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Winter Rumors Thread Day 3: Ellsbury not a fit? Keppinger popular

Winter Rumors Thread Day 3: Ellsbury not a fit? Keppinger popular

Day 3 starts us off with the kind of mega deal you won't see from the Cubs this season.  The Dodgers and Rangers appear to be in a bidding war for Zach Greinke's services.  Kind of fun to watch a couple of heavyweights go toe to toe on the best FA.  Many believe the final amount will exceed CC Sabathia's $161M.

There is also talk of a big 3-5 team swap involving the Rays, Rangers, Indians, and Diamondbacks with players like Justin Upton, Trevor Bauer, James Shields, and Asdrubal Cabrera being in the mix. Meanwhile, on with Cubs-related stuff...

  • 8:23 PM: Carrie Muskat writes that the Cubs will continue to look for a 3B and will platoon if they have to.  Ian Stewart is still on their radar.  "We feel we have a good relationship with (Stewart),” Hoyer said. “He went through a tough time with his wrist. We have no issues with how he handled himself.”
  • 8:05 PM: Bruce Levine writes that the Cubs have talked with Ryan Dempster on the parameters of a deal should he want to come back and pitch in Chicago again.  Dempster has some offers out there but has been hesitant to sign any of them.  The Cubs have 5 starters right now but Dempster would add some stability and flexibility.  With Baker out for the first month or so and Garza still a question mark, the Cubs could use some depth.  I'm just surprised that it's Dempster who's name has come up again.  If he comes to Chicago on a deal that provides value and with the understanding that he could be traded (not that he can do anything about it now), I'm okay with it.
  • 7:17 PM: Bruce Levine tweets that the Cubs will emphasize pitching in the Rule 5 draft tomorrow.
  • 6:45 PM: We hinted at this yesterday but it appears that the Cubs are taking offers on trading their #2 pick in tomorrow's Rule 5 draft.  I like the idea.  There are some pretty good prospects but most aren't ready to make a significant contribution right away.  Perhaps the Cubs are better off saving the roster spot and getting a prospect instead.
  • 6:40 PM: Carrie Muskat tweets, "#Cubs did talk to free agents Keppinger, Chavez, who both signed today. Betancourt not in mix. No 3B yet. Hoyer says: "We'll keep looking"  I actually tweeted earlier wondering out loud if Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer were just messing us with the Betancourt rumor.  It just made no sense.  The rumor has debunked and I can't help wondering if those guys had a good laugh at our expense.
  • 3:11 PM: Hearing from a source that the Cubs have "genuine interest" in RP Jason Grilli.  This doesn't appear to be a situation where the Cubs are kicking the tires and looking to buy low.  The ball is in Grilli's court, if he wants to come to Chicago, the Cubs will bring him in.
  • 3:00 PM:  Slow news day so far.  An interesting nugget on some old news though.  Bowden (I'm presuming ESPN's Jim Bowden) said that RHP Dan Haren's hip is bone on bone, and that's ultimately why the Cubs turned it down.  Amazing that Haren can pitch effectively as he does with what must be an extremely painful condition.
  • 1:33 PM: While I never thought he was coming to the Cubs, I'm a bit surprised to see that the Yankees did not re-sign 3B Eric Chavez.  The Diamondbacks swooped in and stole him.  Yanks options dwindling.  Who'd have thought they'd be getting outspent and outmaneuvered?  Apparently the White Sox inquired on Chavez first but Chavez, who probably would have retired rather than take a situation he didn't want, wanted to be closer to home.  D'Backs may have been the only team that could have stolen him from the Yankees.
  • 1:10 PM:  It appears that Jason Bay is going to sign with the Seattle Mariners per Jon Morosi.  I don't think a whole lot of Cubs fans are going to grieve about this development.  It seems Bay was offered guaranteed money and possibly a roster spot.  I can't see Theo doing that on a pure flyer candidate.
  • 12:24 AM:  The White Sox have signed Jeff Keppinger to a 3 year deal per Jon Heyman.  There was a lot of competition for Keppinger so he went from bargain bin guy to someone looking at a multi-year contract in the 8 figure range.  Good signing by our cross-town rivals in that they badly need a 3B and Keppinger one of the better ones in a weak market.  He'll probably be their everyday guy and maybe that makes the contract worth it for them, but it's a lot for a guy who's been a  platoon/utility player throughout his career.  UPDATE: Deal for Keppinger is for $12M.  Overpay, but I guess Sox trying to win now and, for better or worse, he'll be a full-time starter.
  • 11:45 AM: Phil Rogers says his people tell him the Cubs are zeroing in on Stanford’s Mark Appel and Indiana State’s Sean Manaea with the second  overall pick in this June's draft.
  • 11:01 AM: Two players connected with the Cubs, RP Jason Grilli and OF Jason Bay, are reportedly close to making a decision.
  • 10:34 AM: Bruce Levine writes that the Cubs are pleased with the amount of interest they are getting in both Carlos Marmol and Alfonso Soriano.  He also says there is some optimism that the logjam will break before the meetings are over.  We'll see.  I hope he's right on this one. Other sources expressed pessimism that Soriano could be dealt but Levine believes there are AL teams with interest.  Marmol may be the easier to deal of the two.
  • 10:25 AM:  This may put the final nail in the coffin on any Jacoby Ellsbury to the Cubs speculation but Olney quotes a rival official that says the Red Sox aren't motivated to deal him and will only do so if a team overpays.  Now whether or not you think the Cubs should make a deal for Ellsbury to begin with is up for debate, but overpaying to acquire his services at this stage of the rebuild would be a bad idea.
  • 9:41 AM: Well, here's a first and it comes via Joel Sherman,  a guy we trust here.  The Indians are in the lead for Jason Bay with the Mariners 2nd, but the Cubs are "on the periphery" for his services.  Since the Cubs are not in the lead and seemingly laying in the weeds, I'm guessing that they're offering less than the other two teams, at least on a base deal.  Bay hit .165 with 8 HRS, but interestingly, Bill James projects him to hit ..247/.343/.417 with 17 HRs next season.  It also includes an above average wOBA of .332.  That OBP is solid and there's some power there as well.  Typical flyer type signing who may gain a lot of value as season wears on -- or be a complete dud.  But that's why they're flyers.
  • 9:15 AM: Per Ken Rosenthal via Twitter, the Padres will not extend Chase Headley at this time because he has all the leverage and the timing isn't right for them.  This almost certainly means they will hang on to Jed Gyorko as an insurance policy.  It was speculated here that Gyorko might make a nice fit for the Cubs if they could find a match with the Padres.
  • 9:00 AM: Buster Olney believes the Cubs are not a fit for Jacoby Ellsbury (insider only).  Rather he sees him going to win now teams in search of a leadoff hitter such as the Braves and Reds.  He speculates that the Red Sox would require young pitching in return.
  • 9:00 AM: Per Joel Sherman of the NY Post, as many as 6 teams are in on Jeff Keppinger, a utility infielder who was non-tendered last season.   The Yankees appear to be driving up the bidding and it's now said that Keppinger is seeking 3 years/$12M, though may settle for 2 years/$10M.  They are looking to platoon Eric Chavez and Keppinger at 3B in the wake of Alex Rodriguez's latest injury.  According to Ken Rosenthal, the White Sox are one of the 6 teams involved.

