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Spring Training: Hot starts have put these 10 players on Cubs radar for 2013

Spring Training isn't meaningless for everyone.  For the established veterans it means getting in shape, working on their game, and just getting ready for the season.  But there are also rookies looking to make an impression, young players looking to earn a job, and veterans looking to hang on.  For those players, spring is about impressing early and often.  The goal is either to make the team or put themselves in position for a mid-season call-up, especially with a team like the Cubs who figure to have some turnover during the season.

Here are the 10 players who have raise raised their stock so far this spring...

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  • Very nice article. Thanks John.

  • Thanks...and you're welcome!

  • I was hoping Chavez made the list. Him and Bogusevic were the ones who've jumped out at me. Such a small sample size in spring training, I'm glad they have eyes looking at these guys qualitatively. Maysonet for instance is hitting .188/.278/.438, but the five or so times I've seen him, he's given quality 4-5-6 pitch AB's.

  • In reply to Carne Harris:

    It is a small sample but unfortunately that's the reality for these guys. They have to make a quick impression and then sustain it for all of spring training.

  • In reply to Carne Harris:

    Maysonet has played pretty well too. I don't think he's going to make the team but I'd like to see them keep him in Iowa for depth.

  • Good stuff, John. I would definitely like to see Nick Struck and McNutt. I'm still not sold on BJax. I hope he proves me wrong.

  • In reply to lokeey:

    Thanks. I'm still in wait and see mode on BJax. I'm optimistic but prepared for the worst.

    Really want to see more of Struck and McNutt this spring too.

  • This will probably be the preview/game thread for today.

    Here's the lineup today vs. the White Sox
    1.DeJesus CF
    2. Barney 2B
    3. Schierholtz RF
    4. Soriano LF
    5. Valbuena 3B
    6. Castillo C
    7. Nelson 1B
    8. Maysonet SS
    9. Carlos Villanueva P

  • John, nice article. I'm a sucker for Lists of 10.

    Is there a good reference or translation for spring training hitting? It's great to see these guys doing well, but I know the numbers are inflated from pitchers working on mechanics, etc. At what point do the games become more like a regular season game?

  • In reply to mosconml:

    Ha! Thanks. Lists are fun sometimes. I'm having some fun playing with the new photo gallery toy we have, which is much better and easier to use than the old one.

    I would say they really aren't like regular games until the last week or two of spring training. Some guys have to bring everything they have from day one, which is why you'll see some of them outperform veterans early on.

    Sveum did say he doesn't use spring training as an evaluation tool except for the last spot or two on the roster. I imagine he also uses it to evaluate guys like Junior Lake and Trey McNutt, who have a shot at helping later on in the season.

  • I am honestly really getting excited about the Cubs and the future. I have been on here for a little over a year and a half now, and though I get waves of minor "excitement", I'm now really starting to feel that excitement grow. I think the future is really bright, especially with this management team leading the way. For example, this most recent pickup from Cuba...no one even heard about it, but it could come as a real steal. I see more and more of these in our future.

  • In reply to apalifer:

    I am too. I really like how they relentlessly dig for talent. The more guys you have, the more likely you'll have a few pan out.

  • Good work, John. Did I read that right - they're trying Clevenger at second? Has he played there before?

  • In reply to JerryMartin28:

    Thanks and yes, they're trying him at 2B. He was actually a SS when he was drafted. Cubs immediately converted him to catcher. He says he still feels very comfortable in the infield. I think they'll also try him at 3B if they part ways with Stewart.

  • Good piece. Gotta take some performances with appropriate grains of salt of course but I'm very hopeful about Valbuena. All the while Stewart fades further from my thoughts.

  • In reply to Hubbs16:

    Thanks. Agreed that spring should always be taken with a grain of salt but sometimes it's enough to get a guy a shot.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Oh absolutely. While it is always great just to have baseball back, one of the most exciting aspects of Spring Training for me is that every once in a while someone surprises and plays their way on to the opening day roster. I try to temper my optimism while still hoping for a nice surprise.

