GM Jed Hoyer: "It's Time for Mendy to Play"

GM Jed Hoyer: "It's Time for Mendy to Play"

CSN's Patrick Mooney just sent out this tweet,

GM Jed Hoyer: "It's Time for Mendy to Play"

Which in turn had Twitter Cubs fans reacting like this (h/t Adam Brown)


It certainly is good news and maybe a surprise in that it seems that recent indication had been the opposite -- that is, that Arismendy Alcantara would be sent down to the minor leagues when the Cubs were ready to call up a pitcher.

Alcantara becomes the first of the Cubs elite prospects to get his full-time shot in the majors and, frankly, it gives us a player we can watch along with Jake Arrieta, Starlin Castro and Anthony Rizzo as this team transitions to the next phase of rebuilding.

And if the Cubs people say he is ready to play everyday in the big leagues, then who are we to argue?

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  • Very exciting. Makes me wonder if a September call up for Baez or Bryant will indeed happen. Alcantara forced their hand with his play this year.

  • In reply to Ike03:

    I'm not sure about those two. It is possible to make it work with Baez but doesn't mean it can or will actually happen.

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    In reply to Ike03:

    I don't know, Ike. As much as the fan in me would like to see them as well, I don't know if it's the best thing for the club. Neither are currently on the 40 man and putting them on it now, before they need to be, means there's one or two less players like Beeler, Jokisch or Edwards that won't be protected from the Rule V draft this winter. Those roster spaces are valuable

  • So Lake or Olt going down?

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    In reply to brunsmk:

    Not yet...Barney DFA'd

  • In reply to cking6178:

    Need a move for tomorrow though, that's what I was referring to.

  • In reply to brunsmk:

    I'm curious what everyone thinks about DFA'ing Schierholtz?

    We couldn't get anything significant last year when he was having a career year and was cost controlled for another year. Now that he's going to be a FA, he's been outplayed by everyone in the OF not named Junior. With BonaBABIPio and AA now, we have the roster flexibility to ride through August with just Ruggiano, Coghlan, and Lake...

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    and sweeny.. suddenly LHH OF'rs are a redundancy.

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    I would DFA both of these guys in a heartbeat. Clear out the deadweight.

  • In reply to Behn Wilson:

    Sweeney will probably stay, just because they are going to need a body out in the OF the rest of the season, and he at least plays good defense. And he is signed through next year.

  • In reply to mjvz:

    Don't need any .200 hitters on the roster. Time to clean house. These guys add nothing to this team. Having Sweeney in the lineup is like having Barney playing CF, an automatic out. time to clean the mediocrity off of this roster. Hasta la Vista baby!

  • In reply to mjvz:

    Behn, don't get me wrong, I want him gone. I'm just trying to be realistic. They have to field a team and Szczur, Vitters, Jackson are all just as bad or worse. Plus, they owe him a couple of million next year, so they are almost assuredly going to let him regroup over the winter and at least give him a chance in the spring to show if he still has anything.

  • In reply to mjvz:

    I see what you are saying about bodies but we have Coghlan & Ruggiano who can actually hit and are much better journeyman option than Schierholz & Sweeny. Alcantara, Bonaficio, Lake in the outfield too & valbuena could play there too if needed. I don't see any need to keep either Nate or Sweeny anymore.

  • In reply to mjvz:

    Next year is a team option year. He's dead weight and as good as gone.

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    In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Julio Borbon, we hardly knew ye

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Assuming the Cubs don't have a trade on the burner between now and tomorrows game (assuming one of the relievers) then DFAing Schierholtz is the move that makes the most sense to me, they would still have until the deadline to salvage something for him, unless they think he is guy they could still move in August after the deadline. If not Schierholtz, then I think Olt going down to Iowa to play 1b/DH for 10 days until they move a couple of Schierholtz/Villanueva/Russell/Strop and then they could bring him back up.

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    I'd have absolutely NO problem with it, Hoosier!!

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    As difficult as it is to comprehend, Junior Lake has actually outplayed Schierholtz this year.

    I figure Mendy takes Schierholtz spot, Fuji will replace Villanueva, Vailaka replaces Russell.

    When Strop and/or Fuji is dealt that could potentially open spots for Rivero and Baez (I can dream).

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    In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    I've read alot of posts on various sites about how much Barney, Olt, Lake, et al suck, but Schierholtz seems to get a free pass. But any way you slice it, OPS+, WAR, whatver, he is brutal, and the worst performer on the team. He absolutely stinks.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Schierholtz is just such a quiet, unassuming guy. He doesn't draw attention to the fact he sucks, where as Lake and Olt make themselves look like fools quite often, and Barney has sucked for a couple of years (while Schierholtz was at least decent last season).

