Cubs Notes: Waiting for Girardi; Teams calling on Samardzija's availabilty; Also Arroyo, Tanaka, and Starbucks part 2?

Cubs Notes: Waiting for Girardi; Teams calling on Samardzija's availabilty; Also Arroyo, Tanaka, and Starbucks part 2?

There isn't much news today from a Cubs standpoint on a late Sunday morning, but we'll round up whatever we can find...

News and Notes...

  • Update 11:30 AM:  There are teams interested in Jeff Samardzija if the Cubs can't get a deal worked out with their big RHP including the Nationals and the Blue Jays.  The Nationals see Samardzija as a potential replacement for Dan Haren while the Blue Jays may lose Josh Johnson.  We also know that the Diamondbacks were interested around the trade deadline.  The Cubs would likely prefer to get a contract done with Samardzija and keep him in the fold, but if a compromise can't be reached, then the Cubs need to explore their options.  Samardzija is considered a core piece, but no player is untradeable when you are in the Cubs situation and there is some thought that if Girardi does indeed come to the Cubs, then the Cubs may be open to expanding their search to bring in talent from other organizations.


  • Nick Cafardo writes that the Cubs always knew Joe Girardi was a long shot but they're going to give it a shot anyway. But his argument isn't a new or creative one, it goes like this, "Let’s be real, the Yankees would be stupid to let Girardi go without tying him up with a lucrative deal. Girardi was one of the top managers in baseball this season. You normally can’t have that many injuries — lose that much payroll — and survive. The Yankees not only survived, they took their quest for a playoff spot into the final week of the season."  Eh, didn't people say Theo would be crazy to leave Boston too?  i think you need more behind it than that.
  • The part I like about the article is that Tony Pena wouldn't be a consideration to replace Girardi.  I had Pena on my list of candidates at #4 and though he isn't on the Cubs list, I spoke to a top industry source that considers him a great motivator and great working with young players.  If Pena comes along with Girardi, I'd be very happy about having that combo of leadership talent on the field.
  • Patrick Mooney writes that as the Cubs pursue a possible former catcher at manager, it could affect what they do as far as their catcher on the field.   Mooney believes the Cubs could make a run at Jarrod Saltalamacchia or Brian McCann, with Salatamacchia looking like the more likely of the two.  This of course, is assuming they don't get qualifying offers, which would complicate things.  We mentioned similar thoughts and such a move would likely cause a domino effect with the Cubs then looking to deal Castillo for another left-handed hitter such, or less likely, use Castillo as part of a package to obtain David Price.
  • Nick Cafardo also suggests that the Cubs would be interested in free agent to be Bronson Arroyo, but here's the catch: He wants a 3 year deal at age 37 and has peripherals that are not as good as his results last year.  Does that sound like a Cubs signing to you?

Just for fun...

  • The sense I'm getting from Girardi-hopeful Cubs fans is that the longer it takes, the better it is for the Cubs.  After all, if he wanted to stay in NY, why wouldn't he have taken the deal by now?  And just to add fuel to the fire (and a little bit of fun), reader Michael swears he saw Girardi at the Hawks game yesterday in the VIP boxes.  Now that would be interesting, wouldn't it?  Starbucks, part 2?  Of course, we don't even know if the Cubs have permission to talk to Girardi yet or that it had anything to do with the Cubs at all.  Heck, we have no proof that it was Girardi or just a guy that looks like him, but if any of you are going to the Bears game tonight and see the Yankees manager up in the luxury suites at Soldier Field, then we can really have some fun.
  • Speaking of some fun, The Onion did a nationwide poll on the Cubs next manager.
  • MLB Trade Rumors does a Cub oriented "Free Agent Faceoff" comparing former Cubs pitcher Matt Garza to the free agent many of us hope the Cubs will sign, Masahiro Tanaka.  Of the people polled, 2/3 prefer Tanaka.

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  • I'd like to see us keep Welly, but if these rumors are true, it seems like the FO is trying to look for creative ways to add talent given the lack of funds provided by ownership and the weak FA class, plus the markets of Choo and Ellsbury.

  • In reply to Caps:

    That's exactly what it would be about. Felzz said it best a while back. The Cubs don't have a plan -- they have multiple plans (or at least a plan with multiple routes to get there).

