Advertisement:

Cubs Notes: Kris Bryant named Sporting News Rookie of the Year, Schwarber speculation, Ross to return, and other notes

Cubs Notes: Kris Bryant named Sporting News Rookie of the Year, Schwarber speculation, Ross to return, and other notes

It may have been a foregone conclusion but Kris Bryant has been named NL Rookie of the year by the players via the Sporting News.

Bryant had a tremendous season, slashing .275/.369/.488 while hitting 26 HRs and stealing 13 bases.  He also drove in 99 runs.  In terms of advanced metrics, Bryant looks even more impressive.  He ranked 19th in all of baseball in wOBA (.371).  That number was good for 1oth overall in the NL and tops among rookies in both leagues.

Bryant also ranked 5th in the NL in WAR at 6.5, in part because he was impressive on defense.  Bryant's UZR/150 of 5.4 ranked 5th in the NL among qualified 3Bs.

We could go on with the impressive numbers all day long, but Cubs fans don't need to be sold.  Bryant was one of the Cubs most productive players all season and what may have been most remarkable was how quickly he re-adjusted as pitchers began to adjust to him.  That allowed him to maintain an impressive level of consistency all season -- especially for a rookie.

It also is a sign that the best is yet to come -- which makes him fit right in with this Cubs team.

Kyle Schwarber finished 5th.

Kyle Schwarber trade?

Speaking of Schwarber, there has been some recent speculation that the Cubs will move him this offseason.  I don't buy it.  The Cubs are enamored with Schwarber, both as a hitter and what he brings in the clubhouse.  There seems to be a bit of an overreaction because  he misplayed some flyballs on the the big stage and I think that is likely what is spurring that speculation.

During the season, his UZR/150 in the OF was a below average -- but acceptable -2.0.  It is acceptable because of what he brings to the Cubs in other phases of the game.

The Cubs have not yet ruled out  Schwarber as catcher either and that is something we'll undoubtedly know more about in the spring.

Other Notes...

  • Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reports that David Ross will return to the Cubs in 2016.  Ross may be past his prime in terms of his production, but he was lauded more than any other player for bringing this young team together.  Keeping Ross is as much as about continuity  as it is anything else -- and we know that Jon Lester will appreciate that every bit as much as the young players will.
  • One theory I heard is that the Cubs could pursue Jason Heyward -- but only  if they have to trade Jorge Soler to get pitching.  That makes some sense as far as rearranging the pieces.  As much as I like Soler, the Cubs will have to make some difficult moves this offseason to re-shape their team.  Starting pitching, more contact hitters, and better defense are the 3 big goals -- and swapping Soler for a young top 3 starter and then signing Heyward would go a long way toward accomplish all 3 of those goals.  As far as pitching goes, Indians starter Danny Salazar is the name that seems to keep popping up.  Salazar pitched 185 innings and was 14-10 with a 3.45 ERA (3.62 FIP).  He's a power pitcher who averaged 95 mph on his fastball -- yet throws strikes (2.58 walks per 9 IP).  He is also going to be 26 for the entire 2016 season, which fits in with the young core.  I don't know if the Cubs can land him, but he certainly seems like a perfect fit for the Cubs in terms of his numbers, age, and approach on the mound.  Heyward also fits in terms of defense, approach, and age.

 

 

Filed under: Uncategorized

Comments

Leave a comment
  • Nice Quick bit there John. Thanks.

    I wonder if any other cubs made the list.

  • In reply to Bilbo161:

    I accidentally hit publish too early :)

    More notes added now. Thanks.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to John Arguello:

    You really think the Cubs will pay Heyward the 20 mil. a season or more to play CF for the next 8 years or whatever he'll get in terms of years with all these top of the line outfield prospects on the come? IDK it seems like a desperate move to me. I know Bryant did well at third, but is that the best thing for him? I think he'd be best in RF if Soler is traded. I worry about him having back & leg issues. Guess these are all good problems to have, but I really would like them to hold off on a Heyward signing. I want to see what happens with all these great OF prospects. At least 2-3 of them have to make it. Just my cents here.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Johnny Hatelak:

    2 cents. Really wish there was an edit button on here with my horrific typing, and poor ability to proofread before I press send. At the very least a delete button. LOL!