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    Great article John, love the blog. I really like how the Cubs are preparing Clevenger, Lake and Watkins to be more flexible in the positions they are playing. Also it is great to see McNutt having a good spring.

  • In reply to Kevin:

    Thanks Kevin.

    I do like that as well. It's a great way to add value to players on your roster. I think Lake and Watkins are potentially a great sub combo for the Cubs perhaps sometime this season and certainly next.

    It also helps that you have a guys ready to plug in at any number of positions if there's an injury or trade.

  • Thanks for the list. It is always fun to read about Cub players who are doing well. How close was Rondon to making the list? I think he is a keeper.

  • In reply to John57:

    Pretty close. He was on original longer list before I pared it down. I considered him and Michael Bowden (1.69 ERA) but ultimately left them off because I think they were likely to make the team and play those middle relief roles even before their nice starts. They sort of solidified their situation more than improved it.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I don't know about Bowden, John. Still walks too many and lets in fat too many inherited runners. Still seems to struggle with a consistent release point on his offspeed pitches, which for him are a necessity. Id rather see them get to the point they can DFA a marginal player like that.

  • In reply to mutant beast:

    They're not at that point now. Bowden is a serviceable guy. He may not be special but he's been getting the job done. When it comes to walks, he's not atrocious. Was at 3.9 walks/9 IP last year. He's a middle reliever, not sure how much you're expecting from him.

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    John, looking at Chavez's numbers, his OBP is lower than his Avg. How is that possible? I can't think of any way that an OBP can be lower than the Avg but I've seen it a couple times. Can you shed some light.

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    In reply to Zachary Myers:

    I looked into that. He has a sac fly and no walks.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    I can't believe I had never realized this was possible.

  • In reply to João Lucas:

    Sacrifices and SFs don't count as abs, they do count as plate appearances, so they count in terms of OBP and OPS.

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    In reply to João Lucas:

    Really, it's only possible in theory or extreme small sample sizes (like Spring Training). What it comes down to is your sacrifices (bunts or flies) need to exceed your walks and HBPs by a pretty significant amount. That just doesn't happen in a full season.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    My bad: bunts aren't included in the OBP calculation.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    I didn't think about sac flies taking away from OBP. Thanks for looking into it Mike.

    Here's a write up from Wikipedia
    For small numbers of at-bats, it is possible (though unlikely) for a player's on-base percentage to be lower than his batting average (H/AB). This happens when a player has almost no walks or times hit by pitch, with a higher number of sacrifice flies.

  • In reply to Zachary Myers:

    Strangely, the same thing happened last year. Even more strangely, I remember it. Soriano was the culprit. I think it lasted awhile too....

  • In reply to Zachary Myers:

    Haha! Mike is right down below. A sac fly counts as a plate appearance but not an official AB. He's walked in the minors, though, including the AA level so I think he'll eventually do that this year as well.

  • I was getting ready for some reason to see Michael Bowden on that Top Ten list.....and he will make the club........because I do not want to see Coleman......

    It seems we are having an abundance of outfielders in our system......and where is Reggie Golden these days?

    2013 might be the year where Theo & Jed make the last major trade pieces to get this club going.....Marmol, Barney & DeJesus will be gone by the July deadline....Garza, I doubt it.....and Soriano will start in LF in 2014 once again.....

    So far, our pitchers who will make the club, are doing okay.....I like to see the hitting pick up......slow starts are not accepted anymore.

  • In reply to CubsTalk:

    Bowden, Coleman, and Rondon just missed the cut list, among others.

  • nice work again John!

    I'm really rooting for McNutt this season. If he can get his command under control, his stuff makes for a very valuable back of the bullpen or SP candidate.....

    I agree that they shouldn't be on your top ten, but any chance Baez or Soler get a cup of coffee this fall? I know they'd have to tear through Daytona and into AA, but that's certainly possible. Jorge is already on the 40 man, but there would have to be a lot of movement prior to Baez appearing.... just curious.