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    In reply to Caps:

    'Morning caps. If the two runors are true, it looks like they're trying to find a creative way to get more left-handed bats in the line-up. After seeing what Hunter Pence signed for, I shudder to think what Choo or Ellsbury would get on the open market.

  • In reply to Mike Partipilo:

    Choo reportedly looking for $100M, as is Ellsbury. Don't want them at those prices.

  • In reply to Mike Partipilo:

    Good morning to you... Good info, I agree.

  • Maybe they can can drive up the price of Girardi so high that there will be a little less money for the Yanks to bid on Tanaka.

  • In reply to DemonBerryhill:

    That would be great if that would happen. Guessing, though, if Yanks want Tanaka they'll try and get him no matter what happens with Girardi.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    The Cubs may more money to bid on Tanaka if they lose out on Girardi.

  • John. Can you walk us through the posting process and timeline for Tanaka? Thank you.

  • In reply to Third Generation:

    Normally he'd probably become available in time for the winter meetings and then teams would submit a bid in what amounts to a blind auction for the rights to negotiate. If the bid is won, then that team gets exclusive rights to negotiate. The process takes at least a few weeks overall and sometimes more, but probably won't start until November or December.

    There are some who want to change the process so that the top 3 teams get rights to negotiate. If that's the case, then I'm less sure on the time frame, probably the same as any other free agent once the bid winners are known.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Thanks John. Who receives the posting fee? His current team in Japan?

  • In reply to Third Generation:

    Yes. It's their only compensation for losing him.

  • In reply to Third Generation:

    Perhaps we could offer up Jay Cutler, Kevin Gregg, Carlos Boozer and Rahm.

  • Absolutely no to Arroyo. Ugh. I'm also not totally in love with trading Castillo as the arrow is really pointing up on him. Good OB skills and while the HRs weren't there, he showed more power in the 2nd half than the 1st which suggests improvement there.

  • In reply to Pura Vida:

    I'm not either, but I think it's a case of the Cubs exploring all possibilities.

  • As for Girardi the $$ that are rumored, his decision is going to based entirely based on where he wants to be.

  • In reply to 44slug:


  • Jeff has not shown that he is worth the big money. I would trade
    him if we can get a great pitching prospect (and more) that will be ready no later than 2014.

  • In reply to emartinezjr:

    Nor has he done enough to warrant a no trade clause I've read that he wants. I don't see him as a long-term core member of the Cubs and the Cubs would be better off trading him because unless a miracle happens he'll never be a #1 pitcher he claims he wants to be.

  • In reply to JeffK:

    The NTC sticks in my throat

  • In reply to Hubbs16:

    I agree, especially when he knows the Cubs FO will not give players no trade clauses.

  • In reply to JeffK:

    It's either his way of saying "Bye" or a chit to played for a higher salary and/or longer contract term IMO. At the present, I lean towards the latter interpretation.

  • Just added update for those who haven't seen it. Teams calling on Samardzija.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Do you think shark is. Gonna compare his price and worth to Jackson and want a better contract?

  • Not saying Girardi couldn't have been at the Hawks game, but if he really was in town yesterday, wouldn't it be more likely he'd be at the Northwestern/OSU game?

  • In reply to YouCannotBeSerious:

    Maybe. That part was just for fun, as it says, so take it with a grain of salt.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Salt taken. I have a media question for you John. Based on how you've seen this story develop and the coverage, who do you think is most likely to break Girardi's decision on the Yanks offer? The New York media, Chicago media, or a national sportswriter?

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Salt taken. I have a media question for you John. Based on how this story has developed and the coverage of it, who do you think is most likely to break Girardi's decision on the Yanks offer? The New York media, Chicago media, or a national sportswriter?

  • In reply to YouCannotBeSerious:

    I think the New York media has the advantage because the initial decision will be made with the Yankees offer. National guys might beat them to it but I think Chicago media might be at a disadvantage here.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I'd bet Peter Gammons against the field considering his connections with the Cubs & Yanks Front Offices. He's a badass.