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Johnny Hatelak:

    I don't think the Cubs can or should count on many of the next wave of prospects to all pan out like the first wave seems to have. The normal prospect attrition rate is quite high (meaning, most of them don't turn into stars or even regulars). The fact that things are looking good so far for everyone the Cubs called up doesn't mean that will continue, and it most likely won't. Therefore, if they need to pay money for someone, they should. Seems to me the whole point of having a bunch of young, cost controlled players enables them to go out and spend money at the few positions that aren't covered. We aren't the Royals. Don't need to wait around and hope all the prospects pan out. Spend some money. I'm not saying it should be on Heyward, necessarily, but they shouldn't wait around and hope Almora becomes a star. Sign a star and play him until Almora makes a case, which ,so far, he hasn't - at least offensively.

  • In reply to Johnny Hatelak:

    I don't see Almora as "great", at least not yet. And McKinney seems destined for corner. So that leaves the guys drafted near the top this past June. I don't see them here for at least 2 years. Cubs contention window is basically now. Heyward would be a great addition to the already strong lineup. He showed he can get it done in the post season as well. He would definitely take some pressure off of Rizzo too. Is it big money? Sure it its. But I feel he's worth it if it means a title. Would also stick it to the Cubs main rival.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    Almora's ceiling is what about the best of what Heyward has produced. Heyward is truly valued because of his defense, as his offense has not been spectacular; Chris Coghlan had a better OPS in 2014 than Heyward and nobody was thinking Coghlan deserved $10mm a year, much less $20mm, even if we assumed Coghlan would do that same production every year.

    Heyward is still, IMO, someone people are projecting future development and bigger numbers. He hasn't shown he can be a great CF'd, he hasn't shown he will hit for middle of the order power or consistently give you .290-.310 average. But he potentially could do these things. It is fine for me if someone wants to pay $200+mm over 8 years for such potential hopes. That would not be a good choice, IMO.

  • In reply to springs:

    Ok, first, I wasn't comparing Heyward to Coghlan. But since you brought him up, Coghlan has done it twice now... so of course wouldn't be approaching those $ figures. Where as Heyward is going to be 26 & has done it for 6 seasons & doesn't even compare to Coghlan on defense... Heyward by far is better.

    I was replying to Johnny Halatek about Almora ("great OF prospects"). I'll also counter you that Almora's minor league OBP hasn't even come close to Heyward's Major league OBP. And Heyward has done it on the big league level while Almora is still developing & may not develop to even hold Heyward's jock on offense. I hope he does, but he hasn't given me reason to think he will. Heyward has averaged double digit HRs in bigs, Almora's best in minors is 9. All he would have to do is equal Heyward's production on offense to reach a higher ceiling simply because he is that good on defense. Heyward has established his floor... & it's not a very low 1 in my opinion, & in your own admission still has room to raise it up. Almora, in my opinion would have a lower floor because he hasn't even hit like a top prospect in the minors yet. Is he incrementally improving? Sure, but not "bring him up to the bigs any time soon" improvement. Maybe he can't hit in the bigs maybe he can. We simply don't know. Can Heyward?

    The Cubs window has now opened. Almora hasn't shown that he is ready to jump in & contribute on offense. I'd much rather have Heyward or Coghlan (your example) than Almora right now. But Cogs can't play CF & Heyward can & has on the big league level.