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Thanks. Have always been a fan of McNutt. Good stuff and from what I hear, a good guy as well.

    I thought about putting Baez and Soler on the list for the simple reason that you never rule out anything with elite young talent. They don't play by any standard rules or timelines.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Yeah, I don't think they belong on your list for now. Only because the FO isn't counting on them for any type of contribution this year. But both seemed to hold their own in ST, and have looked better than some Vet's. So if they crush Daytona & AA, we could see them sooner rather than later.... lot's of "if's", but man that would be something, wouldn't it?

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    That would make the end of this season much more exciting than the end of last season!

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Good to see McNutt doing so well.... I was concerned when the first pics of him I saw at ST he looked like he was on the David Wells off-season diet & exercise plan.....

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Looks like he's put on some weight but stuff is still there. Wondering if he was trying to let those nagging injuries heal -- that and I think he just got married. I know I put on a few when that happened :)

    Maybe he'll lose some of that weight as season wears on. I want to see two things out of McNutt this year -- stay healthy and throw strikes. If he does, I'll be happy.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Lots of players get married right before camp.
    Pretty much guarantees they'll have, um, "hot springs".

  • In reply to StillMissKennyHubbs:

    Ha :)

  • Also want to mention another thing about Rondon. FB was down (91-93) but was really impressed that he got swings and misses with his breaking pitch.

    If he had one weakness, it was that breaking ball which was below average, but he's been working on it with Bosio and Sveum said it looked good.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Looks like Rondon was the steal of the rule 5 draft so far.... h/t to incredible scouting by the FO

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Some decent performances so far by Rule 5 guys. Josh Fields 3 scoreless innings but 3 walks. I'd worry about those walks since that has plagued him in the past. Rossenbaum has a 3.00 ERA in 6 IP. Braulio Lauria 3IP, 3.00 ERA but 2 walks. Ryan Pressly 5.1 innings, 0.00 ERA, 2 walks.

  • Good article, John. Gives me insight to the roster-positioning aspects of ST.
    I thought I'd see it asked by now, but no....so what the heck is Bogusevic doing in that photo? Not deer-antler spray, I hope !

  • In reply to StillMissKennyHubbs:

    Haha! We'll know if he starts growing antlers. Actually, it's sun-screen :)

    And thanks!

  • In reply to StillMissKennyHubbs:

    I wondered but was too embarrassed to ask.

  • Going into spring training the front office stressed the importance of starting pitching depth. We expected Baker would not be ready for opening day, and now Garza will not break camp. So T. Wood and Villanueva move up to the rotation.
    Heaven forbid there are any more health problems with the starting staff....who do you think is next on the depth chart to move into the rotation? Rusin?

  • In reply to Rosemary:

    Sveum brought up Drew Carpenter, which is way off the radar for me. He's been a so-so bullpen guy so far and he's not had a good spring.

    I think it's Rusin if he doesn't make the team out of the bullpen. Raley is another guy. I still think they should give Struck a shot if he does well in AAA.

  • I almost cried when I got to Valbuena.

  • In reply to Julie DiCaro:

    Ha! Some of these guys, like Valbuena, are going to be role players. Hoping guys like Jackson and McNutt can be more than that.

  • I cannot go through any more Bleacher Nation type slideshows, but hopefully it was a good one. :) :)

  • In reply to givejonadollar:

    Just a way to get more photos in. Doesn't affect quality of content.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    And I'm assuming you meant Bleacher Report, btw.

  • I'm putting no stock in these numbers. They come against frequently inferior competition, or veterans who aren't trying their hardest. Remember that Joe Mather tore up Mesa last March and then absolutely sucked during the season. Roster decisions should be based on reasonable projections.