  • In reply to Zonk:

    And don't forget Sweeny in that "elite" group too.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    In my mind, I thought Olt and Lake had such potential that it was disappointing to see them not live up to expectations. Scheirholtz didn't have their ceilings so not as disappointing.

  • In reply to brunsmk:

    Lake only has 1 option left, while Olt has 2 so it probably would make more sense to send Olt down over Lake. That way next spring they have the chance to option Lake to AAA if he's still struggling.

  • In reply to brunsmk:

    Unless they are going to trade a veteran outfielder send Lake down.
    Unless they are going to trade a veteran infielder send Olt down

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    In reply to emartinezjr:

    emart, pls read sweetswings post above ^^

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    Exciting news. If the cubs end up moving Russell how likely do you think it is they use that 40 man spot on Baez? I get the feeling he will see Chicago this year and not as a September call up.

  • In reply to Restless:

    They may be considering it with the recent work at 2B and all, but, I kind-of doubt it. Would be a lot of fun thats for sure.

  • In reply to Restless:

    Watching him at Iowa on MILBtv, I am not sure either Baez or (to a lesser extent) Bryant are ready.

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    In reply to springs:

    Hard to judge them going against one of the top pitching prospects in all of basball in Andrew Heaney

  • It looks like I will be using my subscription through the end of the year.

  • My Coooookkkiieeeeeee!

  • In reply to Bilbo161:


  • In reply to Bilbo161:

    Haha! We all get a cookie!

  • This is a pretty decent looking line-up against a pitcher & team that should a lot of runs.

    2B - BoniBABIPio (one of my favorite Felzzy'isms)
    Cf - A.A.
    1B - Rizzo
    SS- Castro
    RF- Ruggiano
    C -Castillo
    LF - lake
    3B - Olt
    P - Hendricks

    Stults could be just what Lake & Olt need to get back on track to relevance. Opposing hitter are batting .298 off of him this year....

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    It is a little interesting that AA is in center versus Bonifacio. Easily could have had those two switched.

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    In reply to brunsmk:

    Probabaly means they see AA as a center fielder next year. Probably means they feel Baez will be playing 2nd at some pt next year.

  • In reply to brunsmk:

    Probably more a sign of where they see AA playing next season rather than whom it is that is the better CF right now.

  • In reply to brunsmk:

    Several team are looking for 2nd base upgrades at the deadline. If the Cubs are going to trade someone it might be Bonifacio, and showing he's recovered from injury and able to play 2nd only makes sense to build his value.

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    That is not a decent looking lineup. The only thing that could make the results decent is that Stults is equally as bad.

  • In reply to mjvz:

    Well what I meant was Stults is terrible this year and that is the best looking line-up we have on the current roster vs a LHP... So we actually have the chance to score some runs. He could be just what the HIT DR ordered to get Beef, Lake, and Olt back on track.

  • Let the dinner begin!

  • Lord I wish Barney could hit just a little bit. I hope he finds his hitting coach equivalent of a Muse. With just a small improvement he could be very useful to someone.

  • In reply to Bilbo161:

    He's shown signs of putting it together and w/o looking at the stats, seems like he hit the ball right on the screws a lot more this year, unfortunately it was right at someone...

  • In reply to Bilbo161:

    Who wants to wager he ends up with the Cardinals?

  • I think it is starting to look like Bryant & Baez will be up in September and that is a good thing. Let them get their feet wet in September and they can start next season on the opening day roster and battle it out for rookie of the year. And bring Soler up to Triple A now, he is a man against boys at Double A.

  • In reply to Behn Wilson:

    Theo is already on record as saying there was no possibly scenario he could imagine that would warrant bringing Bryant up. Baez is a possibility (still not a guarantee) if he can maintain his hot streak as he's obviously made the adjustments.

    Soler is the most likely to be playing @ Wrigley in Sept.

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    Bryant's hitting in the minors has been flat out filthy. There is nothing more for him to prove down there. The service time would be the only reason. I am not a fan of holding a player back for contract reasons (or tanking for a pick), I sure would not like it if I was a player.

    I can not wait for September to see who they bring up. I am hoping to be pleasantly surprised. It would help the Cubs attendance also, a nice side benefit.

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    In reply to Behn Wilson:

    His strikeouts are up in AAA and his walks are down. Even setting aside the service time issue, which every team in the majors pays attention to, he still has things he can work on in the minors.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Yea, Bryant has come back down to earth a bit lately. We probably need to see him deal with this first.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    and defensively, he has some holes to tighten up too.