  • fb_avatar

    I think we all expected it but I am happy to see that he is being acknowledged by the rest of the country. His production was staggering. And, as you said, John, he was able to re-adjust multiple times. I remember seeing some games where he clearly struggled (3-4 K's) and I just knew he didn't need to be told to work on things, he already knew he would have to. He would listen to his coach and usually was able to snap right back and force the league to re-adjust. He is mature, patient, and turned many 0-2 counts to 4-2 counts.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    KB is special. No doubt. What most need to realize is that he is a very rare breed. The exception to the rules... It is not fair to expect the likes of Soler, Baez, Russell, etc. to mature so quickly and adjust so easily. Bryants father was a professional baseball player and has been grooming him for this since his toddler years.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    I agree. I didn't mean to imply that he is what we should "expect" from our young players.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    No, you didn't... Just have seen a lot of "trade him because..." When the reality is we still don't know who will bust and who will reach their ceiling.

  • Congrats to Kris for this well-deserved award. The future looks bright!

  • fb_avatar

    OK, I read that Correa won for the AL. Opinions on whether you would rather have Correa or Bryant and why?

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    Bryant. Those beautiful blue eyes :)

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Joel Mayer:

    I asked Dave Cameron that exact question in a chat on Fangraphs. He said Bryant.

    Thinking about it objectively, I can see an argument for Correa, he plays a premium defensive position. Bryant hasn't tapped the ceiling of his power, though, which is scary.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Correa is a stud. There is no wrong answer to that question.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Michael Ernst:

    I agree. That is why I posed it. I was curious what things people value. It is kind of like Cy Young in the NL this year.

  • KB struck out 200 times in 2015, a large number of them on called strikes out of the zone. Cut his Ks by 1/3 and he likely becomes a 40/120 power hitter. BTW this answers the question before 2015, whos ROY, Bryant or Soler.

  • In reply to mutant beast:

    I admit I was wrong. I picked Soler. I thought Bryant would be in the minors longer and Jorge would have a lead on him. Oh well can't be upset because we get to keep them both. Go Cubs.

  • In reply to mutant beast:

    I believed Bryant would be. He was lauded by every "expert" & publication. Soler was touted, but nowhere near as highly as Bryant. Staying healthy also based my opinion. But hey, that's a real cool decision to have to try & make for 1 team... Schwarber & Russell also coming up this year. Holy crap, they have a great young nucleus. Soler would be the only 1 of that group I would "consider" trading, although I hope it doesn't come to that.

  • fb_avatar

    Congrats KB !
    the best is yet to come

    and he drives a cab in his free time :

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xaUf1R7Tvv8

  • Just added more info, everyone...

    Accidentally hit publish before I was finished :)

  • Hate to lose Soler but putting Salazar behind Arrieta and Lester gives the Cubs a hell of a rotation. Adding an elite right fielder like Heyward makes Soler expendable.

  • not sure about ditching soler. he was impressive in October and I'm not sure anyone other than Mike Stanton hits the ball harder. He certainly needs to work on his defense, but that can be addressed and I'm sure it will be.

  • In reply to cubsker:

    I dunno how much better Soler will really get defensively. He's not new to RF. He doesn't seem to me to have those good defensive instincts. I see an average defender at best and below average as more likely.

  • In reply to AJWorld:

    I disagree. Defense through hard work can improve, sometimes drastically. Jorge is only 23 years old. IMO he will improve his defense. His ability to control the strike zone is good. You have to keep him if possible. If someone blows you away in a trade offer then OK but I would definitely say he is a keeper.

  • In reply to cubsker:

    Schwarber isn't going anywhere. Soler either maybe castro we shall see. I think they sign a cf and sign a starter. Resign wood. Hammel will be there 5th starter. If he falters look for pierce johnson or cj? In 2017 hammel jackson come off the payroll. Then you can pay arrieta. As lester and price? Contracts go away all these young starters should be ready to reach the bigs. So I don't see them trading position players this off season.

  • This is exactly the big pieces I would like to see. Soler for Santana and Heyward in FA. I'm a big fan of Soler, but you have to trade quality to get quality.

    I would also move Bryant to RF and Castro to 3b leaving Baez at 2b.