  • In reply to Eddie:

    Nobody is saying these guys will be stars or that these stats are meaningful when it comes to projecting regular season performance. What I'm saying is a good spring can get you noticed and it can help you earn a job. Stats are used to illustrate something the player is doing well, not as a projection.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Certainly they can help you earn a job. That's generally what I object to. If we hang onto a guy like Bogusevic, let it be because we need a left handed bench OF, and not because he had a great Spring. I'll take a guy who had a terrible Spring but fills a role and has a better track record over a guy who lights up Spring Training 10 times out of 10. Using Spring stats to determine who gets a place on the 25 man roster will more often than not lead to making bad decisions.

  • In reply to Eddie:

    I don't think there can be too bad a decision because we're talking about a minor role. You have a couple of similar guys going for the same job/role -- you're probably going to go with how they looked in the spring, all other things being fairly equal.

    I don't think there's ever been a case where a team let go of a good player permanently to give a job to a spring phenom. Usually you stick a short term veteran in there until a young guy is ready, but you keep the young guy and send the down to AAA.

    What would constitute a bad decision this year? Bogusevic over Sappelt, with Sappelt going to AAA? Lillibridge over Maysonet? Rusin over Takahashi? It seems small scale to me.

    The only time it gets tricky is if you let go of a player who is out of options and you have to DFA him. But most of the time teams hang on to those guys if they're talented -- regardless of their spring. I'm sure the Cubs will hang on to Bowden and he's not even a big talent.

    Another bad decision may be bringing up a player too early -- but even then it's probably not a big deal. The Cubs gave Kevin Orie a job because of his great spring. Maybe it was too soon, but I really doubt it changed his career. The more likely explanation is that Orie was overrated. The Angels brought up Mike Trout too early and he turned out fine. The Padres brought up Anthony Rizzo too early and he was fine too.

    If we were talking about giving a starting job to Bogusevic over a top prospect who is MLB ready, maybe that's a mistake too -- but as long as that prospect is still in your system and you don't trade him because you think Bogusevic is the second coming of Roy Hobbs, then it's easily correctable. You just bring him up later with little to no loss.

    When it comes to these last spots, it doesn't matter all that much, not enough to make a really regrettable decision. At any rate, most of these guys having a good spring will probably fill a gap in the minor league system and they'll have to keep performing there if they're going to get a more permanent job at the MLB level.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Touche. The Mather decision still sits poorly with me, but I guess it really didn't matter who the fifth outfielder on a 101 loss team was.

  • In reply to Eddie:

    I remember quite a few were ticked off because he beat out Campana. Cubs would have lost either way. Maybe we should be upset that we had to make a decision between those two to begin with!

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    Exactly.....it's like picking a prom date and your choices are between the girl w 3 eyes or the girl w 4 ears.

  • In reply to Jim Odirakallumkal:

    There is no choice there.

    You can cover up the ears with her hair.

    You need a pillowcase to cover up her eyes.

  • Did most of the prospects battling for a spot on the 25 man, and not yet established big leaguers, play winter ball somewhere in Latin America?
    Often, guys who played winter ball put up better numbers in the first half of spring training.

  • In reply to Rosemary:

    Valbuena, Chavez, and Lake played winter ball. Watkins and Struck played in the Fall League, though Watkins didn't play much, was a replacement for Baez when he got hurt.

    Other guys who played winter ball -- Maysonet, Sappelt, Szczur, Villanueva, Gonzalez, Cabrera, Dolis...are off to slow starts.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I think this might have been a problem with stats a while ago, but nowadays, every veteran knows his job relies on him staying in top physical shape year round so they are plenty ready to face live competition.

  • In reply to Andrew:

    I agree.

  • Cubs take 1-0 lead as Nate Scheirholtz triples in David DeJesus. Both got hits against lefties.

  • Mather has made me really hate spring training stats but I've liked the stat baseball reference has for average level of opponent competition. Looking at most of these players average level of competition, Valbuena is the only one that has played against mainly major league pitchers which is pretty exciting given how well he has played. Also nice to see Soler and Baez haven't been completely overmatched by pitchers who are on average above AAA.