  • Hey John, don't know if you've seen this, but John Sickels (Minor League Baseball) updated his top 75 prospect list

    And it seems like Javier Baez (8), Kris Bryant (19), Albert Almora (22), Jorge Soler (27), CJ Edwards (41) and Arismendy Alcantara (70) made the list and Pierce Johnson and Dan Vogelbach received honorable mention.

    Have to wonder if besides the 6 that made it, Pierce Johnson has a chance to sneak into the top 100... Mike Olt probably dropped, but there's always the chance he can perform like the top 50 prospect that he was.

    In other news... The Cubs seem to have signed Danny Canela and Alan Oaks.

    And according to Baseball America, the Cubs have re-signed Marcus Hatley... And they also say this about Albert Almora:

    “even with a lack of eye-popping raw speed, the Cubs’ Albert Almora is a potential Gold Glove winner at the Major League level thanks to terrific first-step quickness and wide ranging territory.” Almora is “also a plus-thrower who racked up seven assists in 59 games.”

    All here:

  • In reply to Caps:

    I know they've always liked Hatley.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    And thanks for the links, Caps!

  • In reply to Caps:

    Ever since the IFA and draft caps were implemented, I'd felt that indy ball was the new inefficiency to find talent. Looks like Canela might actually turn into something. Oaks looks like organizational filler, though quality filler.

  • If Girardi does come (I still think the odds are against it), I'd love to see Tony Peña come with him. Peña has been one of my favorite baseball people, dating back to his playing days. (I'm on record as saying I wouldn't mind him as manager).

    I don't follow the AL much so I don't know a lot about Salt but I'm definitely not for acquiring McCann. He's 30 years old and his skills are slipping. He also had some injury problems (as most any C does when he starts getting some miles on him). I think Castillo is just starting to scratch the surface of what he can be. In my opinion, he should be part of the "core".

    I'm all for shopping Samardj and of course whether he is moved or not would depend on the return. He has talent and potential but I have my doubts he's ever going to put it all together. He's to the age that it's time to move from potential to results.

    I like Arroyo but only on a one year deal or maybe one year with a club option. He's just too old to go 3 years.

    I've only seen Marcus Hatley pitch one time in person, and he was horrid that night (lost the game by throwing a pitch to the screen on an IBB). Only one game, though. I think he's worth the re-sign.

  • In reply to GAHillbilly:

    Girardi/Pena would be a great tandem, as they have been in NY. Agree on Arroyo on a one year deal maybe, definitely not 3.

    Hatley is the kind of guy scouts ilke. Athletic, good FB, good breaking pitch, great size. All the ingredients are there.

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    If Girardi is hired, and he's bringing his Yankees staff with, do we get Larry Rothschild back too?

  • In reply to Just Win:

    Don't think Rothschild is coming. I think Bosio gets a strong recommendation and Rothschild has some loyalty to Hendry.

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    Nice pic, but what is the Godot we're waiting for - Girardi to decide, samardzija to sign, or the WS trophy?

  • In reply to SKMD:

    Ha ;) It's Girardi. But I like the WS trophy idea too.

  • With respect to possibly Girardi being in Chicago, Jordan Bernfield had a Twitter post yesterday showing a photo of a car with license plates reading Girardi at the Northwestern pregame festivities. It was homecoming at NU yesterday so Joe or some other Girardi could have been in town.

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    In reply to JeffK:

    If journalism was still alive, he would have staked out that car to see who claimed it.

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    In reply to JeffK:

    I'm guessing Joe would have flown in and driven a rental car. It was likely someone else.

  • In reply to Mike Partipilo:

    I would agree with you. Just stating what was tweeted. Here's the tweet.

  • In reply to Mike Partipilo:

    Good call, plus it's hard to believe that Joe's driving a Kia.

  • In reply to Boogens:

    Yes, I would agree with you.

  • Arroyo has had a solid career - but not exceptional. Him thinking he can get a 3 year deal at this stage of his career is kind of unrealistic of him IMO.

    Two years maybe - with an incentive laden 2nd year - and with a buyout option at a low price if he wants a 3rd year. And even then - with the options our Cubs have waiting in the wings that should start arriving in the next year or two - not even sure that adding him is a good idea for even a fairly low price for more than a year's flier.