Filed under: Rumors/Speculation

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  • fb_avatar

    I would agree that Ellsbury isn't a fit right now. In spite of a down year, Boston would still want a significant return for him. Why pay it when you can sign him as a free agent next winter? Next winter, the Cubs will hopefully be ready to take "The Great Leap Forward" (all puns intended), and a signing like Ellsbury might make more sense to the Cubs.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    Makes sense. If you want him to be your vet, why not wait one more year and get him for $$, which they will have plenty of. Not sure it's worth giving up SP, which is what Boston reportedly wants.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    To say nothing of the fact that by then we'll have a better sense of what BJax might be, so we'll know what kind of outfield help we're looking for.

  • In reply to Kevin Heckman:

    Not only BJax, but also Almora. There is some good CF depth in this organization.

  • The Cubs may have to go with the 'in house' options at 3b.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Indeed. That could mean a Luis Valbuena and Edwin Maysonnet or Greg Rohan or Alberto Gonzalez platoon until (and if) Vitters or Lake ready to take over.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    It would be interesting to see how Rohan would do.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to John Arguello:

    Edwin Maysonnet. He played with the Sounds most of last year. If its him, you'll look back fondly on the prodigious offensive contribution of "Babe" Valbuena.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    I know. Slim pickins right now for a RH complement to Valbuena. I was thinking more that it would make you pine for the days of Jeff Baker.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    I like the Lake idea above, though. I know this is crazy, but I just have a feeling this is his year. If he lights it up for Iowa, I could see him getting the Rizzo trip in June.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    The thing about toolsy players is if it does click for them from the neck up, they can move quickly. For Lake he's shown signs that maybe things are starting to click for him a bit. Still a ways to go, but like I said, the more physically gifted guys tend to make big leaps if they figure out an approach that works for them.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Hasn't Lake been playing OF in Winter Ball? If so, this may be a sign of where the Cubs see him as a best fit.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Lake's problem is throwing the baseball. Not sure that he is going to be able to correct that in a few months at Iowa...

  • In reply to IrwinFletcher:

    Like he throws it too hard? That dude has a cannon, which is why many scouts have felt he'd play best at 3rd (if his bat developed more power) or OF.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    It appears that Keppinger and Chavez are another pair of 3B 'off the table'. And now with Chavez gone - who is going to man 3B for the Yanks?

    Wonder if they would be interested in trading for 'Vitters'?

    Nahh,...

  • In reply to drkazmd65:

    Kevin Youkilis is still out there. So is Mark Reynolds.

  • fb_avatar

    Ellsbury is a guy I would not only trade prospects for, I wouldn't even sign him long term next year. The guy has never been able to stay on the field and only showed premium power 1 year. He would present one of the biggest risks in baseball and that's not one I'd be willing to take. I think his big year was a one time wonder and not the real Ellsbury.

  • In reply to Marcel Jenkins:

    Huge concern with Ellsbury's ability to stay healthy. Big risk and you may be right there. Not the guy to take a chance on at this stage.

  • fb_avatar

    Even though the pads won't sign Headley they still aren't trading Gyoko until Headley signs and who knows when that could be. He still has what 2-3 years of cost control left? By then Headley won't be as attractive and we should have Baez or Villanueva knocking on the door. They are also talking of moving headley or gyorko to the outfield, you can tell they will try keep both for as long as possible.

  • In reply to Marcel Jenkins:

    Agreed. It may all end up being a moot point. At the very least, the Cubs should know how strong their need is for a 3B after this season. Villanueva and Baez about to move up and we'll see how they do against tougher competition.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Marcel Jenkins:

    I'm with you. We were (or at least I was) probably spoiled with the deal for a core piece less than six months after Theo took office. I was hoping we'd get another one this off-season, but the team is in a very different place. The obvious young pieces with some value (Cashner, Colvin) are gone, and Marmol, Soriano, and Garza all have issues being moved for a fair return. So, just riding out the plan makes more sense than doing something just to do something.

    Still -- Mike Moustakas and Cody Buckel would be nice. :D

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    It seems the FO is looking at core pitchers moreso than core positional guys. There is quite a bit of young talent to be added to Rizzo and Castro. What is lacking right now is quality pitching and that is, and should be, the focus right now...

  • In reply to IrwinFletcher:

    He's moved around. I've always seen him as a supersub type and I believe the Cubs are beginning to say the same thing. Hoyer mentioned him as a guy who could help at 3B, SS, and OF down the road.

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    In reply to IrwinFletcher:

    Partly disagree here. Right now, we have 3 parts of the core at the big league level -- Rizzo, Castro, and Samardzija. We really can't be too picky. If there's a core piece out there that makes sense, the Cubs have to add it.

  • Thanks for the updates and analysis, John. Cubs Den is a must-follow throughout the day and evening, especially these days.
    I was amused to see the following on MLBTR. I'm glad we passed on Escobar for many reasons:

    12:24am The Marlins' trade of Yunel Escobar to the Rays earlier tonight was prompted by the fact that Escobar approached the club saying he was not comfortable at third base just days after telling them otherwise, writes Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post.
    Read more at http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/#mKq0A1pfmsVtgKmq.99

  • In reply to StillMissKennyHubbs:

    Thanks Hubbs. Nice nugget on Escobar -- it goes back to what people fear about him. He's a me-first guy and perhaps the Cubs are better off not having him. Marlins did well to get a nice infield prospect in return.