  • In reply to Behn Wilson:

    It has been filthy up until the last week or so. But even so, there are areas where he needs to improve and those adjustments should be made in AAA not in MLB.

    Service clock aside (which given where we are right now) is reason enough, he is still not a finished product.

  • Agreed with calling up Baez and Bryant in September and starting next season with both of them on the major league roster. They will have both earned those promotions and it makes sense for the team's development as well. I think it would be bad business to start those 2 in AAA next year. I understand the service time argument, but if it's time for the FO to try and put a winner on the field next year. Starting them with the big club would bring great positive energy and production to the team, and fan base, while leaving them behind for 2-3 weeks could put them behind the 8 ball moving forward. Sacrifice a year of player control 6 years from now and do what's best for next years team.

  • In reply to sabzali:

    I'll be 67 next year, a Cubs fan for 58 years, experienced a lot of losing, and there is no way I would sacrifice the additional year of control on two players with the ceilings of Bryant and Baez for a month of winning 6 or so more games in the beginning of next year. That would be a foolish mistake IMHO.

  • In reply to sabzali:

    A well run organization will not bring them up this year. Not a smart move. The Hendry led FO would do that move though. You will just have to be patient.

  • In reply to sabzali:

    Next years team means diddly squat as they are going to be a .500 win team. 6 years from now when they are battling in the NLCS that extra year of control will mean the world to the franchise. Observe some self control.

  • The old saying that the prospect will let you know when he is ready is true here. Alcantara' s tool package is gift from the baseball gods. I don't know what his Cub future will be, but a switch hitter with speed and power, who plays up the middle is pretty rare.

  • If by Aug 1 we could trade 2 or 3 veterans for lower level prospects
    then the 40-man roster should not be an issue.

  • In reply to emartinezjr:

    There is at least a half dozen guys on this roster that can be DFA'd & it would be no loss to the organization whatsoever. 2013 versions of Donnie Murphy, etc. who were DFA'd at this time last year. 40 man roster is no issue whatsoever.

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    In reply to Behn Wilson:

    It will be over the winter when minor leaguers like Beeler and Edwards will NEED to be protected from the Rule V draft

  • I have got to consider changing my login. Sounds like Soler will be the next most likely call up. It is hard not to be excited for that.

  • In reply to disappointed:

    I am same as you, I am on pins and needles lately checking the net continuosly after Alcantara's recent call up to see to see if / who anyone else will get called up next. I think Barney's release is a sign of bigger things to follow. I hope!!!!!

  • In reply to disappointed:

    Yea, I vote change it if that means anything. :)

    Much more fun to be fulfilled?

  • In September the Cubs play Brewers 6x, Pirates 6x, Blue Jay 3x, Reds3x, Dodgers 4x, and Cardinals 3x.
    I do not want Bryant or Baez a part of this major losing streak.

  • In reply to ucandoit:

    A starting rotation including Villanueva, Rusin, our recent callups, plus Travis Wood who has turned into Chris Volstad Could help our record / draft choice. We only have one legit starter right now in Arrieta. I say he has passed his inning squote for this year, lets shut him down. (joke)

  • In reply to ucandoit:


    That is one tough September schedule!

    Every one of those teams will be fighting for a playoff spot.

  • Perhaps there is a strategy of staggering the top tier prospects???....Mendy now, Baez in Sep, Bryant in May 2015, Soler in July 2015, Russell in may 2016, Almora in july 2016....limits the number of people on the "clock" any one year and the number of players needing extra attention from the hitting coach

  • In reply to NIKOMAN:

    I don't think that the "clock year" would be a big consideration as far as staggering them. they are likely to extend a couple of them with castro/Rizzo-like contracts anyway.

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    In reply to NIKOMAN:

    Somehow I doubt that the FO has a "timeline" down to a month next year (much less the year after that) for players to come up. There are too many variables. It may get talked about in a half-hearted way, but at this point the timelines are nowhere near that specific. Maybe Baez and Bryant "by next spring (May-ish)" is as specific as the plan will go.

  • Awesome.
    It's just as well that all the prospects don't come up at the same time.
    This way the coaching staff can give their full attention to each one.

  • So much for taking some time to rest. Thanks for all that you do John.

  • In reply to Johnny Cubfan:

    Ha! Thanks. Turns out the Cubs decision makers aren't cooperating with my planned day off.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    John, be sure to take some time for yourself. I'm still in a state of shock and disbelief over yesterday's news, and I only knew Felzz from his writing here. I can't imagine what his family and friends, such as yourself, must be going through.