    And I'd sign a veteran starter. Lackey would look great in Cub Blue.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to AJWorld:

    If you put Bryant in RF, is Heyward in LF?

    I do like the idea of getting Salazar for a package centered on Soler, followed by signing Heyward.

    I also wonder what it would take to get Eaton from the Sox.

  • In reply to Glen Krisch:

    no way Heyward ever plays LF

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to CubfanInUT:

    That's my point. Heyward is in RF, and if Bryant winds up in RF, he plays LF (possibly CF in smaller parks). I like how Heyward controls the strike zone on offense and if plus-plus on defense.

  • In reply to Glen Krisch:

    Heyward in CF. Schwarber in LF.

    And, Good God No!!! to the idea of Eaton. He is one of the dumbest players in MLB right now. There's a reason that AZ is glad he's gone. Plus, he's not a particularly good defender.

    But, in the end, he's just dumb. No way. Absolutely, no way.

  • In reply to Glen Krisch:

    Why does everyone want Heyward so badly? You're going to pay >$160M for an .800 OPS corner OF who can't hit LHP

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Kramerica20:

    The cost of signing Heyward is why I'd like to see them consider going after Brantley in a Brantley + Salazar trade. I know the cost in prospects would be high, but those two players are both young, have good contracts, and are well-established in their careers.

  • In reply to Glen Krisch:

    Brantley would look really nice in the Cubs lineup. But if you don't like Soler's defense, you won't like Brantley's either. The thought of what it would take to get a Brantley + Salazar talk started makes me ill. I really hope they don't trade Soler.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Kramerica20:

    You're probably right. I'm just all about trying to find more players with less swing and miss to their games. Maybe that could eventually become Soler.

  • In reply to Glen Krisch:

    No doubt. Soler was 10% BB rate. He'll never strike out as infrequently as someone like Brantley, but I think the strike zone got him out of his groove early on in MLB. For the most part, guys will keep consistent K and BB rate from. MiLB to the bigs. I'd bet on 2016 Soler to look more like minor league Jorge than 30% K 2015 Jorge. Couple that with the power he projects to provide... Trading him for someone like Salazar would be a HUGE mistake in my opinion.

  • In reply to Kramerica20:

    Meant that to say Soler was >10% BB and <25% K in minors.

  • In reply to Kramerica20:

    +1,000,000

  • In reply to Kramerica20:

    Heyward can play CF. If they signed him, that's probably where he'd play.

    And to AJ, I'd rather see Baez at 3B & Castro left at 2B. I think they found a good thing & gets the best out of Castro at 2B. But just the thought of these guys being able to play 3 positions is really cool. So much versatility allows front office to make just about any move they'd want w/out worrying about who's gonna play where if they trade someone.

  • In reply to Glen Krisch:

    Id rather get Inciarte from the Snakes rather than Eaton, who happens to be a below-average leadoff man and a below average CF. Inciarte is better than Eaton in both respects.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to mutant beast:

    Sure, Inciarte is better in the field, but how is he a better leadoff man? Eaton would be a better defender than Fowler, who wasn't horrible last year.

  • In reply to AJWorld:

    I would be comfortable with all you suggest. I DO wonder how much Heyward is going to command. I don't see the cards giving up easily.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Hubbs16:

    My guess is 5-6 years at $25-28M/year, if you want fewer years it will have to be at the higher end of the AAV scale.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    Heyward is going to sign for 8+ years in my estimation. We've seen older players with less defensive value sign long deals like this.

  • In reply to Michael Ernst:

    You could be right but I've also heard/read speculation that Heyward would bet on himself, sing a 6 year deal and be eligible for another payday at 32. Not many players get two big paydays but given his age he could. Given that I'm guessing 6/$150 might get it done. I'd be fine with that and signing Samardzija for 5/$75. You'd end up filling two huge holes for the cost of David Price.