  • fb_avatar

    The proposed mega trade has a tangential impact on the Cubs. Remember the story that the Royals wanted to trade Wil Myers for pitching help? James Shields was a biggie mentioned in a proposed deal. If he's off the market, it makes Garza look like a better fit.

    Personally, I'd rather trade Garza for good young pitching, but if they aren't going to extend him, getting something is better than getting nothing, and Myers could always be flipped for young pitching.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Mike Moody:

    I agree. Much rather get pitching in return for Garza but if you can get 1 premium CF prospect then why not? You can always flip Myers Rizzo-style for pitching.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    It may come down to that. I agree that you have to get value, even if it isn't at your biggest need. The Cubs aren't far along enough where they can be choosy about specific needs right now. They need to get impact talent.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    John, do you have any idea whether the Cubs are more likely to trade Garza in the spring versus late in the season at the trade deadline? Does Garza have to prove himself all over again over most of the season in order to bait the hook for the contenders to bite?

  • In reply to baseballet:

    It comes down to value. Garza's value right now is down because nobody knows for sure if he is healthy. Not "note from the Doctor" healthy, but go out and pitch 7 innings and come back 5 days later and do it again healthy. We won't see that until the season starts. That will only increase his value and increase the return we get...

  • In reply to IrwinFletcher:

    I wouldn't say you have to necessarily wait until mid-season. Teams may feel more confident by the end of the spring. They'll also have a better idea what their needs are going into the season. Not to mention it would give them the option of picking up a draft pick if they trade for him before the season starts.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to IrwinFletcher:

    The risk is higher with Garza right now, but in one respect he has more value. Because if he is tendered a qualifying offer at the end of next season, and signs elsewhere, his team gets another 1st rnd draft pick. That only applies, though, if he is on the roster the entire year.

    So, whatever team has Garza will be able to get a draft pick at the end of the year, if he pitches well, which increases his value.

    If the Cubs move him at the deadline next year, that draft pick will go to nobody, thereby decreasing his trade value

    But there are health doubts as you point out. Maybe the Cubs take him to ST, he proves health, and trade right before opening day

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Sorry for the Freshman question but is the pick the "Losing" Team receives, the pick of the "Signing" Team or are they supplemental (incremental ) picks added to the round?

  • In reply to Good Captain:

    Supp

  • With the long term signing of David Wright, what are the Met's plans with Wilmer Flores? I know they are in need of a corner outfielder, and tend to like aging guys with bad legs. Any chance of Soriano and a few others for Flores?

  • In reply to Break The Curse:

    Ha! That was the pre-Alderson Mets. This new FO much more difficult to deal with than the Omar Minaya days. I don't think so on Soriano to NY.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Agreed! What do you know about Flores? I know he's a converted shortstop and hasn't shown much power but the potential is there. I think there is much upside and Wright seems to be blocking him unless they plan on a position change.

  • In reply to Break The Curse:

    Some talent, hasn't really lived up to it yet. Maybe a 20 HR guy. Definitely not a SS but could stick at 3B. Worth looking into at right price but not sure he's as good as Villanueva. Was more highly thought of when scouts thought he had a chance to stick at SS.

  • It does appear the Cubs will be going in-house for a 3rd baseman for now . I still think that if the Cubs don't come away with a 3rd baseman right now , they will look again in spring training

  • Reading the comments about garza, I think the cubs would be wise to hang on to garza because I think the return would not be worth trading him. Teams need more than a few spring training games to give up top prospects. I think the cubs will see were they are during the season then worry about trading him.

  • In reply to seankl:

    Good point.

  • Reports out of South Florida is that the Marlins have eyes on Ian Stewart.

  • Yunel Escobar went to the Rays late last night for a prospect.

  • fb_avatar

    If the Cubs and the Padres were to swing a deal, I'm sure James Darnell would be available and pretty cheaply. I don't know his defensive skill set, but he has hit at all minor league levels and Bil James says once you possess a tool, you always have it. He's still only 25. At the very least he has to be a better option than paying the going rate for Hanahan or Keppinger and he probably couldn't do any worse than Ian Stewart. Thoughts?

  • In reply to Jive Wired:

    Well below average fielder with a decent hit tool. Good patience. Not sure he can stick at 3B. May not be as good a prospect as Vitters.

  • John,

    Any whispers on who is in on Soriano? What's being offered in return? He definitely shouldn't be a giveaway at this point; the money doesn't hurt that much with the current state of the club, and he's one of the team's best hitters.

  • In reply to Eddie:

    My guess would be the Orioles, Mariners, A's, possibly the Rays. Cubs would have to pay a chunk of his salary, of course.

    I think they can't give him away. They need someone with some MLB ready talent. I think Brian Matusz might be a good fit from the Orioles. Cubs could give him a shot at their rotation.

  • In reply to Eddie:

    Texted one of Soris peeps and no news yet on them being approached.

  • I have to agree on Ellsburry now, if BOS wants that much forget it. However I still like him injuries and all.

  • In reply to Tom Loxas:

    Agreed I like Ellsbury, but it seems that trading for him now means surplus value going to Red Sox. Cubs not in position to do that yet.

  • Trade Rizzo next season, after a big 2013 campaign, for King Feliz. Bring up Babe Volgelboch and with Vitters at third we win. Cubs win. Oh, Castro is gonna be an extraordinary player at this time.

  • In reply to Wadester:

    Sorry but I think Rizzo is a fixture and Im not big on Vitters though Id like him to change my mind very much.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Tom Loxas:

    Trade Vitters for a nice MLT sandwich - Mutton, Lettuce, and Tomato.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Just Win:

    I love those, when the mutton is nice and lean and the tomatoes are fresh. They're so perky. I love that.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Kevin Heckman:

    I once worked on this God-awful show about a bunch of knights trapped in the middle east during the crusades that would have been helped immensely by that line. Can't remember who directed that. Some hack.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Mike Moody:

    Please excuse me everyone while I beat Mike senseless.

