Theo might have planned a quick fix of going to the playoffs in 2013.

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    In reply to CubsTalk:

    This is pretty optimistic.

    The Cubs staff -- 1 to 11 -- is probably slightly better than the Cardinals right now. If Miller continues his performance from the second half of last year and they grab a Kyle Lohse bargain basement pitcher, that advantage goes completely away, and we're in fact behind.

    On offense, it isn't even close, the Cardinals are better than us. If Taveras explodes on the scene this year, the deficit becomes a chasm.

    It's going to take everything going perfectly for the Cubs plus a good amount going wrong for the Cardinals for us to top them.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    I could see the Cubs jumping the Pirates. The Pirates don't really have great pitching.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    Cubs will be at 73-89 with 2nd pick in draft again. Houston will lose 115 games in AL.

  • In reply to cbbiefun2014:

    Cubs should be better than astros, twins, marlins, and Rockies. They might also leap the Mets and Mariners. So there pick will be between 4 and 8.

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    Late to the party, but Happy New Year everyone.

  • Predictions for 2013 Cubs & MLB.....

    - The Cubs will have 86 -90 wins.....
    - Soriano, Stewart, Casrto, Rizzo, Jackson will all have 20+ HR's
    - Six Cubs pitchers will have 10+ wins
    - Cubs will announce their own Cubs Network
    - Soriano will NOT be traded
    - Barney will be replace at second by a Rookie
    - Garza will leave the Cubs as a F/A
    - Appel will be selected by the Cubs
    - Camp, Bowden, Barney, Marmol will be traded in July

    - Rays, Blue Jays, Tigers, Rangers, Angels in the AL playoffs
    - Nationals, Giants, Dodgers, Braves, Cubs in the N.L. playoffs

    - Managers fired this season....Manual, Baker, Hurdle, Gardenhire....

    - All Star Game Starting Pitchers.... Strasberg / Price

    - Major player traded at July deadline.....Morneau, C. Lee, Konerko

    - 2013 MVP's.........Soriano / Fielder

    - 2013 Cy Young.....Cain / Weaver

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    In reply to CubsTalk:

    86-90 wins won't make the playoffs unless that team wins their division.

  • In reply to Just Win:

    Cardinals won 88 games and got the 2nd wild card

  • The Cubs may surprise next year or lose more games than last year, and could still be moving in the right direction. The organization was a mess and needed to fixed from the bottom up.

  • as long as we're looking ahead, id like to look at possible garza deals. the rangers and blue jays have been discussed before, but i think the cubs should look outside of those organizations to possibly get a #1 type pitcher.

    the d'backs have both bradley and skaggs and im sure the cubs are interested in both. if they suffer an injury to their pitching staff they could trade one, plus another lower level prospect for garza and still have the other prospect in their system.

    the mariners are trying to move forward and have a bevy of pitching prospects in walker, paxton and hultzen. im sure they would part with one if they were trying to improve the rotation for this season (hopefully walker).

    and finally the pirates. they have both taillon and cole, and i think cole is the one who is widely thought of as the favorite in their organization. the pirates like the mariners are trying to take a step forward and have their first winning season in several years. trading for garza gives them a better chance at reaching their goal and they wouldnt be losing anything from the big league club.

    all 3 of these organizations have a lot of top end pitching prospects, so they will be able to handle the blow of losing one of them. i think id even be okay with doing a 1 for 1 trade or a 1 for 1 top pitching prospect and another guy in the 20-30 range in the other teams organization.

    im not proposing that we trade garza, but if we do id like it to be to one of these teams as i think they will give us the best return. also dont forget that if we trade him without and extension there is always a chance that we resign him next winter.

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    In reply to jshmoran:

    Given John's articles on the return (or lack thereof) from trading top pitchers, I'd say a 1 for 1 Garza for prospect trade would be a mistake. If that's the best we can get, we should just extend him. We need to get at least 3 good prospects, 1 of which is a potential top guy who's reasonably close to the majors. Garza probably doesn't get us that now, because of the injury, but I think that's a necessary return if we're going to get decent value on the trade.

  • In reply to Kevin Heckman:

    we wouldve gotten 3 good prospects for him if he was dealt before last years trade deadline, at this point we'll be lucky to get 2, especially if we trade him during the season and not before. what im suggesting is that we trade him for one ELITE pitching prospect and another decent prospect. like i said im not proposing that this is the way we go, because i think id be okay with an extension too, but if hes traded i want an elite arm back and at this point thats how i think the cubs get it.

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    In reply to Kevin Heckman:

    Takes two to Tango. Garza has very limited reasons to accept an extension right now if he knows he's healthy.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    $100 million contract is not out of the question after what was spent on Sanchez and others.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    I can see both sides of this issue, and I think something could be worked out that gives Garza security and the Cubs flexibility.

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    In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    I'm not sure Garza wants security, though. He saw the contract Greinke just got and he knows full well he's the best pitcher -- by a country mile -- on the FA market next winter. If he gets to that -- it's payday. As much as I'd like to blame him, I really can't.

    Perhaps I'm wrong, though, and more security is important to him. If that's the case, hopefully the extension is announced at the Cubs Convention.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    If things can't be worked out, then he has to be traded, or you make him the minimal qualifying offer to get the draft pick, if you can't get a deal you like.

    If Scott Boras were representing Garza, I'd say you were 100% correct. Also, a lot of this depends on how Garza is wired. There is a way to skin this cat if both sides wish to badly enough.

  • The sad truth is that the Cubs will not get the same return for Garza than we they gave up for him. For starters, he's a free agent after this upcoming season and unless he looking better than ever, the return for him will not be as much as many of us would like

  • In reply to Steve Flores:

    You are absolutely correct. The Cubs will get 1 "prospect" or 2, at the most for Garza.

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    In reply to Steve Flores:

    I think the Cubs' best bet is to extend Garza.

  • Long list of Cubs pitchers with win totals that will be at Wrigley for 2013...
    (*) call up
    (DL) starting the season on the DL

    (DL) Baker – 8
    Bowden – 2
    * Cabrera – 2
    Camp – 2
    * Castillo – 0
    * Coleman – 1
    * Dolis – 0
    Feldman – 5
    Fuijkawa – 2
    (DL) Garza – 12
    Jackson – 12
    Marmol – 4
    * McNutt -1
    * Parker – 1
    * Raley – 0
    Rondon – 3
    * Rusin – 1
    Russell – 4
    Samardzija – 10
    Takahashi – 2
    * Vizcaino – 2
    Villanueva – 10
    * Wade – 0
    Wood – 10

  • If the Cubs were going to trade Garza before last season's deadline, I don't see anything that has happened since that might have changed their minds. I see Garza being traded before this season's deadline, or made the qualifying offer after the season, not signing a contract extension.

  • Wow, remind me to invite CubsTalk to my bachelor party! The only thing that I was disagreeable with, not disagree with, was Kim DeJesus! That got me depressed. The season scenario I have decades of preparation for. http://www.chicagonow.com/cubs-den/2012/12/looking-ahead-way-ahead/#submit

    Be patient! Keep the course! In three years, after smart transactions, trades, and rebuilding the core, strike the colors and shoot at their mast! When their budgets are weighing them down in heavy seas, we will fly past them with a shot in their bows!

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