  • In reply to Hubbs16:

    I'd offer Heyward $182M over 7 years ($26M per) with an opt out clause after 3. Most likely, he'll take the opt out because his best years should be his next 5. By then Eddy Julio Martinez or perhaps another prospect can take over.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to AJWorld:

    That's an interesting idea. We will know a lot more about where we stand in 3 years.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    The problem with a player opt out clause is the if he does well, you lose him, while if he is injured or just plain bad, you have him for four more years. I don't like the "heads you win, tails I lose" kind of odds.

  • In reply to AJWorld:

    That's around what I was thinking it could take. Hopefully he would opt out and Almora would step up. There does seem to be lots of trade options at CF as well though.

  • In reply to AJWorld:

    Castro to 3B? He has a good arm for SS, but I don't know if he has a good arm for 3B. It's, again, another position he has to learn, he's looked rather comfortable at 2B this year thus far, and him and Russell have been rather excellent on the DP combo.

    I'd rather see Baez at 3B in this scenario, if you'd move Bryant to RF.

    Lackey is also 37, he has Cardinals Voodoo-magic keeping his game alive. There's no chance he signs for the Cubs.

  • In reply to awfullyquiet:

    Still wouldn't mind trying out Castro in CF either. Would take some coaching but he would have the off season to train. Not like he had a lot of experience before jumping to 2B, which he hadn't played since rookie ball (short stint at fall league too), the same year he also had 3B experience. Outfield would be a whole new animal but you would have the off season and spring training to get him the reps.

  • John,
    I have read a bunch of comments over the past couple of days about how we can't trade any of our young players (Soler, Baez, Bryant, Schwarber, Russell, Castro, etc.) as they provide too much of a competitive advantage relative to other teams in terms of different line-up configurations, depth, etc. And I get that, it was a really fun season to watch.
    However, as you have said many times, Theo has been very transparent in his approach. That is, he feels that when given a high selection in the draft - there is a much greater probability of hitting on a high position player than pitcher. Then use the rest of the draft to find pitching with volume (of selections). Of course the down side of this approach is that although you miss out on a generationally great pitcher, you also don't set yourself up for a monumental bust. Clearly, this philophy seems to be working for his team.
    My point is, Theo seems to have made it pretty transparent that this day was coming - that he would use one of his high potential position players (that had a higher probability of becoming just that) for some other teams high potential pitcher (that had a lower probably of becoming that when drafted by his team).
    So it was inevitable that this day was coming of losing Soler, Castro, Baez, or even Schwarber.

  • In reply to travelguy:

    You seem to get it. That's the idea.

  • In reply to travelguy:

    Correct on all counts, except for one minor thing:

    - is there a deal that can be made that would require Bryant? This is sacrilege, I know, but I keep hearing about using resources to make trades for TOR starters, using our current prospects or 'maybe Soler or Castro' to pull it off. It's gonna take more than that.

  • I really like Soler's power and arm, but boy would I like to have a top young starter and Jason Heyward. Soler does have a red flag or two(defense/injury), but when he exhibits strike zone discipline Jorge is scary. If we sign Heyward the Cubs would no longer have the unenviable task of trying to beat the team who's ass he is kicking.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to 44slug:

    Heyward "checks a lot of boxes." He bats LH, has some power, doesn't strike out, gets on base and is a "plus" defender. He is a veteran but still just getting into his prime. I am more comfortable giving a big contract to him than any of the TOR starters available in FA this year.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    ^this

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    I'd be much more comfortable giving Span a 1-year deal to get similar production.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    I posted this in another response but I'll frame it a bit different here. A lot of people want David Price. You can likely sign Heyward and Samardzija for virtually the same money it would cost to sign Price. Think about that for a second.

  • In reply to TC154:

    IDK signing Heyward and Samardzija for 40 million a year combined sounds like a lot of money to me. As for Price, he is not coming here unless he leaves money on the table because he will get more somewhere else. Probably NY or LA.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Agreed. Signing Heyward and then just keeping him on the bench probably nets us two wins.