  • In reply to Kevin Heckman:

    To blave

  • In reply to Tom Loxas:

    Not that Seattle would ever make this ridiculous trade, but you would not trade Rizzo for King Felix !!! Really ???

    Congrats...you just won the award for "The stupidest baseball comment of 2012".

    And if you think I'm wrong, try posting this ridiculous comment elsewhere and just wait for the laughter.

  • You know, Edwin Jackson is still out there..... He's perennially undervalued.

  • In reply to Eddie:

    I wouldn't do more than 3 years though.

  • In reply to Tom Loxas:

    Seems like a good rule of thumb for all pitchers IMO.

  • In reply to Eddie:

    Yeah I would do more locking up a young durable guy of our own or a stud like Sabathia.

  • In reply to Eddie:

    Jackson's also been with 6 different teams in the last 5 seasons. There must be a reason for that. He shouldn't get more than a 1 year deal.

  • If the money was right I wouldn't mind going 3, he could be flipped or possibly a fit down the line. However Id much rather go after McCarthy.

  • In reply to Tom Loxas:

    McCarthy doesn't have the history of durability that Jackson has.

  • In reply to Eddie:

    True but he would come cheaper and have more upside reward.

  • I chalk that up to Javier Vazquez syndrome. Jackson isn't nearly as good as everyone expects him to be based on his physical gifts, so they keep giving up on a useful player. Keep your expectations reasonable and he'll give you 200 innings with a sub - 4.00 FIP.

  • In reply to Eddie:

    He'd really like a mult-year deal. Wonder if you can get a bargain on that since I'm sure he's tired of going from team to team. May take less for some stability as far as contract.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I'm with you, John. Wanted him for a long time and I think he can provide better production than some of the brand name SP for less money.

  • If it was a 3 year deal with the 2nd and 3rd years at the Cubs' option, and without a no-trade clause, I could live with that.

  • fb_avatar

    Edwin Jackson is the most underrated pitcher in baseball every year. If the Cubs can get him at three years I'd do it at the right money. But, he has shown an incredible willingness to do one-year deals. In any scenario, if the money is right, he is certainly someone who could garner long term assets in a mid-season trade.

  • fb_avatar

    Not a fan of MLBTR but here is what they say about Jackson, and they have him ranked #7 of their Top 50 FA.

    Perhaps under the advice of former agent Scott Boras, Jackson turned down at least one three-year offer last offseason in favor of a one-year deal with the Nationals. He's since joined Legacy Sports Group and figures to snag the first multiyear deal of his career. The 29-year-old throws hard, misses bats, and takes the ball every fifth day.

  • fb_avatar

    Very encouraging news regarding BJax yesterday. I think that is one of the most impressive parts of the new regime-they're more apt to fix a player before giving up on them. There appears to be a solid development plan for all the prospects. It will be interesting to see if the off season plans for Dollis, Campana, Cabrera, etc...make a noticeable difference...Regardless, this is refreshing change from years' past.

    As for Garza, if they hold out until spring training and show he's healthy, his value should sky rocket. When Haren gets 13m for one year, Garza will be a bargain and should net a good return, albeit not as much as they gave up for him.

    As for Marmol, these big relief pitcher contracts should make his contract comparable to a set-up guy. I would think that would really increase his value.

    As much as I'd like to see some activity, I'm thinking the FO is laying in the weeds...

  • In reply to Dale Miller:

    Looking forward to seeing how that new swing translates this spring.

    I agree that Cubs FO lying in the weeds, looking to pounce on a good bargain or value while teams like the Red Sox overpay for decent part-time players.

  • In reply to Dale Miller:

    Garza couldn't get anybody out in ST last year. I can't see a desparate organization taking that gamble.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Scouts will be more concerned with velo and command than results, though they often go hand in hand.

  • In reply to Dale Miller:

    Did any of those prospects pan out for Tampa?

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to irish0625:

    Chris Archer could start this year in the majors; he has missed bats at AAA, but had some control issues. He had a handful of starts at ML level, and did pretty well last year. He'll get a shot and we'll see; he looks like #3-4 starter material, unless his control dramatically improves. He has great stuff, just middling control

    Hak Ju Lee had a good year last year at AA; started slow, but finished strong, and figures to start at AAA this year. He is still a BA top-100 in all likelihood, and Rays see him as SS of future

    The other guys, Guyer and Chirinios, are still around, but felled by injuries, and don't look to make an impact. They also got Sam Fuld, but I don't think we miss him.

  • Jackson has been similar to Kyle Lohse for the last several seasons, but Lohse is talking about getting a huge money contract. This seems like a no brainer to me.

    http://www.fangraphs.com/comparison.aspx?playerid=1841&position=P&page=9&players=739

  • fb_avatar

    To Phil Rogers: About the Cubs zeroing in on Appel and Manaea, WELL DUH!!!

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    Old news for us here :) Interesting that both Appel and Manaea represented by Boras.

  • Well Keppinger just signed with the White Sox :-(

  • In reply to irish0625:

    McLouth back to the Os.

  • fb_avatar

    This may have been reported earlier in the thread, and if it has been, my apologies, but I didn't see it when skimming through. Rumor seems to have it that Shane Victorino's next closest offer was from Cleveland for around half of what he is going to get from Boston over the same amount of time. If that's true, I can't say I really blame Victorino, but I have to wonder what Boston was thinking.

    Luigi and I were chatting last night on Facebook, and I'm more convinced than ever that Theo's hands are mostly clean in regards to the mess that is the Red Sox, and if the moves made since the end of the season are any indication, either Cherrington is really overrated, or more likely, he isn't calling the shots anymore than Theo was the last couple of years. In which case, he is being set up to fail by Lucchino and Henry.

    It's pretty obvious to anyone but maybe the Red Sox themselves that they're not looking competitive in that division. I even got the sense, after the big salary dump in July, that they might be inclined to mostly tear things down and start over, but I don't get that sense now, and I really have to wonder what they see that no one else does.

