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2B or not 2B? Cubs developing a welcome "problem" as Javy Baez starts at the keystone today

2B or not 2B? Cubs developing a welcome "problem" as Javy Baez starts at the keystone today

Back when I was a kid, in the days before Ryne Sandberg, the Cubs often struggled deciding who their 2B would be: Mike Tyson, Joe Strain, Ted Sizemore, Davey Rosello, Tom Veryzer...

They've got the same issue now, only this time it's a matter of having an embarrassment of riches rather than just plain embarrassment.

The Cubs have incumbent Darwin Barney, who at least provides stellar defense, but it's not going to be enough to stave off the competition for much longer.  Emilio Bonifacio has added a new dimension this spring, Arismendy Alcantara's bat finally woke up yesterday and showed that he can be a dynamic offensive weapon in time.

Today, top prospect Javier Baez gets the call at 2B.  While Baez is just getting his first look this spring and will return to Iowa as the team's starting SS, this isn't his first go-round at 2B.  In fact, that he initially preferred he position over SS in high school.

It certainly didn't take Arismendy Alcantara long to adapt and make the switch after Baez displaced him at Tennessee last year.  It should be equally smooth for Baez now that he is the one being shifted due to the presence of starter Starlin Castro. The Cubs budding young star isn't worried about the transition,

"It's pretty much the same thing," he said.

Whatever gets him to the big leagues faster.

Right now, however, Barney is the starter until Baez is ready to take over the position full-time.   But it may not be long until we start to see some movement around the keystone.  Barney has been getting work at 2B, in part to help decide who fills the short term backup SS role and perhaps in part to prepare him for a change of roles -- or a change in uniform.  The Detroit Tigers have lost their own slick fielding SS in Jose Iglesias, possibly for the whole season.  While reports have them looking at Seattle's Nick Franklin, there is a question as to whether they have the depth to make a deal for a more talented, cost-controlled player.  The Tigers showed some interest in Barney in the past before acquiring Omar Infante.  Might they re-engage the Cubs again?  With Ian Kinsler at 2B, the Tigers would have to be convinced Barney could play SS full-time, something he hasn't done since he was at AAA Iowa in 2010.

As for Alcantara, he'll man 2B at Iowa and will probably be in a holding pattern to see how things develop with Castro and Baez over the course of the season.  He certainly has the athleticism to move to another position if necessary.  Or perhaps it'll be Baez who moves yet again...

"Then our shortstop went away, so I moved to short, and I didn't really like it, so I started playing center field, and then I came back to short," Baez said Sunday. "I used to like playing center field. I would do diving catches and stuff like that."

But then there's the problem of Albert Almora looking like a pretty solid bet to be the Cubs long term CF.

Nice "problems" to have for a change.

Other Notes:

  • Brett Jackson looks to be making a late run for the 5th outfielder spot as he appears to be getting his stroke back.  He starts in LF today.
  • Another player making a late push is Chris Rusin.  After a slow start to the spring, Rusin has gotten into a rhythm and may have taken the lead for the 5th spot if Jake Arrieta isn't ready to start the season, which seems rather likely at this point.  Arrieta has made progress but with 2 weeks left in the spring, it's doubtful he'll be ready to take on enough innings early in the season.
  • Barney gets another start at SS, is it a showcase?
  • Mike Olt continues his bid to make the team.  CSN's Patrick Mooney wrote on the possibility today.  Olt has yet to play 3B, however, and is not in either starting lineup today.
  • Kyle Hendricks was optioned to Iowa as expected.
  • Jen-Ho Tseng is a player we've talked about here often of late and now he's making the rounds nationally.  Both Jason Parks of Baseball Prospectus and Ben Badler of Baseball America had good things to say about the Cubs IFA signing.  We ranked him at an admittedly conservative 31 on our top 35 list but Tseng has a chance to shoot up that list this year.  Here's what I said about him on our own list a few weeks back,