  • In reply to travelguy:

    I can't believe that the Cubs would pay what it will cost to sign Heyward and then negate much of his value by playing him in center field. He is a great right fielder. He is a mediocre center fielder. On his best day.

  • fb_avatar

    I hope Baez or Castro is dealt and not Soler.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Cubs Win 009:

    I would rather have Soler dealt than Baez and am still up in the air about Castro. Baez can hit a ton, is younger (though not by much) and is a versatile and very talented defender. Also, our outfield is getting more crowded than our infield.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Joel Mayer:

    To each his own. But Soler for a #3 starter seems like an overpay to me. Especially when you consider his modest salary. Soler: he's the cat who can hit a ton. I could see him putting up Rizzo-like numbers.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Cubs Win 009:

    I am hesitant to get just a #3 starter for him, but that wasn't really my point. My point was that if I had to choose between Baez and Soler for the same return I would trade Soler. Again, I am up in the air about Castro. My gut feeling is that Soler has a good deal more trade value than Castro.

    Along that line, though, should we trade Castro if he has a slash line in May of .305/.345/.415/.760 and providing 2B defense like he was in August-Sept? Or is he too valueable at that point?

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Joel Mayer:

    I would trade either Castro or Baez for a #3 starter. For Soler, it would have to be someone young, really good, and who could slot right behind Arrieta.

  • In reply to Cubs Win 009:

    Well the two pitchers from Cleveland seem to profile as TOR guys. According to Fangraphs they were 15th and 31st in WAR this year. They seem to be breaking out. Salazar being the younger of the two. It would be a hard thing to do but Theo may trade Soler for Salazar. He is being paid the big bucks to make those decisions. And he is quite good at trading. I will accept any trade he makes. It most likely will be good.

  • In reply to Cubs Win 009:

    I agree that I would not include Soler in a deal for a MOR starter. If Soler goes, it better be for an older proven TOR guy or a young guy with TOR stuff.

  • In reply to Cubs Win 009:

    Soler, Bryant, Russell and Schwarbs, there is no way their value is maxed out currently. In a year from now, I really believe every one of them will likely have more value than they do currently. They are still so young and should improve offensively and defensively over the next 12 months.
    I know we need pitching, and will have to make some deals. But those deals IMO should come from some sort of combinations of : Castro, Montero, Hammel, (maybe) Baez, and Voggy. And if it takes Hendricks, along with some of those to complete a nice package for the right guy(s), so be it. But I keep the studs for one more year to really see for ourselves, how special they are.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Cubs Win 009:

    I basically agree, we're talking different trade value though. Soler has more trade value, so we should all expect more. Baez and Castro are limited, particularly Castro who is owed $40 mil over 4 years.

  • When experts condemn the Cubs defense, do they consider that all of our rookies were undergoing OJT at positions they had rarely (if ever )played in their professional careers?

    Kyle Schwarber's professional OF resume includes 36 MiLB games and 43 MLB games. And prior to being called up, Kyle had made zero OF appearances this year.

    Addison Russell played zero games at 2B prior to being called up and thrown to the wolves this year.

    Due to injuries, Jorge Soler has barely a season (155 games) of MiLB OF experience under his belt.

    Javy Baez has only played 36 MiLB games at 2B and 0 games at 3B.

    Kris Bryant has 0 MiLB OF appearances.

    And everybody's second favorite whipping boy, Chris Coghlan had 2, 8, and 0 prior MLB appearances at 2B, 3B, 1B respectively.

    The point I'm trying to make is that our Defense is still in the oven. We should applaud these guys for stepping up and playing outside their comfort zone. I fully expect that with a solid ST and a few more MLB reps under their belt, our defense will no longer be considered a weakness.

    (And, I've triple checked my HTML tags and hope I didn't miss an end tag)

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to DropThePuck:

    I read somewhere that, despite limited time at 2B and SS he came in 4th in the league at EACH position in defensive runs saved.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    Russell?

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Richard Beckman:

    Yes. Sorry.