    I love what the Cubs' FO is doing. It was long overdue, and I can't help but think that soon Red Sox fans are going to look at Cubs' fans with envy.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    I'm truly stunned by what Boston has done. I'd much rather have Adrian Gonzalez than all of the guys they've picked up.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Couldn't agree more here.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to John Arguello:

    Gotta say, as a Red Sox fan, this has been painful to watch. It made me start thinking about who was going to come after Theo when he's ready to hang it up in Chicago. But I banished such thoughts until after he's brought in three consecutive World Series wins :)

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    Ken Rosenthal said the Indians offered 4 years, 44 mil. to Victorino.

    https://twitter.com/Ken_Rosenthal/status/276112170830422016

    He took the shorter deal that had a $2 mil per year higher salary.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Just Win:

    What I read came from SB Nation. So there seems to be some difference of opinion. I tend to doubt the Rosenthal report for one reason. I don't see the Indians making that sort of offer. It's not how they've rolled in the past.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    Have to believe Lucchino is, and has been, the de facto GM.

  • fb_avatar

    I don't really understand what a few teams are doing:

    Boston: traded AGon and other large contracts only to replace them with bad contracts on even older players showing huge warning signs of decline.

    Indians: I agree with Michael Caldwell, the Tribe are better off starting a rebuild and trading away assets than signing old players to bad contracts. And the Tigers look like they will dominate that division the next 2 years, other than a complete lack of a closer at this point.

    Astros: Luhnow's plan appears to be "let's absolutely stink for 10 years and then start to get better." He's traded everything that wasn't tied down but received little back in return. Trading the good RP the other day for a mediocre SP prospect didn't make a lot of sense. The RP wasn't making much money and was under team control for 3 years. They probably were better off moving him into the closer role and trying to build his value and then trade him at the deadline or next offseason. Right now it looks like they might lose 110 games (or more?!!) and have a team payroll of $20 million. They make the Marlins look like a dominant, well run organization.

  • In reply to Just Win:

    The Indians are trying to rebuild exactly the way some think the Cubs should, by attempting to overpay FAs and entice them to choose them over better teams.

    Thoughts so far
    1) It isn't working, players choosing to go elsewhere anyway
    2) How good would these acquisitions have made them anyway?

    As for Houston, they are taking a long, long road. Trading decent RPs but getting marginal SPs in return. I guess they don't need a bullpen if they're going to be bad anyway, but hard to get impact prospects by trading middle relievers, even if they are solid guys. Still that seemed to be their strength. They could be historically bad next year -- and bad for a few years to come.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    The Astros should move to Cleveland because they're looking like the Cleveland Spiders. :)

  • In reply to Just Win:

    Ha! How the heck do you build a team that goes 11-101 on the road?? (Lots of road games back then, I guess). Worst team in modern era is 62 Mets (40-120). Houston may approach that if they don't add legit MLB talent soon.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    This is a good read about the 1899 Cleveland Spiders, who lost 134 games...

    http://www.helium.com/items/502188-the-worst-baseball-team-in-history

  • In reply to Just Win:

    Thanks!

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    Something I've been thinking about with the Astros. In 2014, assuming things stay the same (snicker, snicker), Rodon will be the best pitcher available since Strasburg. If you're the Astros, do you take him and flip him a year later since he figures to be major league ready long before your other prospects?

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    That wouldn't surprise me with the Astros. I don't know if he's Strasburg quality, tough. At least not ready to say that until we see how he performs this year. No doubt he's a potential beast.

    Looks like Houston has that #1 pick sewn up already. Can't see the Cubs being bad enough to be anything worse than the 3rd worst team in baseball right now -- and I think even that won't happen.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    I agree on Rodon's talent. I don't think he Strasburg either, but I don't think there's been anyone better in the draft since Strasburg was picked. (And after saying that Rodon will be glorified batting practice next year.)

    And, yes, the Astros are going to struggle to win 40 games this year. That might be the worst MLB team I've ever seen.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    I guess Bundy may prove to be the best pitcher of the lot, but that was a best case scenario in his development after being drafted. Actually a good point to you on draft order not necessarily being king.

    (Aside: how much must it suck to be Robert Bundy right now?)

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    Apparently Keppinger got 3 years with the White Sox. I'm just in awe of the contracts being handed out.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    3 years, 12 mil. Not terrible, but still a lot. I can see why Theo didn't feel comfortable going that high.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    Keppinger will be ages 33-34-35 on that deal. A bit of a risk, but it's kind of not such a huge deal in that it's just over $4 mil on average and with the gigantic bump in team income from the new national TV deals starting in 2014, I think we'll see $4 mil for a starting or borderline starting player/everyday supersub being a huge value.

    Just look at Boston's ridiculous deal for Gomes. He has proven he can't hit RHP and they gave him $5 mil per year. Those kind of deals lead to other crazy contracts, or at least appear to. If so-and-so, a platoon player, is getting $5 mil, a starting player is worth what, $10 mil? And we see that's where Pagan signed. And it makes the contract Michael Bourn is asking for seem more reasonable in that light. It's ridiculous, but using the "new MLB math" it makes some kind of crazy sense.

  • In reply to Just Win:

    You also have to consider that the new CBA has something to do with the higher spend here as well. Teams are not able to overpay in the draft like year's past without huge penalties so FA has become a more fruitful market.

  • Keppinger may have been a platoon/utility player, but he is tough out. May be a DeRosa type and wish the Cubs could have gotten him. Sox may have overpaid. Free agents getting good money this year.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    They really are. It's a mediocre FA class at best but they're certainly not getting paid for it.

    Don't like the deal but for the Sox it makes more sense to pay that than the Cubs. It's really they're biggest hole and they were close to the playoffs last year. Understand why they'll overpay for another shot. For the Cubs it may have meant an extra victory or two. For the Sox that would have been crucial last year.

  • With all of the seemingly ridiculous contracts being given out, at what point do we just sit here and say "OK, with the new revenues coming in, this is the new norm. It's not a one-time inflation and it's not all of these GMs being crazy -- it's just that's what players cost now."

    I like the value contracts that the Cubs have given out so far (Maholm, Baker, Feldman, DeJesus), and at this point I still don't want the Cubs giving out big contracts to anyone. But at this rate, I'm not sure I would be surprised if the Cubs can't land anyone else without "overpaying" them. I'd like to think it's not true, but with these revenues not going anywhere, the market prices we're seeing could be the new going price.