  • In reply to Andrew:

    Oh, I agree they don't mean much, if anything, other than it's a reflection that they are playing well at that time against that particular level of competition. They're pretty much useless for any kind of projection -- but if you're trying to get the manager's attention, then you have to play well early and often. Those players are playing in the here and now, which is what those numbers are measuring. They'll worry about tomorrow later. They have to get there first.

  • I remember Theo or Hoyer saying last year that they put much more stock in what a player did the previous year and how they improved than what they did for a 30 day period in the spring. I was thrilled when I read this because of all the horrible decisions that were made in the past on guys that had hot springs (which in most cases were not reflective of their past performance) and immediately failed once the season started. We can all come up with a long list of names, Mather being the most recent. Speaking of Mather, he is one of the negatives on the chart of Theo and company decisions. I don't blame them as much for keeping him after ST, but for keeping him all year and playing him, even though he was horrible. He should have been dumped very early.

  • In reply to cubman:

    Well, that goes without saying. You're not making big decisions on spring training performance. We're just talking about players putting themselves on the radar with their performance.

    It's easy to say what these numbers mean nothing but they do mean something when you're trying to get a job or to put yourself somewhere on the depth chart. You're trying to look at process more than results, but those short term results are often a reflection of that process to some degree.

    You can say what you want about Bogusevic's numbers not meaning anything but if he were hitting making good contact but hitting .071, you can't deny that's going to negatively affect his chances -- or that of any player who is looking to latch on. The reality is that some of these players have short window to perform and those with lesser track records have much less margin for error.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I agree with the putiing themselves on the radar part of ST, but they have to continue to perform as the season starts while in the minors before it can be taken seriously. I was thinking more of guys that in a 30 day ST period outperform anything they have ever done and management takes that as gospel and bring them north, or even gives them a starting job. That has happened way too much in the past and I think and hope that these regime won't do that. Of course everyone gets caught up in the wishful thinking part of it. Who was the 3B about 15 or so years ago, that had 2 hot springs, was given the starting job both years and as soon as the season started crapped out two years in a row? I'll probably remember his name as soon as I hit send.

  • In reply to cubman:

    I knew I'd think of it after I sent last message. Kevin Orie.

  • In reply to cubman:

    Of course. I don't think anyone is saying that guys should be made starters purely based on what they did this spring. This not what the article was about at all. We know the front office won't make decisions solely on spring performance either.

    What you do is give yourself an opportunity and sometimes that opportunity starts with what you do in the spring. What a player does with that opportunity is a separate subject.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Sorry, I'm not saying that is what your outstanding article is about. I'm just extrapolating on ST in general. I've been disappointed too many times on this bankrupt thinking by the Cubs mangement in the past. A couple of years ago they brought 4 relief pitchers north after they all had great spings which were above and beyond anything they had done in the past. They all crapped out as I expected and it lead to a lousy year, when they should have gone out and obtained some real relief pitchers.

  • In reply to cubman:

    Oh, I agree there. Stars aren't made in spring training.

    The bullpen didn't bother me last year because they really didn't have much else. They took guys who they thought had good arms. They had some vets in camp but only Camp proved worthwhile. Personally, I don't know if I'd spend a lot on the bullpen to get proven guys at this point in the rebuilding process. They were thinking long term with the guys they went with.

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    Just looked up Chavez. He hasn't hit at all in the two tries at AA: .222/.322/.369 in 685 ABs. But he's really looked good in Spring Training, as John implied above. Hopefully he's figured something out and he becomes a steal.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    That's another thing you look for -- some players make adjustments and they're different players than they were a year ago.

    We noted Hector Rondon, who has added what appears to be a quality breaking ball. Something he hasn't had in his entire career. We know that Struck has changed his delivery, as has Dolis. Jackson has changed his swing.

    Hopefully Chavez figured something out that can allow him to take that next step.

  • This new photo gallery is pretty awesome, nice work John. Hope to see more of these for prospect oriented lists and such.