"Tseng is a sleeper in the Cubs huge IFA haul from last season and some scouts I talked to might think I have him a little low here.  Several teams quietly pursued Tseng but the Cubs put in the biggest bid at $1.625M. Unlike many 19 year olds, Tseng is already physically mature.  That is a double-edged sword because it limits his projection, but Tseng can already reach 95 mph, so that abates much of the concern.  He is also considered to be mentally mature, showing impressive poise for his age and there is some polish to his game already.  Along with the good fastball, Tseng also throws a good curve and an average slider.  One scout who has seen him often likes his change-up and thinks it's a potential plus pitch for him.  The command is still developing but it shows promise and it will be the key to his progress in 2014. Like many pitchers from the Pacific Rim, his delivery has a slight hesitation that can disrupt a hitters timing, especially so since Tseng has the live arm to make it work, exploding on the hitter from that hesitation with quick arm action.  Despite the unorthodox delivery, Tseng maintains good balance, keeps his head still, and maintains a good line toward home plate. Tseng profiles as a mid-rotation starter though at least one scout I spoke to thinks he can be more than that.  While we keep an eye on some of the big name prospects and IFA signings, Tseng is a prospect to watch this season.  He could be the steal of the 2013 IFA signing period."

 Today's Lineups:

Vs. Angels

  1. Bonifacio SS
  2. Roberts 2B
  3. Rizzo 1B
  4. Ruggiano CF
  5. Schierholtz RF
  6. Castillo C
  7. Sweeney DH
  8. McDonald LF
  9. Valbuena 3B

SP: Edwin Jackson SP

Vs. A's

  1. Lake CF
  2. Barney SS
  3. Kalish RF
  4. Valaika 1B
  5. Baez 2B
  6. Villanueva 3B
  7. Vitters DH
  8. Jackson LF
  9. Whiteside C

James McDonald SP

 

 

 

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  • I hate that Kyle Hendricks wasn't really given a shot at the No. 5 job. He's 24, has 350 minor league innings under his belt and had a fine camp. They need to give at least one guy a shot at proving himself in the Majors.

  • In reply to Jimmy Greenfield:

    He did get an opportunity to showcase himself and pitched a lot early in the spring. The fact he's not on the 40 man roster and has less than a 1/2 season at Iowa works against him for now, but I'll be surprised if he isn't up by mid-season.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I'm just so sick of handing the baseball over to the Chris Rusin's of the world.

  • In reply to Jimmy Greenfield:

    If Hendricks can get more instruction and time to work on things that makes him better in the long-run, I am fine with it. I would hope to see him midyear but have no real issue in waiting a little longer.

    as for the 40 man roster, we should be seeing things moving soon. If I remember correctly, Bonafacio is not on and I don't see any way he does not make the team. If Barney is not traded we are probably seeing the end of the Vitters Era.

  • In reply to DoubleM:

    Fujikawa will go on the 60 day DL to free up the spot for Bonifacio

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    In reply to DoubleM:

    I'd rather drop Watkins than Vitters but agree-bonafacio should make the team.

  • In reply to Dale Miller:

    To me there are 5 guys with pretty soft hold on roster spots with little to no current or future place with the team: MacDonald, Cabrera, Fujikawa, Murphy, Watkins. A couple of them might be able to contribute a little this year, but they aren't critical guys so losing any of them for little or no return is no big deal. There is really no reason we need to make a decision on Vitters or Jackson this season. Especially considering after the deadline we will open up even more spots from whichever of the pending FAs/potential chips we trade out of Hammel, Veras, Villanueva, Schierholtz, Barney, Valbuena, Ruggiano, etc.

    The roster crunch from our young depth will be coming soon, but we aren't there yet. There is still plenty of wiggle room in the 40 man.

  • In reply to Dale Miller:

    Watkins has really fallen off the radar.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    You can't blame them-you have to prioritize the power. Everyone that wants to dump Bjax and Vitters doesn't realize the value of even 15 hr power.

  • In reply to Dale Miller:

    They're not good enough to get enough major league at bats in order to get double digit home runs.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to John Arguello:

    I do think Watkins deserved more of a shot last year...

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Dale Miller:

    We know what we have out of Watkins.
    Even through the disappointment, at least Vitters still has a little more projection.
    I'd absolutely drop Watkins in favor of Vitters.

  • In reply to Jimmy Greenfield:

    True, but you need your Chris Rusins too. You need those guys who can fill in and at least help you transition during injuries or until your sure your guys are ready. And Rusin put up some decent numbers himself in the minors -- I think he's going to be in the bigs for awhile, the kind of guy who can fill a role here and there, though he may end up travelling a bit.

    I don't know if Hendricks did enough to win a spot anyway. Had some command issues early on and he is still working on getting LH hitters out better. A little bit of time at AAA should help his development, but I don't think it'll take long.