    The silver lining here is that I've got to imagine the appeal level for Soriano and Marmol just went up. A $5-10 million a year Soriano, even though he's old, looks pretty good to me right now.

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    In reply to mosconml:

    For serious. Baker and Feldman have to be looking for new agents right about now.

  • In reply to mosconml:

    Keeping them looks better ss well.

  • In reply to mosconml:

    Eventually they'll have to overpay when they're in a position where the opportunity to win now exceeds the loss of overall value. Don't think they're there yet.

    Nice point on the last paragraph. Soriano, Marmol contracts don't look nearly so bad right now.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    I just hope when we overpay its because we're in on Zach Greinke and not paying a utility guy $12 million for 3 years.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Agreed.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    You'd rather gamble and make a $161 million mistake than a $12 million mistake? That's crazy.

    BTW, five years ago, in 2007, a utility player named Mark DeRosa got a 3 year, $13 mil contract from the Cubs for his ages 32, 33, and 34 seasons.

    I don't see how giving out the same amount of money for a similar player five years later is overpaying.

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    In reply to Just Win:

    Yes. Because Jeff Keppinger and Zach Greinke are not even close to the same player. Zach Greinke is one of the very few (10-14) true aces in baseball today with 5 major league quality pitches and plus control. That makes his production close to irreplaceable by anyone not named Zach Greinke. If the Cubs are making a push for the World Series and can't replace Keppinger's numbers internally, something is very wrong.

    You mention DeRosa: the mere fact that he played well doesn't mean that Hendry didn't overpay. Most of the time Hendry did that (think Aaron Miles) it failed miserably.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    I disagree with your concept, not the players specifically.

    I don't think it's smart baseball to sign anyone to a $100+ contract, period. I don't care if they are named Zack Greinke, Albert Pujols, Fred Flinstone, etc.

    A $4 mil a year contract for someone who in this situation will play everyday for the White Sox is not much of a risk. Nor is it an overpayment when part time players like Eric Chavez get $3 million (and haven't started 80 or more games since 2007) and Jonny Gomes, who is a platoon player, gets $5 mil per year. Reynolds is asking for $7.5 mil. per year. He may not get that but he will almost surely get more than $4 mil per year.

    Keppinger, BTW, is a good player. A career slash line of .288/.337/.396. Not exactly the power you want from a third baseman but far better than many of the choices out there. This is a good, safe move for the White Sox. And even if the Cubs had offered him the same deal (which we don't know that they didn't), he would likely have picked a team with a better shot at the playoffs.

    The price of starting MLB players has skyrocketed, whether we like it or not.

  • Don't forget guys. Starting in 2014 every team will be getting at least 25 million more in national tv money. They are starting to spend it. For a team like Cleveland, that is a 38% increase in money available for payroll. Seattle similar.

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    There is a tsunami of money coming to baseball, in the form of national TV and MLB.com deals ($78 mil to every team starting next year before season even starts), local TV money (Dodgers take from Fox: $250 mil to $280 PER YEAR), and that's before a single ticket is sold. It's nuts; every team will be able to afford a $100mil payroll before selling a single ticket before long.

    Get used to the $$$$

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    You ultimately play for who wants you the most, but Seattle didn't see like a good fit for Bay. It's definitely not a hitters paradise.

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    In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    I'm not sure Minute Maid with the fences moved in would cure Bay.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    I agree, Bay has looked awful for a few years now. I don't know what kind of money they gave him but they can't be counting on him to play everyday.

  • Who's going to play 3B for the Yankees? Keppinger to the Sox, Chavez to the D-backs.

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    Youkilis is still out there.

    That would make Red Sox fans happy.

  • A very good question Raymond.

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    Some under the radar and dirt cheap signing or trade like Wilson Betemit probably. He's under contract to the O's for $1.75 mil in 2013 plus an option for 2014. If the O's can fill 3B with someone else they might deal him. Not that he's much of anything, very streaky, mostly unproductive, etc. But I would think that's more like the kind of move the Yankees make. (and in some ways, maybe the Cubs make)

    Jack Hannahan also could be someone that gets signed for $2 mil or less. Good glove, not much offense.

  • Third basement are going to be coming out of retirement.

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    John or Tom, any new thoughts you care to share on tomorrow's Rule V Draft?

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    Written on it a lot already. Expect them to take bullpen arm, maybe Fields or an upside guy like Braulio Lara. I like a guy like Hazelbaker, but questionable as to how much he can contribute off the bat.

    On other side, I think there's a 50/50 chance they lose Struck.

    May have one last preview up tomorrow.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I just read that the Astros are going to take two players in the Rule 5 draft tomorrow.
    Just think: they'll have Rule 5 first pick and the #1 draft choice next year too....by 2016 they might be a .400 ball club.

  • In reply to StillMissKennyHubbs:

    Normally, I'd say 2 Rule 5 guys tough to carry, but I it's the Astros roster, so no problem there. In fact, I think they may have done it last year.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    John,

    You think they'll opt for more MLB ready arms, or "High Upside" arms? Ben @ Baseball America has been touting the LAD prospect Jose Domingez for the rule 5. Supposedly has a high 90's FB and hard breaking "power curve" that is plus rated. Never been higher than AA though. I think he's staring at a 25 game suspension for PEDs too. Thoughts?

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Lot of upside with Dominguez but control a huge problem. Great stuff, poor command and won't be anything but a reliever -- but he's a longshot to make it at all. If they want to gamble, he's one guy.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    So are you thinking they'll opt for more MLB ready arms, or take flyer on "High Upside" arms?

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    I'd like to see them trade the pick and get a prospect they can keep in the minors.

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    Reading about the contracts that are being handed out - yes they are ridiculous. Even more so, I heard that Pittsburgh recently asked for Taijuan Walker in a trade for Garrett Jones, and then I just saw this on Twitter from Adam Rubin: One Mets official said that teams are asking for Zack Wheeler in virtually every trade proposal, even for platoon-type catchers.

    So I have to ask: What would the market be for Starlin Castro? And if we knew the health of Matt Garza, what would he get the Cubs in return?

  • In reply to Jive Wired:

    Wow...some crazy asking prices out there. Would be nice to have Garza healthy right now.