  • In reply to drkazmd65:

    It's unrealistic and insane at age 37 asking for a 3 year contract, but we've seen GMs being equally insane and giving out 10 year contract to players who are on the decline or will be so far in decline that they can't fulfill their contracts at advanced ages.

  • Ha, great pic. Waiting for Joedot.

    I've always thought Beef's gonna hit, and his pitch framing and defense has gotten much better, but I think the one mark against him at this point is still his game calling. I think both Garza and Samardzija at one point publicly voiced a preference for Navarro.

  • In reply to Carne Harris:

    Ha! I was trying to think of a play on words like that, but I figured I would just leave headline is and you guys would catch it.

    Navarro was Garza's security blanket, but overall he's supposedly pretty good and much improved -- but he's still young, so room to improve.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    You can tell he's a willing pupil, talking about wanting to pick Molina's brain. Just a matter of whether he can be cerebral enough to outthink opposing batters.

  • In reply to Carne Harris:

    That's one of the reasons I didn't like Garza and don't like it from Samardj, either. Keep that stuff in house. Never, ever, rag a teammate in the press.

  • In reply to GAHillbilly:

    Totally. In hindsight that seems like an early warning sign about Sveum and some of the stuff we saw at the end of the year.

  • Arroyo never misses a start, and in my opinion, is the kind of pitcher that can pitch acceptably into his 40s, much like Moyer (of course, not into his 50s). I wouldn't mind the Cubs taking a three year shot with him, as long as the price isn't crazy. I would go three years, thirty million.

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    In reply to DaveP:

    Here's my two cents...The Cubs are expected to be major players in the bidding for Tanaka and I think we already have at least three starting pitchers better than Arroyo, plus jackson who is guaranteed $39mil over the next 3 yrs. I wouldn't pay even close to $10mil/yr for a 5th starter, and that's all Arroyo would be on this squad.

  • In reply to Mike Partipilo:

    That about sums it up Mike. They don't need to go fishing for Arroyo as the options already on the table are likely be be as good (likely better), and cheaper.

    Unless they clear the decks in some way with a major trade that were to clear out more than a couple from among the cadre of starters or potential starters they already have on the roster - they don't need to go fishing for starting pitching.

    Offense - on base percentage especially - is what they need most for next year and the years to follow.

  • All year it seemed like the Cubs had a better chance to win with Navarro starting. Do we have numbers on that? I'm watching the bucs-cards game here, listening for the thousandth time how important it is for a catcher to frame pitches. The ump is watching the pitch where it crosses the plate. Is the ball once it hits the glove not blocked from the ump's view by the catcher's body?

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    In reply to wastrel:

    The ump can see the ball into the glove in most cases. Many umps get close enough to dart their tongue in the catcher's ear, if he were so inclined. (I don't think "Handsome" Steve Clevenger was ever subject to such advances, but I digress.)

    Anyway, my son was a catcher in college. He would tell you that some umps are more likely to bite than others. But if you're good and frame the pitches properly, it can definitely help you get the majority of borderline calls.

  • In reply to Mike Partipilo:


  • In reply to Mike Partipilo:

    Great explanation Mike, thanks! One additional question for you if you're so inclined. To the non-catcher like me, framing the pitch would seem to be one of the easier skills to add. Thoughts?

  • In reply to Good Captain:

    The trick to framing pitches is to do it and do it subtly. You can't just move your arm 3-4 inches, as that's obvious. You have to fool the ump without him knowing he's being fooled.

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    In reply to Good Captain:

    Hilly give a good explanation but there are other subtleties too. One of which is catching a borderline low pitch palm up, so you're naturally pulling the ball up into the zone and giving the ump a look at it, rather than stabbing at it and pushing it downward.

  • In reply to Mike Partipilo:

    Thanks Mike and Hillbilly! I appreciate the substantive replies.

  • Off topic but the ump blew the call on the double steal -- and, of course, it favors the Cardinals, who go on to tie the game. Have I ever mentioned how much I loathe the Cardinals?

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Preachin' to the choir m'boy

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    Tell me, John. To what degree dost thou loathe the Cardinals?