  • In reply to Jimmy Greenfield:

    I see another Jamie Moyer in Rusin.

  • In reply to Jimmy Greenfield:

    I see another Jamie Moyer in Rusin. Great future.

  • In reply to Jimmy Greenfield:

    I think it has alot to do with Hendricks not having a roster spot yet. If he goes down & does well, he will be up if a need arises.

    I'm disappointed that everytime I see the Cubs, Chris Valaika seems to be up to bat!!

  • In reply to Jimmy Greenfield:

    He's got 6 AAA starts in his lifetime.... It's not like he's being shunned.

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    In reply to Jimmy Greenfield:

    As a finesse guy, he's looked great against other kids. But more patient MLB hitter will eat him alive on the days he doesn't have his command because he doesn't have the "stuff" to over come it.

    Greg Maddux, who was a much more highly regarded prospect than Hendricks, struggled mightily in his first two seasons, posting ERA's over 5.60+, so it's safe to say that Kyle could benefit from more time at AAA, considering he's only had six starts there so far in his career.

  • In reply to Mike Partipilo:

    Moyer and Maddux had great careers, struggled when young. Faith
    and support and Billy Connors went a long way...

  • I've seen a ton of Baez @ SS & 2B. His CF experience was in a couple of tournaments, so it was limited. He played 2B early in his HS career. He can play anywhere. Literally, I called one game that he caught and I thought he was an excellent catcher.

    So far as Barney to the Tigers, I have to believe that's probably what's best for everyone, including Barney. I think he can play SS for them and they have the offense to carry him. It doesn't make sense for them to overpay for a younger cost controlled guy or pay the price/draft pick for a guy like Drew.... Bonafacio/Valbuena/Murphy can keep 2B warm until Baez is ready. I don't expect we'll get much, but anything at this point is probably a good deal for us.

    Because Rusin can be optioned to Iowa, I think McDonald will edge him out "if" one of them makes the 25 man roster. They may opt to go with Villanueva for the 1-2 starts Arrieta may miss since neither McDonald or Rusin have been lights out.

  • I thought his last outing was pretty impressive, but I also think he probably needs up to a full year at AAA where he'll be a phone call away. Paradoxically, it was the one walk he gave up that impressed me the most. He put every one of those four balls exactly where he wanted them--the exact same spot on the outside corner. I had the sense that he was challenging the umpire to call them strikes, a la Tom Glavine. They were strikes, but I also had the sense that the ump wasn't going to give-in to a minor league pitcher. I think when he establishes himself as a veteran he'll get those calls. No one will ever call his stuff "electric," but he has very impressive control and commands of all his pitches.

  • In reply to TheThinBlueLine:

    Great point on Glavine..

  • fb_avatar

    I'm not quite sure what to make of Mike Olt. He has the outstanding game a few days ago, then follows it up with games, so far as I can tell from the Interweb, where weak contact is the rule. If he doesn't take the job and run with it, I could see them moving Javy to third and Alcantara to second to get both bats in the lineup.

    And then deal with the Christian Villanueva issue next spring.

    I do so love that we can have this conversation for a change. Instead of, "Well, David Kelton needs to hit next year. Or we're screwed."

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Mike Moody:

    There is no player I'm rooting harder for this spring than Olt. What a gift it would be if he turned out to be the answer at third base. But I just don't see it. I think his strikeout rate is a real red flag.

    Maybe I've learned that as a Cubs fan, if it seems too good to be true, then it is too good to be true. Kind of like when Brett Jackson overhauled his swing and there were so many positive vibes about it. Well, not so much.

  • fb_avatar

    Although the young talent hasn't proven themselves at he major league yet. It's still nice to see that they don't have enough positions available for all the talent they have in waiting.

  • In reply to Michael Klein:

    That's what you hope for -- eventually these things sort themselves out one way or another.

  • With Detroit losing Iglesias, are there any chances they make a play for Castro (and would the Cubs listen)? Personally, I'm not optimistic about him — his OBP has declined every year, and the fielding hasn't really skyrocketed. I tend to think the Cubs won't trade him, but if the offer is right...

  • In reply to Joe Shmoe:

    No on Castro and they don't have enough to get him anyway. Maybe Barney.