  • In reply to DropThePuck:

    Great point, Soler is merely scratching the surface of his capabilities. He is raw but appears coachable. I trust this FO to develop him while on the MLB roster. Same holds true for Schwarber as a C. For Catchers, it is almost impossible to work on pitch framing in the minors. The precision is just not there.

    To me, I do not touch either of those two this year in trades. Their best is yet to come defensively.

  • In reply to DropThePuck:

    I give Schwarber a bit of a pass in the playoffs because I can't recall the wind playing any kind of a major factor in any of the regular season games he played in the OF. In fact, I really can't recall the wind playing any kind of factor outside of some April games. That may well have been Schwarber's first time dealing with the Wrigley wind patterns.

  • I lost track of this, but did Scott Boras ever follow through on this threat to file a grievance because the Cubs kept KB at Iowa through the first 10 games?

  • In reply to DropThePuck:

    I think he has said the Cubs were developing KB well in the Majors. I think he is happy at the moment. Plus Kris won ROY. I have heard of no grievance filed.

  • In reply to DropThePuck:

    The case isn't provable (even though it is absolutely clear what the Cubs did). Unless someone in the FO put something in an email that someone could leak there is nothing Boras can do.

  • In reply to Michael Ernst:

    The case isn't provable because there is no case to prove. It is absolutely clear what the Cubs did. When Theo was asked about Boras' "allegations", he laughed and stated it is not the function of a player's agent to dictate how an organization developes talent. Anyone in the Cubs front office could have taken out a full-page ad in the Newcase. York Times stating they were keeping Bryant in the minors to begin the season to gain an extra year of control. Even with that paid public admission, there is no

  • Soler cant be traded until Heyward is signed imo. so dont have to worry about that till that actually happens.. think Baez/Castro are the guys they would like to trade.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to CubfanInUT:

    Yes, that might be preferable, but I can imagine people saying that we had lost our leverage if we sign Heyward first similar to how people said we lost leverage in trying to trade Castillo when we signed Ross.

    If we trade Soler we can simply put Bryant in RF, Schwarber in LF and Baez at 3B. Given my choice, though, I would trade Soler and go all-in trying to sign Heyward. If nothing else, it would make the Cardinals sweat.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    I thought they would be signing Heyward to replace Fowler in center. Now they are signing him to replace Soler? I understand Heyward is good, but we still don't know Soler's ceiling and Soler is, I assume, considerably cheaper.

    Seems like a lot of money for how much of an improvement?

  • In reply to Richard Beckman:

    It's not necessarily meant to be an improvement.

    The theory would be that Heyward improves the defense in RF, helps balance the lineup and makes more contact (even if it means a step back in terms of raw production), and frees them up to trade Soler for a young pitcher. The thinking being that investing a big contract in Heyward is safer than investing a big contract in Price (or any other vet SP).

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Richard Beckman:

    The advantages to signing Heyward (as I see it) are:
    1. A better sample size. Soler has limited minor league experience (637 PAs).

    2. Heyward has skills we need. Heyward has less power than Soler's ceiling but everything else leans toward Heyward. And power is the one thing that the Cubs have plenty of, overall. I don't think Soler will ever match Heyward's K% and Heyward does draw walks very well too. Soler might be able to match the BB%. But that would be pretty close to his ceiling.

    3. Defense. Heyward is roundly considered a VERY good defender. Despite early predictions of "GG defense" from Soler it really hasn't come to pass.

    In truth we probably don't have enough to go on to make good judgments about Soler, but a player like Heyward doesn't usually become a FA this early in their career and I would like to pounce on him.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    "Heyward has less power than Soler's ceiling but everything else leans toward Heyward."

    And I think that actually is a good thing. How many power hitters does a team need? Granted our OBP helps with that, in the sense of giving us baserunners, but, being able to situationally hit is something that I think the team needs to learn how to do better as a whole. Heyward has shown after his first few years in Atlanta to be pretty good at it. Not saying Soler can't be, but, you're looking at right now, and you want some guys in the lineup to have _that_ skill, I think.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    there is a difference.. Castillo is a ho hum catcher. Soler is a possible 30+HR candidate who is young

  • In reply to CubfanInUT:

    Well that's the conundrum of being an MLB GM.