  • In reply to Furiousjeff:

    Thanks. I'll do my pre-season top 25 prospects on the photo gallery. I've done my post season, next is pre-season, then we'll do a mid-season list.

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    Does anyone know why Adrian Cardenas isn't playing? If he is injured to what extent? Couldn't even find anything via Google.

  • In reply to Jim Pedigo:

    He's an unsigned minor league free agent.

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    In reply to CubsML:

    Ok, thanks, I guess that explains it. I'm surprised no one signed him though. An infielder that hits.

  • I see that Furcal is going to be out for the whole season -- TJ surgery. So much for his "rest and rehab" offseason regimen.
    I really hope the Cards go with Kozma at short all year. He showed his flaws in the postseason.
    But I wouldn't be surprised if they go hard at Tulo.
    And no way should the Cubs help them unless it's a robbery job in our favor.

  • In reply to StillMissKennyHubbs:

    I think they're going to go with Kozma/Cedeno and then make a trade later in the season if it doesn't work out for them.

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    In reply to StillMissKennyHubbs:

    I think if any trade helps the cubs, we should stop being precious about who it is we're trading with. white sox, red sox, cards, same division, whoever - look at the end and not the means. See below, I propose barney for one of their pitchers or 3b prospects

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    Wonder what Loux is doing wrong. He's gotta be gone in cuts tomorrow.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Don't know exactly but Loux's a guy who depends a lot on location. He doesn't have an out pitch -- so if he's not locating, it's tough because he's not going to beat MLB hitters with his raw stuff.

  • Don't know what Loux is doing, but if one more person in my office says "You can put it on the board!", I'm going to lose it.

  • In reply to Denizen Kane:

    Haha! Why are White Sox fans always parroting Hawk Harrelson?

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    And here I thought that Hack Horrorson was the one parroting Sox fans.

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    Furcal out for the season for St L. Cards not looking for outside shortstop help "for now," but if things don't work out during the season:

    furcal .264/.325/.346 5 HR
    barney .254/.299/.354 4 HR

    Barney's cheap, gold glover, career shortstop, and Cards can afford to carry his low offensive numbers. If they don't want to commit to a high-priced free agent or make a major trade Barney fills in nicely for Furcal. He's also 8 years younger and could handle the job long term. Barney might be worth a carson kelly, tyrell jenkins or john gast.

  • In reply to SKMD:

    Not a bad idea, SKMD.

    Do you think Barney could fetch two of Jenkins + Lyons (a LHP who throws a lot of strikes, currently ranked ~19th in the Cards prospect list).

    That said, I heard Cards would most likely go with a Kozma/Cedeno combo at SS for the first part of the season.

    First post on this site...good to be here. There are a lot of great articles, informative posts, and rich conversation.

  • In reply to SymposiumX:

    Welcome to this site. It's the best.

  • In reply to SymposiumX:

    Thanks SymposiumX! Glad you decided to chime in. As for a Barney deal, I'll let SKMD give you his opinion on the deal -- I'm one of the guys who think Cards will stand pat for awhile.

  • In reply to SKMD:

    I don't see either team in a rush to make that deal. Cards will probably try their guys first before they try to switch Barney back to SS -- especially since almost all his value is in his defense. No guarantee he'll be as good at SS.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    I completely agree the cards will stand pat for now, I'm talking about June. furcal is in the final year of a 2 yr, 14 mil deal. At 35, if the cards had the option of a cheaper, younger version of his same offensive numbers in Barney, you'd think they'd have to consider it. And nobody questions barney's work ethic; he may not have an errorless streak at SS like he did in '12, but you know he's going to work his butt off to relearn the position.

    as for what exactly we could get i trade, that's above my pay grade. One disappointing thing I've seen with theo/jed is that they seem to undervalue their trade chips - Colvin being exhibit A, but even (sorry to beat a dead horse) Zambrano - worth nothing to the Cubs because of their bad history with him, but IMO worth more than Chris Volstad to someone else.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    I totally agree the cards will stand pat for now, I'm talking about June. Furcal is in the last year of a 2 yr, 14 mil deal. At 35, if the Cards have the option of a cheaper, younger version of his offensive numbers in Barney, you'd think they'd have to consider it. And no one questions Barney's work ethic - he may not have an errorless streak at short like he did in '12, but he'll work his butt off to relearn the position