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    Aren't we due for this year's " Holy $#!+ -- No one saw that coming moment" like last year when Prince Fielder signed with Detroit? Would they do it again with Greinke? Then we could trade them Marmol for Porcello or Castellanos.

  • Seems like a good spot to suggest a ridiculous trade.

    Josh Vitters for Gordon Beckham.

    We might have to throw in another player but if any team likes reclamating former 1st round picks, It's the White Sox. Brent Morel sure as heck isn't going anywhere. And since Keppinger is there, they can develop him at Charlotte ( or wherever the hell there AAA is) And when Vitters is ready, slide Keppinger over to 2nd. ( Hell Short and move Ramirez to 2B.)

    Meanwhile the Cubs can put Beckham at 3B where he had his best season and while he may or may not turn into what everyone thought he'd be he'd be more than the Valbuena level it's at now, and defensively the they'd be quite good....

    It's better than Youk right..... I like Beckham more than any other option right now.

    So McClouth signed, Chavez signed and Bauer supposedly is in this super package. In other words: EVERY ONE OF MY PREDICTIONS IS VANISHING LIKE A FART IN THE WIND......

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    In reply to felzz:

    I thought the White Sox weren't interested in players younger than 30?

    They do have a talent for picking out older players who actually manage to hold value.

  • In reply to felzz:

    Shawshank Redemption.

  • In reply to felzz:

    I suggested a trade for Bechham several months ago.....put him at third. Many here shot it down. Becjham could be a Sandberg type player at Wrigley. The guy hits well when he is there in the Crosstown Series.

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    He who smealt it dealt it. I'd take Beckham. I'd take Morel for that matter. I'd think the WSOX would want a pitcher though.

  • Anyone see this?

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/gameon/2012/12/04/chicago-cubs-manager-dale-sveum-shot-in-ear-by-robin-yount/1747337/

    Svuem says he is fine so I feel totally fine starting the jokes:

    Svuem probably didn't shave for a couple days and Yount thought he was a grizzly bear or a werewolf.

  • This has always been the part of the business that I detest. It ruined my love of collecting baseball cards, and evey year, it makes me feel less connected to the game and the palyers on the field.

    I do not begrudge players for parlaying their very specific talents into a financial windfall. At the end of the day, it is us, the fans, that are freely paying the ridiculous prices that continue to fuel these outrageous salaries.

    to me, it is just another sign of the decline of western civilization

  • I saw on MLB Rumors, reported by CBS Danny Knobler that the Braves move Juan Francsco if the could find a LF to put Prado at 3B. How`about sending Soriano to them for Francisco & a pitching prospect. Then they could look for a LF. Thoughts?

  • What do you guys think of Betancourt?

    http://espn.go.com/blog/chicago/cubs/post/_/id/14283/source-cubs-have-some-interest-in-betancourt

  • Bentancourt doesn't fit emphasis on defense or is he a patient hitter, but he has some power and a cheap warm body until Lake or Vitters is ready mid season.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Gordon Wittenmyer ‏@GDubCub
    Don't believe everything you read about Cubs' interest in Y. Betancourt. it doesn't exist. #badrumor

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Did you see the posts from yesterday about Yuni? NO WAY !
    Besides, the rumor was unfounded, thank goodness....even as a prank it would be frightening.

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    It's being reported on MLBNR that rumors are going around Nashville that Scott Boras put in a request with the Red Sox on behalf of Jacoby Ellsbury that Boston try to trade him.

  • This could be interesting....

    @CarrieMuskat
    Teams have approached #Cubs about acquiring their No. 2 pick in Rule 5 Draft tomorrow. Hoyer says they'll study options tonight

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    @CarrieMuskat
    #Cubs did talk to free agents Keppinger, Chavez, who both signed today. Betancourt not in mix. No 3B yet. Hoyer says: "We'll keep looking"

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    That is interesting.
    I wonder what type of prospect that would net? (top 20? top 30? top 50?)

  • In reply to Cub Fan Dan:

    I don't think it's about Top 20 or Top 30. I think it's about Theo finding 'that guy' his scouts think they can do something with. Possibly in a position of need.

    C Prospects come in all shapes and sizes. If Theo can save the 25 man spot (at least initially), it will make Roster Roulette easier. That said, if someone tries to sneak a Rule 5 guy through waivers in late March through May, Theo might play later on, with a prospect in pocket anyway.

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    Hey John, do you think everyone waiting for the Zach Greinke shoe to drop has contributed to the slow meetings?

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    In some cases, but not sure why the RPs or role players wouldn't sign right now. Maybe they're seeing everyone else get overpaid and they want that kind of money too.

  • No sense wasting an Opening Day roster spot on someone who's not ready for the bigs. The Cubs have an asset that other teams are interested in. Convert it.

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    Cashner out 3 months after hunting accident.

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/cubs/chi-andrew-cashner-hunting-accident-20121205,0,1548559.story

    A friend stabbed him in the thumb on his pitching hand, requiring surgery.

  • In reply to Just Win:

    Hunting is taking its toll on MLB...first Sveum, now Cashner. If this keeps up, Dick Cheney is going to be the next commish......
    If they can hire limo drivers, can't they hire someone to hunt animals for them?

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    John, like everybody else, I've grown impatient with the lack of activity, but hopefully that'll change. Have you heard anything about the Cubs and Rangers talking? Someone brought up David Murphy's name yesterday, and I'd love to have him in a Cubs uniform.

  • In reply to Mike Ogulnick:

    Cubs have plenty of offers out, but they are not going to overpay for mediocrity as we've seen other teams have. It makes no sense when they can get similar talent for a lot less if they wait.

  • Really, Dempster Rumors.

  • Dempster supposedly turned down an offer from the Royals and is looking for something close to home, but wants 3yrs... Thoughts?

    http://espn.go.com/chicago/mlb/story/_/id/8718447/ryan-dempster-agent-chicago-cubs-talk-deal-source?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

  • After reading that Dempster is seeking a 3-yr contract and that the Brewers weren't willing to go more than two years, I was just about to post a question....Should the Cubs bring back Dempster for a three year deal if they could get a "home town" discount, provided Dempster is willing to sign without a no-trade clause? I know there were some hard feelings when Dempster turned down the trade to Atlanta. So now, after some time to "cool down", how many would still say "no way" to bringing him back?