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    In reply to Mike Partipilo:

    Rumor has it that John hates the Cardinals so bad that the last time he was in STL he urinated on Jack Buck's statue.

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    In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    Or was that Felzz that did that?

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    Tom's article today offers his opinion that the Cubs may be looking for impact talent as well as a manager. He speaks of how the Rays may want to talk about Price. Well of course they do. They can't afford him over the long term and they want a better haul for Price then they would want to offer him up this winter. And the Cubs have the prospects to land him if they want. IF.....big if

    But then I started to think. This FO most definitely has a "to do list" for this offseason. If Theo and Jed feel it's time then we may have started to see the first domino fall.

    1. Fire Sveum
    2. Hire Girardi
    3. Sign Tanaka

    Now if these first 3 items fall into place. We may be in for an exciting ride with some interesting additions and subtractions. If we really want to go for it then we are going to have to give up some talent to get talent. Which prospects would be untouchable at this time? I'd say that would have to be Baez, Bryant, and Almora. These guys are just too valuable to be moved if we are to expect any long term success.

    We've seen lots of rumors out there about possible additions. I don't know how each deal would go down but I could see the following:


    Wellington Castillo
    Arodys Vizcaino

    These list of players on the Subtraction side might hurt and I think there may be even a few more that are at the lower levels as throw ins to complete this major transformation. The team we see next opening day may be drastically changed but yet we still have 3 of our main prospects.

    2014 gets us back to over .500 with both Baez and Bryant knocking on the door for a promotion to Chicago. This would give us a nice mix of young guys and veterans with a big time top of the rotation featuring Tanaka, Price and Wood.

    2015 is when the final pieces are added and questions answered.

    All just rumors but sometimes where there is smoke there is fire.

    Whatcha guys think? Will the Cubs make any of these types of biog moves?

  • In reply to bocabobby:

    Why get rid of Soler, Alcantara, Lake and Vizcaino? That's like taking 1 step forwards and 3 backwards... Losing Soler, Alcantara, Lake and Vizcaino will set the team back and create more hole than we can fill with Cargo, Price and Salty.

    I wouldn't trade Soler... Maybe Alcantara if him, Welly and a throw-in can bring Price... But I wouldn't mess with trading Baez, Almora, Bryant or Soler.

  • In reply to bocabobby:

    I think making that many big moves is unlikely. When we talk about this kind of stuff, look at it as one possible avenue. I'd be very surprised if they'll do all of them.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    That's really only 3 moves and one only cost money. It not completely crazy.

  • In reply to KGallo:

    I feel like landing Price is unlikely because you're looking at dealing surplus value when you deal with Tampa. It's somethings this FO would rather not do.

  • In reply to bocabobby:

    So Theo and Hoyer have said for the last two years that the long term key to success is building "numbers", or having a talent laden minor leagues, as in DEPTH, and now you decided to clear house? If you include Lake, there are 5 minor leaguers there, including a pitcher that was ranked #13, and two other ranked guys, which is why everyone gets so into the draft in the first place.

  • In reply to Quasimodo:

    Why do you think they build numbers? Keep the the ones they wait trade the ones they don't and fill with FA along the way. Why is this so hard to understand?

  • In reply to KGallo:

    St Louis never does a 4 top prospect for one veteran player. Either does Atlanta. I would rather wait the 4 to 5 years that Theo said it would take to get to the sustainable play off team every year mode. I do not want to go all Kenny Williams after year 2 of the rebuild.

    And when there is doubt about the trade, Theo said he would err on the side of the future.

  • Hey John. I haven't checked recently. What prospects are valuable from Toronto and Washington? I know Toronto flipped quite a few last year.

  • In reply to cubs25:

    Washington has Giolito (RHP) Goodwin (CF) and Cole (RHP). Toronto still has some good arms like Sanchez, Norris, Stroman, Osuna, Smoral

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    In regards to the Jeff Samardzija rumors, I'm sure more teams that those two are calling about him. Anyways, I hope there are, because I'm not all that enamored by what Blue Jays and Nationals farm systems.

  • Lol, love the Becket image. No one waits for Godot quite like a Cubs fan. Also, lol, the onion poll makes me feel even more like Estragon.

  • In reply to Oneear:

    Ha! Very true. It should probably be the team logo.