  • fb_avatar

    As much as I've dismissed the lineup balance "issue", it starts to become pretty real if Olt and Baez entrench themselves as starters at 3B and 2B, respectively. That would be an amazingly talented, young infield, with all kinds of upside, but would almost require two LH hitting outfielders.

  • In reply to Matt McNear:

    But the outfield has 3 of the Big 4 projected to go there and they are all RH too. An outfield of Soler, Almora and Bryant would be amazingly talented too. We will just have to wait and see how things play out. Either we will be doing some trading or we will have some very talented players on the bench.

  • In reply to Matt McNear:

    Again - I don't really see the problem with a bunch of quality, young, RH hitters,.... you can always trade for LH ones from the surplus,.... or find a few via FA.

    It's (again) a nice problem to have. For a change.

  • Perhaps I've missed it, but I haven't heard much about Castillo this spring. Any reports on how he is doing?

  • In reply to Roscoe Village:

    Doing well -- it's probably telling that we're beginning to take him for granted. Hopefully that's a position we can forget about for awhile.

  • Where is Tseng projected to start the season?

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to DropThePuck:

    Dr. Andrews's office. The same place all Cubs pitching prospects who turn scouting heads are projected to start.

  • In reply to DropThePuck:

    probably extended ST and then Boise/Kane County.

  • In reply to DropThePuck:

    I think he can start at Boise, but we'll see.

  • In reply to DropThePuck:

    He's starting to get a lot of momentum. He was once thought of as one of as one of the top prospects in this class, but his velocity, command, and results all dipped last year and so his star lost some of it's luster. But it appears to shooting back up.

    Mark Anderson of Baseball Prospectus was just quoted as saying that Tseng could handle full-season ball already, which means he could start out in Kane County’s rotation.

    Also in a discussing with Shadeev Sharma, Jason Parks Parks said that he also thinks Tseng looks like a full-season arm at this point and would now rank Tseng in the Cubs’ top ten prospects...

    Regardless of where he starts, it looks like his velocity and command/control is back and he is poised to move quickly through the lower levels this year.

    Here's a scouting report from Ben Badler w/video: http://www.baseballamerica.com/minors/cubs-diligence-pays-off-on-jen-ho-tseng/

  • John, I think my post is lost in cyberspace somewhere... can you check the queue? Thanks!

    So far as why I think we stick with McDonald over Rusin, at least for now, there's the obvious things like Rusin has options, McDonald is already on a MLB contract, etc.. but McDonald has always had good stuff, until his shoulder issues. Supposedly, our Scouts saw a lot of him over the winter and that's why they went out and signed him after learning of Arrieta's shoulder issue. So I think they're more concerned with his health and velocity, etc vs actual results right now. Plus, if he turns things around, the Cubs would have him for another year of arbitration after this year and he could provide us with another flip candidate at the deadline...

    The question is what to do with McDonald when Arrieta is healthy?... We've already got Villanueva as a swing man...

  • Dang! Was really hoping to see Hendricks make the roster.

  • In reply to lokeey:

    It may not be long.

  • Back then, the problem with 2B was Mike Tyson, this guy ended up going to jail, coming back and chewing on people's ears and now he's into pigeon racing... Don't think his makeup would've been as good as Ryno's.

    OK... I just couldn't resist lol.

  • In reply to Caps:

    Haha!

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Caps:

    That's ludicrisp. lol

  • BTW... Mike Olt was scratched and won't be playing today due to minor shoulder fatigue.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Caps:

    It seems like a lot of "minor" stuff turns out to be anything but. Let's hope that is not the case here.

  • In reply to Caps:

    I'm hoping this is just precautionary. He was reportedly taking grounders at 3B yesterday in practice...

  • fb_avatar

    John, let me throw this scenerio out there regarding Detroit. Baez continues to improve and impress and we are a day or two from opening day, Detroit still haven't acquired anyone yet, their discussion with the cubs about Barney suddenly shifted to Castro, who do the tigers have that could make the Cubs reconsider?

  • In reply to Cubsforlife:

    I really don't see a good fit. Don't see a need to trade Castro anyway, but especially if they can't really give anyone of equal value back in return.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to John Arguello:

    A question for you, John. It doesn't seem likely that the Cubs will trade Castro now, given that his trade value is down and they are hoping Renteria can communicate better with him than Sveum.

    They also don't seem likely to trade him if he gets off to a bad start this season, because then his trade value will be really low. But lets say letting Castro be Castro again sparks a resurgence, and in July he's putting up a slash line along the lines of .300/350/.480.