    We always hear about players who are going through a rough time in their personal lives finding an escape by getting out on the field and playing. I guess it's something like that for you too, writing this blog. We appreciate what you do so much, but do take care of yourself too!

  • I would rather see Baez and Bryant a month earlier next year. As opposed to giving them a month this year, then having to wait an extra month next season due to service time.

    If Baez is willing to sign a long-term, friendly deal; then I am all for a September call-up. But it is not worth the impact on 2015 just to give them a taste this season.

  • My wife is in Canada and will be disappointed that Darwin Barney was DFA'd. I guess the old analogy of what it takes to make an omelet will have to suffice when I explain it to her...

    At any rate, this should be a direct message toward Schierholtz, Russell, Bonafacio, or Wright- without a contract after this season they are good as gone. Given the amount left on their contract, Russell and Wright should be the first ones dealt with Bonafacio not much further behind them.
    Rosscup, Parker, and Valaika can easily take their places. With the amount still owed Schierholtz, I believe there is zero chance any team would take the remainder of his contract, and it would not surprise me if he were DFA'd at the beginning of September with Soler taking his spot at that point.

  • I would tend to be somewhat cautious with bringing Soler up this year.

    Saw him play last night in Tennessee and he looked good on the hits (roping one of them to right center, while the other one was a bobble on an infield chopper that was close at first).

    It was great to see the Smokies in action, finally, and I came away with a new perspective on some of the players.

    Soler, a man among boys, was still taking it somewhat easy running (in warmups and during the game) only turning on the speed once when he had to beat out the infield hit. I also noticed that he was a little "nonchalant" in fielding warmups, bobbling a couple of catches (which I could easily contribute it to still being warmups). His arm however, is terrific, holding a runner at 2b on a play deep in RF. Too bad they took him out after the 6th. Would have loved to see him hit one more time.

    Overall he comes just as John has described him, and looks to be major league-ready soon. I just see the FO taking it slow with him, due to the hamstring issues, and not rushing him to Chicago this September.

    Addison Russell also comes as described by John and looks smooth playing SS and just has "that look" of a real major leaguer! I would, however, disagree with those who say, "he has a "solid" build which could get thick in the years ahead". I thought he looked typically-thin for a normal 19 year old, and had no extra weight at all on his frame. Even though he went 0-4 last night, the ball just sounded "loud" off his bat, and every ball he put in play was squared-up and very hard hit, but unfortunately, right at someone!

    Neat to see that he and Soler were the basically the first two guys out of the dugout for pre-game warmups! Added bonus that they were basically the only two Smokies players who made a point to come over and sign autographs for the fans! Made my day when I got both of their autographs on my game program!

    Won't bore you with my thoughts on the rest of the team, but would be happy to share observations if anyone is interested.

    Really cool to see some of the "future" of the Cubs in action!

  • In reply to DetroitCubFan:

    great post, thanks DCF!

  • Soler with a stand-up triple in the 2nd inning. And, yes, I held my breath when he rounded 2nd base and headed to 3rd.

  • Not sure if 100% ready to be a contributing everyday player? But since Barney can't hit it makes it easier to do so. I just wonder if he'll be in cf now. Instead of him and Baez at 2nd base.

    I still think olt and lake need to go to AAA and build some value for a trade.

  • Anyone have any thoughts from Sunday game on Rizzo's play? I have my thoughts but curious what people think about it in the baseball sense ?

  • In reply to WaitTilNextYear:

    As Len and JD pointed out, when you're running over there you don't think you're going to tumble out of play. I'm sure he'll make more plays like that as a 1B and I'm sure now he'll be much more gunshy about making the effort, which will probably anger people who will accuse him of being lazy.

  • In reply to jorel1114:

    If he was playing rf or LF ppl would be upset about it. Great hustle and effort but not a smart play. Gotta know the situation and what is going on. U start to fall over u let ball go. Runner on 1st no biggie but 3rd. 2nd thing it was dumb to risk a serious injury for that. Rizzo gets sermiouly hurt could never be the same

  • Olt needs to go down. It's not just that he's not hitting but I can't remember any Cub in recent history having a strikeout percentage like this.

    I think it would also be good for him to help get his confidence back.

  • On another, Hendrix got through the 5th inning in 6 pitches!!! When was the last time a Cubs pitcher was able to do that?

  • Maybe Hoyer should have said it was time for Hendricks to pitch. Methinks EJax could learn a bit about how to pitch from a guy like KH- even though it is the Padres I think the Cubs have themselves quite a talent.

  • In reply to Paulson:

    And yes, it is time for Mendy to homer.... niiiice. The two new Cubs having an immediate impact.