    Well, I just read that according to a Bruce Levine report, the Cubs have spoken to Dempster's agent about this possibility. Reportedly, the Royals offered him $26M for two years. What if the Cubs could get him for three years and $30M?

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    In reply to WSorBust:

    I wouldn't sign Dempster for 3 years at anywhere near the money he's asking for. 3 years is too much risk at his age, and we should have some younger guys ready for the rotation long before then. 1 year, maybe. 2? I think I'd pass.

    And he can't have a no trade clause of any kind since we are likely to trade him again.

    He's not likely to go for 1 year and an option with no no trade protection.

  • In reply to WSorBust:

    No way. Too much bad history

  • I'd have no problem with Dempster rejoining the Cubs. You are right though, any contract would have to not include a no-trade clause.

  • at $13MM a year, the cubs would be lucky if that translated into $1MM per "Win". Having said that, he really wouldn't be blocking anyone as the only "Core" piece we have in the rotation is Shark unless they extend Garza. Maybe Baker/Feldman next year if they are re-signed, etc... but still No dominant SP candidates above A ball right now, so we have 3 years....

    FWIW, asking for a hometown discount and a no trade clause might be asking for too much.

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Well, $13M seems to be the going rate for annual salaries. The Cubs certainly could use Dempster. He wouldn't be blocking anyone as you said. He's probably going to be looking for some assurance that he won't be traded to a non-contender. If they could sign him for a below market price, in return for giving him a guarantee that he could only be traded to contending teams and could opt out of the last two years of the contract if he is traded? Just thinking out loud but it would merit consideration IMO.

  • Jerry Crasnick ‏@jcrasnick
    Nate Schierholtz has agreed on 1 year deal with Cubs, source says

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    In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Wow, didn't see that one coming. Depends on the salary but he has good career numbers, just never given a shot at playing everyday. I figured the Yankees were going to get him on the cheap. Say $1.5 mil or os.

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Jerry Crasnick ‏@jcrasnick
    Nate Schierholtz also generated interest from #Yankees, #rays, #redsox, #orioles and #mets

    So now lets trade Sori to one of those AL teams.....

  • So does Sappelt & Schierholtz platoon in RF and Dejesus plays CF?

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    In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Probably, but I'd also like to see someone platoon with Dejesus, he was awful vs LHP last year. Schierholtz actually has better numbers vs LHP in his career (although a slightly lower SLG and 4 times as many AB's vs RHP).

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    .270/.319/.409 career numbers.

  • In reply to Just Win:

    Not enough HR power... 24 career HR's in 1200+ AB's over 6 seasons. He does have 75 doubles and 15 triples so maybe somethings there... Can't say I've ever watched him play.

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    In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    I remember him with the Giants. He was a good 4th/5th OF that for whatever reason never got a lot of AB's. His power numbers, as you point out, are not great. But I would think if he got 450-500 AB's that slugging percentage translates to around 10-15 HR's, maybe a little more. He's also going to be 30, so he should be reaching his peak years. He's played almost exclusively RF in his MLB career.

  • In reply to Just Win:

    I'm reading he plays solid Defense and strike out a lot.... seems like he fits Theo/Jed's mold.

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    The deal is worth $2.25MM with $500K in incentives
    Read more at http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/#Ki5qAYelshUpsF2S.99

  • In reply to Just Win:

    Yep, MLB deal. not MiLB...

  • In reply to Just Win:

    Sorry guys, was working on an article for tomorrow. Just put up a quick take on Schierholtz.

  • Hey, we have a good old-fashioned newspaper war in ChiTown:

    From MLBTR: "8:48pm: Levine's report "grossly misrepresents" the nature of the Cubs-Dempster talks, tweets Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times. He says negotiations are not happening and a reunion is implausible.

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    Good value signing. The guy has never gotten a chance at 500abs and was once highly regarded. Could be this years Josh Reddick.....if even a poormans version. Will give you more power/slugging than Dejesus.

    Bold prediction: I think if the cubs see enough out of Brett Jackson in spring training they could trade Dejesus earlier rather than later. Even now, if you compare Bjax and Dejesus as center fielders

    defense in CF - Jackson
    power - Jackson

  • In reply to Marcel Jenkins:

    If they ship him out of town, I'd be happy to keep Kim comfy while he's gone......

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    8:48pm: Levine's report "grossly misrepresents" the nature of the Cubs-Dempster talks, tweets Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times. He says negotiations are not happening and a reunion is implausible.
    Read more at http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/#medH2UddEgQWmQLK.99

    LOL

  • Jon Heyman ‏@JonHeymanCBS
    If you can believe this (I do), schierholtz turned down a 2-yr deal in $5M range.

    Wonder what they sold him on.....

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    Good value signing. The guy has never gotten a chance at 500abs and was once highly regarded. Could be this years Josh Reddick…..if even a poormans version. Will give you more power/slugging than Dejesus.

    Bold prediction: I think if the cubs see enough out of Brett Jackson in spring training they could trade Dejesus earlier rather than later. Even now, if you compare Bjax and Dejesus as center fielders

    defense in CF – Jackson
    power – Jackson
    arm – Jackson
    plate discipline – about equal/maybe slight edge to Jackson
    contact rate/average – Dejesus
    speed – Jackson

    As you can see, Jackson is the better player right now and i’m not even considering what adjustments he’s made but Sveum and FO are still high on him.

    *earlier comment didnt post fully

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    In reply to Marcel Jenkins:

    I think the front office sticks to their guns on BJax in AAA regardless. Also, I'd have to think about this, but do they have enough players who provide what DeJesus provides at the plate? Even if BJax is objectively better, they might prefer the higher on-base numbers DeJesus will likely give in the context of the rest of the lineup. You'd also need someone to lead off.

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    There is another way out of this: Sori leaves town and DDJ goes to left. Though, I agree with you, Bjax doesn't come up until June-ish.

  • Should have a decision from Grilli soon...

    http://www.bleachernation.com/2012/12/06/gammons-jason-grilli-will-decide-between-cubs-blue-jays-giants-and-pirates-in-30-minutes/

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