    I know that's optimistic. But my question is, do the Cubs trade him then or bet on the fact that the problem all along was that they were trying to make him something he wasn't?

    Castro definitely does not fit Theo's model of having a team of grinders. But while I do not like free swingers, even I have to admit that you don't necessarily need to have everybody in your lineup taking pitches two inches off the plate.

    What do you think?

  • In reply to Gregory Shriver:

    If Castro puts up the slash line you indicate, there is zero chance he gets traded. The Cubs are simply not in a position where they can trade good, young, cost controlled players. Those are the kind of guys they are trying to acquire. Trading Castro for a prospect is a zero sum scenario. At best, the prospect pans out, and you end up getting something of equal value to Castro himself.

  • In reply to mjvz:

    Who said they would trade him for a prospect? I would think Theo would go for a major league player that could help the team right away.

  • In reply to John57:

    whats the point of getting a player that could help now if castro is helping the team with the slash line gregory put up ?

  • In reply to seankl:

    We have a lot of great IF players/prospects. What if we trade him for a LH hitting OF or LH SP, something we are short of. Wouldn't that be a good thing? Trading from a surplus to get something we are short on. That seems like something the FO would do.

  • In reply to John57:

    I guess a trade for a left handed hitting OF is a possibility, but the only LHP you get for him would be either a prospect or an expensive (or soon to be expensive) veteran. Teams just do not trade young, proven starting pitching (especially left handers). See below.

  • In reply to John57:

    That depth your talking about are all question marks. we dont know what the prospect will become. You still need depth in this league because players get injured, as a FO you have to factor that in.

  • In reply to John57:

    I assume you are suggesting trading Castro for a young MLB starter under cost control. Essentially a Castro equivalent, just a pitcher instead. Unfortunately, those type of trades rarely happen. Teams generally don't give up those type of pitchers under any circumstance, even for a young shortstop. Young, proven pitching is what every team is looking to acquire, not give up. It is the most valuable commodity in the game.

  • In reply to mjvz:

    No it doesn't have to be a young cost controlled pitcher. I think Theo would be willing to pay a lot if the pitcher was good. He is willing to pay what they are worth. He went after Tanaka and Edwin Jackson. They were not inexpensive. But it doesn't absolutely have to be a major league player. Maybe a recovering top prospect like Bundy or Giolito. My point is you can trade from a surplus. We have quite a surplus of 3B and SS players/prospects.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to mjvz:

    You are probably right. But the same could be said for what the Cubs are trying to get for Samardzija. Even if he goes 13-2 with a 1.90 ERA in the first half, I don't seeing anybody giving up a couple top-flight pitching prospects. Perhaps two guys along the lines of C.J. Edwards, but not much better than that.

  • In reply to Gregory Shriver:

    If he he hits with a .350 and slugs .480, from the SS position, I'm not going to care if he grinds out ABs, he's going to be one of the more offensively productive SS's in the game. I'd keep him unless somebody offers the moon.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to John Arguello:

    I guess what I was going for is that he has a hot start but maybe the Cubs don't believe he can sustain it. But I essentially agree you probably don't give up on a shortstop if you think he can put up an .800-plus OPS.

    I also like Castro's improvement defensively at short. However, if it looked like, in a year, Baez and Alcantrara were going to be able to handle short and second, perhaps Castro (and maybe another piece or two) could be dangled for some pitching.

  • In reply to Cubsforlife:

    Doug Fister.

    Oops. Too late.

  • What's the ETA on Castro? I'm beginning to worry he opens the season on the DL. It would also be terrible news for his value if he has Jose Reyes hamstrings.

  • In reply to Eddie:

    Carrie Muskat ‏@CarrieMuskat
    #Cubs Starlin Castro says he's running at 80 percent and has plenty of time to get ready for season

  • does anybody know what the chances are of Pimentel making the team? and do they project him as a starter or reliever in the future?

  • In reply to cjordanh54:

    I think they're pretty low. He hasn't given up a run but he's also had trouble throwing strikes. I think he's a middle reliever if he makes it.

  • In reply to cjordanh54:

    I was impressed with him the other day. I could see him being a quality middle reliever/long man down the road. Maybe a Carlos Villanueva type resource. I don't think there is any chance he makes the opening day roster, but I could certainly see him being in the mix post-deadline when they deal a couple of pitchers and potenitally open up some roster spots.