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    1 for 3 with a walk and oh yeah, a solo shot out of the stadium.

    I think they did the smart move in DFA Barney.

    I like having two switch hitters w speed at the top of the order, should produce more RBI chances for Rizzo n Castro.

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    Nice mention of Fels tonight by Len Kasper. Class Act.

  • In reply to Dale Miller:

    Kasper definitely gets what is important to Cub fans.

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    In reply to Dale Miller:

    I didn't like Kasper at first, but now I am a huge fan, and this makes it moreso. I basically want he and pat hughes to stick around forever.

  • In reply to Dale Miller:

    Yeah, that was nice to hear. Len's a mensch.

  • In reply to Eldrad:

    Anyone know what inning the Fels mention was? I'd like to play it back on my

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    In reply to TokyoCraig:

    4th or 5th inning I think Tokyo. It was really nice. Len said he traded emails with Felzzy and thought he was very knowledgeable about baseball.

  • In reply to Sean Holland:

    Sounds about right. It wasn't early and pretty sure it was before the 7th. Definitely not the top of the 7th.

  • In reply to TokyoCraig:

    Bottom of the 5th when Castro comes up.

  • Alcantara HR followed by Rizzo getting his second of the night. The future is coming.

  • For those lamenting the loss of Darwin Barney, Mendy tied Darwin's season total for HRs in the majors already.

  • In reply to Chupacabra:

    And he has also tied a genuine slugger too, Travis Wood.

  • In reply to Chupacabra:

    I wonder if we send Barney & Schierholtz to Oakland (they need a 2B and an OF) that we could up grade our PTBNL to Alcantera or Overton?

  • In reply to bleachercreature:

    That idea probably only works IF Okland has the roster space to absorb these two.

  • For al those people saying that we should continue to WAIT to bring up prospects, even when they are READY (and I am not saying anyone in particular is).....what is to stop you, or the FO, from saying the SAME EXACT THING NEXT YEAR. At this time next year, what would you say if both Baez and Bryant were at AAA to save yet another year of service time? At some point, this FO needs to get off the pot. I personally think it will be next year, I just hope they don't wait too long and it's too late to make any noise because I for one believe they can win a wild card spot next year if they play their cards right (and their players).

  • In reply to INSaluki:

    Relax, the plan is in motion. This season will give us hope, next season will give us improvement, 2016 will get us as close to the promised land as we've ever been.

    Felzzy, I miss you already. :-(

  • In reply to INSaluki:

    The point that the FO will "get off the pot" is that point when the REST of the team is ready to compete for a playoff spot. Until then, it makes no sense whatsoever to give away a full year of a player's service - during his prime years, no less - for a few weeks of MLB experience during a meaningless season.

  • In reply to INSaluki:

    They are not just sitting on the pot. Been taking a mammoth dump. Making room for the coming meal which will be glorious.

  • In reply to Greggie Jackson:


  • In reply to INSaluki:

    Your remarks seem suspicious and accusatory rather than thought-out assessment of what is in the minds of the FO. IOW, the FO thinks money/contracts trump going out to win, when there is absolutely no evidence of that. Do you or anyone else actually believe they have acquired all these young studs to sit them in the minors?

    I keep reading that '15 should start with at least Baez and Bryant on the big league roster because otherwise they "give up" those first weeks. That's to say, IMO, that starting them here would be the way to not lose those weeks, but if anyone can guarantee that, they ought to be hired to the FO themselves. Who is to say that letting them tune-up at AAA and then bringing them up to get a big boost going forward wouldn't work out better? We may be coming from behind in the standings, but can you say we wouldn't be anyway? We would still have plenty of time to get into the race if these kids indeed provide that boost, and the service clock is not compromised in the mean time.

  • I wholeheartedly agree with you about Len and Pat. Losing Bob was tough. Len and a Bob should have gone on as long as those two wanted to be a team. Pat Hughes is just an absolute joy to hear and we all take him for granted a bit, especially that he has still been a worthy listen through some truly horrible seasons. Listen to the mediocrity that is announcing for Cardinal baseball or Sox baseball, and it's plain to see that we have lucked out big time with Len and Pat.

  • Let's look at some numbers--suppose (against all rational expectations) that both Baez and Bryant will each be 4 WAR players in their first year, for a total of 8 WAR. If they are held out of the first quarter of next season, that means a gross loss of two wins, assuming that their replacements have a WAR of 0. Why would we trade a maximum of two wins next year for a potential 10+ wins in their prime a few years down the road? The goal is multiple World Series wins, not making the playoffs. We've made the playoffs already.

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