  • Gonzales of the Trib is saying the Cubs are leaking that they will beat the Yanks' offer. He's who I'm rooting for.

    I'd love to watch Greg Maddux manage, though. He'd be so wiley.

  • In reply to CGunz:

    Yeah, that would be real interesting at worst.

  • Let's say all of these rumors happen... I'm guessing our lineup would include C Salty, 1B Rizzo, 2B Barney/Valbuena 3B Mike Olt, SS Castro, LF Lake CF Bogusevic RF Cargo...

    Then the rotation would be: David Price, Tr Wood, Masahiro Tanaka, Edwin Jackson and Jake Arrieta.

    Doesn't look too bad... Wonder what would be on sale... Maybe Shark, Welly, Schierholtz, Alcantara and Hendricks? Although I have the feeling the FO really like Alcantara and Hendricks.

  • In reply to Caps:

    would depend what we gave up to gain that line up. I personally don't like it. Another year of Barney/Valbuena at second would put me over the edge. Based on what they did last season. Nobody knows on Olt. Rangers had no problem parting with him this time and he wasn't good in triple A. It is hard for me to believe all of a sudden he finds it in the off season. Bogo can't play every day. As far as rotation goes do we have to watch Jackson pitch again?

  • In reply to WaitTilNextYear:

    Well, I'd like to see us get Kelly Johnson this offseason... But the team has to be careful and not load up the IF.

    What if you're wrong and Olt bounces back? Where do you play Baez, Olt, Alcantara and Villanueva in 2014 if you block them with FA's? And what do you do with Edwin Jackson and the next 3 years of his contract? Bury him in the pen?

    Advanced metrics say Jackson was unlucky due to his low strand rate and high babip and way lower FIP... Not to mention, he had been good 4 years in a row leading to 2013... I'd give him at least one more try in 2014, if he doesn't bounce back then maybe he could be a reliever in the last 2 years of his contract.

  • In reply to Caps:

    Oh ans about Bogusevic... I agree, he's not an everyday player... Do you pay 100 mil for Choo or Ellsbury after losing almost 100 games? I think that's worse.

  • In reply to Caps:

    Kelly Johnson wouldn't be bad. I do not like his batting average the last 2 years. I like a higher average guy at 2b with some speed. As far as load up on the inf spot is not a bad thing especially if all are home grown players. I would not go out and sign a bunch of FA to load up.

    I am hope I am wrong but that would have to be one serious bounce to be a started coming out of spring training. And why did we sign the Brewers guy? I do not want to go out and get inf FA. Never said that. I do no is I dont want to watch Barney and Valbuena in the line up anymore. If we are gonna go out and get a FA we need an legit outfielder. If all of those guys are ready then we put them in a spot to play or trade for a area we are lacking.

    I thought signing jackson was a huge huge mistake. I thought Theo would be smarter about that contract. I know we are stuck with him. Hope someone will want a trade for him? If he has another year like he did, he will pitch himself out of the rotation. I do not feel jackson was unlucky. The bottom line is he was 8-18, 10-11, 12-9, and 10-12 with a career era at almost 4.50. Not sure where you think or what you think a good year is?

    I do not want those guys at that price either. We just need someone in the outfield that has power. The way we pieced it together for the last month of season was hard to watch.

  • In reply to WaitTilNextYear:

    2008: 14-11 4.42 era
    2009: 13-9 3.62 era
    2010: 10-12 4.47 era
    2011: 12-9 3.79 era
    2012: 10-11 4.03 era
    Total: 59- 52 4.06 era

    All of them good years, his numbers in that span pretty much match those of Matt Garza with a slightly higher total era...

    2008: 11-9 3.70
    2009: 8-12 3.95
    2010: 15-10 3.91
    2011: 10-10 3.32
    2012: 5-7 3.91
    Total: 49-48 3.74 era

    Those are good years.

  • In reply to Caps:

    I am not comparing him to Matt Garza. I never mentioned him. But since you did, I would take Garza over Edwin. It is kinda odd you left off the 07 and 13 season. When he was 5-15 with a 5.76 era and 8-18 with a 4.98 era. 13-33 is a horrible stretch. I guess you haven't set your standards very high if you consider 59-52 with a 4.06 era as good. My definition of good is different. "Good" should never lose 18 games. And in 7 years he has been on 7 teams.