  • Excellent read

    http://grantland.com/features/chicago-cubs-boston-red-sox-theo-epstein/

  • In reply to Jimmie Ward:

    That sums up everything pretty well. Thanks for the link.

  • In reply to Jimmie Ward:

    Agreed. A lot of it has already been hashed out here at Cubs Den, but nice to see it on Grantland, too.

  • In reply to Jimmie Ward:

    An excellent read for the uninformed, but regular Cubs Den readers could have written this article.

  • In reply to Jimmie Ward:

    Excellent reed indeed! Thanks for sharing.

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    *read not reed...

  • In reply to Jimmie Ward:

    I found myself agreeing with everything, especially Shark/Wood/Jackson not scaring anyone as a 1-3, but that's a dangerous 3-5.

    Easier said then done to get 1-2 though, but I like the fact he doesn't harp on potential about Shark, he's taking him at face value, exactly what he is right now, a #3 disgusted as an ace on a bad baseball team. Adjust expectations accordingly but he's going to have to prove it. Everything can't be "well if Player X reaches his potential..."

    I love the Arrieta comparison, could be a better Feldman, again taking what he is/could be at face value, my eyes hurt from rolling them after seeing TOR this and TOR that about him. Is it too much to ask from him to put together 1 full DECENT major league season before any TOR label gets thrown on him?

    Spot on article.

  • In reply to Jimmie Ward:

    Disguised*

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Jimmie Ward:

    Ugh! Go figure, it's a blocked site from work. I'll have to wait til I get home. (Thankfully IT hasn't blocked CubsDen - yet???)

  • fb_avatar

    Great read, thanks! A little depressing that the road is much harder now, but it is what it is.

    An excellent point on "Grow pitching, buy hitting", and reversing that....which I agree with. The spate of TJS this spring is all the evidence you need that pitching is fragile, hitting more consistent.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Oakland just lost their Ace to TJS and scratched Kazmir from making a start today due to tricep stiffness... They've already lost griffin til May.

    I gotta think Epstoyer's going to get their asking price for Shark if they decide not to re-sign him... Maybe not today or tomorrow even... but the way contenders like Oakland & Atlanta have seen their rotations falling apart... someone will pay Theo's price.

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Archie Bradley please.

  • In reply to notcarlosdanger:

    If you had Bradley, would you trade him?....

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Desperate teams in win-now mode sometimes do desperate (even "stupid" from a long-term perspective) things. You never know what might fall the Cubs way if they wait. Maybe nothing. Maybe a really good piece for a franchise that's rebuilding. "In Theo I trust." Or something like that.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    It does change the supply/demand equation a bit, doesn't it. On the other hand, working against, is...Samardzija's pitching.

  • McDonald just injured himself & left the game on his 2nd pitch.... Chris Wong in to replace him.

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    wish him all the best, but based on what he has shown in ST so far, i am not overly devastated if he's out of the race for the last rotation spot

    in Mesa, Jackson looking good so far. our offence has not shown up yet

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    I hope he's okay. I'd hate for something to have gone Wong.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Mike Partipilo:

    YES.

  • Listening to the Oakland announcers and after that catch in CF by Junior Lake, they're describing him as the next Willie Mays.... Wish I could've seen it.

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    They've been talking him up a lot this game.

  • With the way Beeler's been throwing this spring and in the AFL last fall, he, Hendricks and Rusin should all be in the discussion for first up from AAA when the need arises. Of those 3, Hendricks is the only one not on the 40-man. That competition should be fun to watch in Iowa this year.

  • In reply to Quedub:

    And as I write that, Beeler gives up 2 earned. Still, though...

  • I know its spring training but the k's for baez are piling up. I hope he doesn't bring this to the majors.

  • In reply to seankl:

    He will. He'll never be a high contact guy. But that is okay. He does enough damage when he makes contact to make up for it.

  • Another point on Castro to the Tigers not making any sense: they aren't looking for a long term solution. They have that in Iglesias, they just need a cheap capable glove to fill in for one season while he rehabs, enter Darwin Barney. It makes no sense for them to have Kinsler, Iglesias, and Castro next season all locked up long term. And they have nothing comparable to offer anyways.

  • In reply to nmu’catsbball:

    Good point.

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