    As for what we might get in return for him, that's above my pay grade. One disappointing thing I've seen in Jed/Theo is that they seem to undervalue our trade chips - Colvin being exhibit A, but even (sorry to beat a dead horse) Zambrano - not worth anything to the cubs because of the bad history between them, but worth more to someone else than a Chris Volstad.

  • In reply to SKMD:

    Agreed. I think things could change by midseason for the Cards -- especially if they're struggling at SS. It wouldn't surprise me at all if they made a move for a younger, defensively oriented SS.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    sorry about the duplicate post, the first time I sent it it disappeared into the cloud.

  • In reply to SKMD:

    Haha! No worries...happens once in a while.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    All the fans down here think Kozma will be better than Furcal. In six minor league seasons he had a .236 career average, and he was so bad at shortstop in AAA last season, they moved him to second after 40 games. But in Cardinal koolaid land down here, he is the next Cal Ripken.
    Question for some intelligent baseball fans. In a trade for Tulowitzki, what do the Rockies ask St. Louis for? I told some guys the conversation would start with Taveras and Miller, and they think I am out of my mind. They think this AAA first baseman Adams and some second tier pitching prospects and Colorado would dump Tulo. This is what I have to deal with around here!

  • Tulo is one of the best players at a premium position. I think it would take at least 2 of the Cards top prospects + a little something to sweeten the deal.

  • They like their scrappy shortstops in St. Louis. Maybe Kozma just fits their mold. Hard to believe he'll be any better than Furcal. I would think they'd have to ask for Tavares and a top pitching prospect for starters if they want to deal for Tulo. Get the feeling Cards will want to hang on to their prospects, though.

  • In reply to SKMD:

    Thank you for the warm welcomes. I also concur that the Cards will stay pat right now, and then look for an upgrade at SS is it isn't working out for them.

  • In reply to SKMD:

    I don't think Theo/Jed undervalued Colvin. Colvin doesn't cut it as a regular, and he's nothing special as an occasional starter either, and he's the opposite of rare as a corner OF/1B. Stewart isn't working out, but a LHB 3B with a history of some big-league success held quite a bit more value at the time. IMO, enough to justify Colvin (marginal), LeMahieu (less than marginal). Apparently, you've praised Colvin a lot in the past, and I haven't read those. But I can tell we rate him quite differently.

  • In reply to michaelc:

    I have no problem with the Stewart/Colvin trade either. Some might compare Colvin's best year with Stewart's worst and come to the conclusion that it was a bad trade, but if one looks at all the players involved and what they've done in their careers as a whole so far, it was basically a wash.

  • Good innng by Whitenack is really the only positive so far.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Next inning not so good, though.

  • Safe to say that Loux will not be heading North with this team.

  • In reply to CubsTalk:

    I'd say that's pretty safe.

  • The "Busts" of Spring so far......

    D. Train Willis.........several throws and you are out.....
    R. Dolis........this guy should have been better by now....
    M, Szczur......no bat, 8 K's.....don't need anymore Campana's
    DeJesus.......come on man, at least hit your weight
    Sappelt.........Theo will Twitter you that you did not make the club
    Raley.............ERA over 20.00.....you must love Iowa
    Marmol..........walks, walks, walks, walks.........
    Garza...........They should put "FRAGILE" on the back of your jersey.
    Stewart.........DAMAGE GOODS on your jersey

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to CubsTalk:

    LOL.....Can't be surprised too much about Marmol. He's very charitable hence all the free passes.

    Garza's injury has ruined the spring for me. I wanted to believe the Cubs had a chance to start the season as long as they got a little bit of hitting.

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