  • I have said this for awhile. Wellington had a nice year and I would be ok with him being our starting catcher, but if the cubs are looking to sign a catcher I believe mccan is the way to go. The more that I read on him he sounds like a perfect fit for what the cubs need. I hope we make a solid push for him.

    For all you guys that want price, why? If you look at his stats he isn't very consistent. One year .500 then a good year, then back to .500. I don't want to trade a lot for him. He isn't worth it.

  • In reply to WaitTilNextYear:

    It's not fair to judge a pitcher solely on wins. Look at his other stats.

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    In reply to Yemi:

    I agree with that and have used this example before. In '98 the Cubs had two pitchers with nearly identical stats. Mark Clark had a 4.84 ERA and Kevin Tapani's was 4.85. All other numbers were almost identical or favored Clark slightly, yet Clark's record was 9-14 while Tapani enjoyed a 19-9 mark. Sometimes it's not how you pitch but when you pitch.

  • In reply to Yemi:

    I did look at his other stats. His era is solid, innings pitched is solid and strike outs to walk ratio is good. I know you can't judge a pitcher on wins and losses, that can't control that. Just seems odd that he would be .500, then great, then .500, then great, and back to .500. I just don't want to give up too much for him.

  • I like Castillo, but if him and Shark can be a package for Price (and we get Salt), I would be happy with that. Don't know if the Rays would want Shark, though, since he will be a cost. But hey, if that can work.....

  • In reply to JollyCharlieGrimm:

    I think I'd rather have Navarro, though, as the primary catcher.

  • In reply to JollyCharlieGrimm:

    Navarro had, in my opinion, a career year last year. No way he hits like that in 2014. Except for last year and 2008, he has been replacement level his whole career. If some GM wants to pay Navarro the $$ to be a starting catcher, I say let 'em.

  • In reply to JollyCharlieGrimm:

    Shark/Castillo wouldn't even be close to what the Rays would want.

    Shark wants to get paid and the Tampa Rays aren't going to be the team to pay him. He would essentially be a 2 year rental.

    The Rays are going to want top prospects. It pains Cubs fans to read that but it's the truth.

    Shark/Castillo isn't the best offer the the Rays are going to get for David Price.

  • In reply to Yemi:

    I know the Rays are going to want multiple top prospects. It doesn't pain me as a Cub fan. I just tell them no thank you.

  • John, would you want the Cubs to deal for Price? Pardon the pun, but I just think the 'price' would be wrong.

    Friedman has shown a propensity for getting well above and beyond what the starter he's dealing is worth, with the latest example being Myers for Shields.

    On top of that, he's not the same pitcher as he was in previous years using much more off speed stuff.

  • That's exactly what I'm afraid and some of the reasons why I think such a trade is unlikely. I think it's fun to talk about getting a pitcher like Price but the reality is that the Price would indeed be wrong and that you're getting a guy with diminished velocity. It's a bigger risk than appears on the surface. The Cubs have shown they can scout pitching pretty well and get good starters for a lot less.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Agreed , the Rays are going to ask for a king's ransom. The Rays should be asking for the Moon, and they will get it , just not from the Cubs. The Rays will be looking for pitchers and the Cubs system's strength is not pitching

  • Deacon you make some good points here. The market for Price will be enormous and , much like the FA mkt and Boras, it only takes one team to be desperate enough...

    Assuming that Baez, Almora , and Bryant are likely off-limits, what would a viable package look like? I think it's difficult to imagine a scenario where we could pull it off without including one of those three. I've made mention of de-risking by parlaying some of our farm talent for young,estabilished ML talent. I don't know if that would apply to taking one of our A hitting prospects and moving them for an elite P but one who has seen some velocity decline and hints of injury issues.

    If we're going to move prospects for estabilished talent , I'd much prefer to do it for a bat.

  • rays would want at least 2 of the big 4 plus probably welly , P Johnson . If there is anyone who thinks Price coming off arm Issues and consistent drop in velocity is worth that then I am glad they are not Theo .

  • Gee, I wonder if Joe G. reads Cubs Den, he really should so he can check the "pulse" of the Chicago area on his possible move. I'm sure he has a solid take on that, but might see that there are some that would sure like him to come back so to speak, but if he dosen't it's not the end of the world as there are a couple of pretty nice options out there IMO. I know it surely wouldn't enter into his thought process one way or another, but maybe it should, the Cubs Den as we all know is THE heartbeat of the Cubs. Better log in Joe!!

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    I just want to point out that there usually aren't desperate buyers and sellers in the trade market. Instead, what people misconstrue as desperation is more akin to leveraging situations (expiring contracts, impending free agency, contract negotiating windows, tender rights, etc.)

    Player valuation is almost a precise practice now. Injury and personal background histories are as readily available as a Car Fax. A team who is one or two players away from a shot at the World Series is not a desperate team, in fact, they are the opposite. A team that may lose a player to free agency is not a desperate team either. They've weighed the costs vs. the opportunities when it comes to deciding whether to keep or ship that player.

    A player on the trading block commands a market. As with anything, there are teams that will over bid, under bid and valuation bid for those players. This isn't the 1960's and a win now mentality may cause a team to over bid, but it certainly does not make them a desperate team, and in fact, what we think is an overbid, since we are all obviously experts, is probably just a valuation bid from a GM whose valuations skew contrary to the norm. It happens in all walks of life.

    Maybe you think that is nitpicky, but a desperate team doesn't say "Here, take David Price, give me anything, I don't care, I just don't want to walk away with nothing." In terms of compensation, teams factor in what the payoff was (or is) in letting his contract expire worthless (free agency). It is like buying and trading options and that is called "cost to carry."

    And while the cost to acquire an asset costs less and less as it gets closer to expiring as a worthless asset, the return value also shrinks correspondingly. Matt Garza is a perfect example. The Cubs took a bunch of prospects, none of whom are guarantees, with high ceilings and low floors. Each of those players (Olt, Edwards, Grimm) are not without faults, certainly. Contrarily, Texas probably got about 9 starts from Garza and he will most likely walk without compensation. For Texas the return on Garza was clinching a playoff birth. For the Cubs the return was the high ceilings of Edwards and Olt.

    More, the trade to get Garza was similar. The Cubs were at a point where they were convinced Garza was all they needed to get them over the hump. But the payout was larger because the cost to carry was much less and the asset had a much longer shelf life. There was no desperation in any of these moves, and options that carry some value are always eligible to be used to acquire new assets/options (trading short term assets for long term assets).

    I only state this because a lot of you think that "desperation" equates to an implosion or explosion in valuation (depending upon which side of the trade you are on) and that is simply not the case. Players are no longer "meat" -- they are financial assets, and multi-year, nine-figure contracts dictate that it is not hamburger you are trading or signing, it is a mini-corporation. Indeed many player contracts have greater value than 95% of the businesses in this country.

    Off to Nashville, see you all in about 8 days. Have fun with it.

  • I don't think that its good to forse things with over pay in money or in trading prospects. If an agenda doesn't come easy than go another direction. It looks like the the front office is more willing to trade a couple established big leaguers than they are their top prospects. In another year they will a better read on the young guys and who fits into the team's future. Giradi, Tanaka, and CarGo would be quite a haul this year.

  • Heart beating in agreement, I would like Joe but believe Alomar Jr. would work quite well here,especially if he can bring good coaches with him.Would like McKay and Bosio also stay, but Bosio likely wouldn't be retained anyway.
    I'm wondering if Theo would tie the hands of a new mgr. not named Joe? We certainly need a new manager in place with his guys. Please come home Joe as you're the best fit IMO.

  • I really doubt that the Cubs intend to move Beef. I think they want to platoon him again with another quality catcher.

  • In reply to baseballet:

    Over his career Welly has an .838 OPS in 160 PA against LHP and a .718 OPS in 492 PA against RHP.

    But in 2013 it was the opposite:

    .758 OPS vs. RHP in 327 PA and .707 OPS vs. LHP in 101 PA.

    Could just be a sample size issue but I thought that was interesting. I'd rather see him be the everyday catcher and get experience against both righties and lefties.

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