    Sign Heyward before trading Soler and you lose significant leverage. The rest of the league knows you have to move Soler so you're going to get less in return. Trade Soler before you've signed Heyward and you get maximum value for Soler but...you may not sign Heyward after all and leave yourself with a gaping hole.

    That's what MLB front offices lose sleep over...

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to YouCannotBeSerious:

    I think that trading Soler early will be less likely to blow up in our faces. While we don't have a logjam yet trading Soler and moving Bryant to RF might help avoid a logjam forming.

  • In reply to YouCannotBeSerious:

    I dont see that being an issue.. if multiple teams are interested in Soler, they will want him regardless if we have Heyward or not.. if there are other teams with interest. the offers will not suffer.. Cubs will just say - "OK, we will keep Soler" so???

  • In reply to CubfanInUT:

    That's a very Cub-centric point of view. Other MLB teams would see that more realistically.

  • In reply to YouCannotBeSerious:

    all it takes is one team willing to deal to make a trade. if you are a team trying to trade for Soler. Are you willing to risk they will view it as the same as you and lowball?

  • What do you guys think about this one? (assuming we sign Heyward):

    Julio Teheran and Cameron Maybin to the Cubs
    Jorge Soler, Billy McKinney and Armando Rivero to the Braves

    My reasoning:

    Maybin can be a stop gap in CF for Almora.
    Teheran had a down year but has an extremely team friendly contract.
    Soler would obviously be expendable if the Cubs sign Heyward.
    McKinney is blocked by Schwarber (who will not be traded).
    Rivero would help the Braves horrific bull pen.

    I think it would make sense for both teams.

  • In reply to TD40:

    we would have to give up more than that to get Maybin also

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to CubfanInUT:

    Would we have to pay more? Maybin isn't that impressive. His OPS+ is 95, his wRC+ is 94, his fWAR is 1.0, bWAR is 0.6. He is being paid about market rate for a 1 WAR player (~$7M) and that comes with a -1.5 dWAR. I almost wonder if including him makes it more likely that we get Teheran.

  • The only way I can imagine Schwarber being traded is if another club wanted him so badly they were willing to make a terribly lopsided trade.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to couch:

    My rule of thumb for "Would I trade a player" is, "Would I trade him if the Angels offered Trout + $25M/season to offset his salary?" If the answer is yes then the answer to "Would I trade Player X". Now we will just have to debate the details of the deal. The idea doesn't have to be plausible. If another team would trade me something of sufficient value then I would definitely pull the trigger. And there is ALWAYS sufficient value--though it may not be "plausible."

  • In reply to couch:

    And it is very unlikely for another team to blow us away for Schwarber considering how our FO values him. IMO Schwarber is going to be in a Cubs uniform for a long time. Personally I want to see if he can put another ball on top of the score board.

  • I know I'm in the minority,but I would trade schwarber for sonny gray or chris archer.He's a DH not a Lf or C.Contreras is the C of the future you gotta give up something to get something so why not get one of the best young pitchers out there.

  • In reply to bolla:

    I don't think Oakland, TB or Cubs would do that trade. Each team really likes their player.

  • In reply to bolla:

    we've never even seen Contreras hit in the big leagues if he even can! it's astounding the desire to trade away the best two young hitters on the team in favor of upcoming hopefuls to fill their spots.
    we are NOT going backward, as great as Archer and Gray were this season, they watched the playoffs while schwarber and soler mashed.

  • In reply to bolla:

    Schwarber will be fine in LF and probably can be a decent part time catcher for a handful of years as well.

  • In reply to Michael Ernst:

    I don't think that Schwarber is as bad a left fielder as Holliday is, and yet the "best team in baseball" has lived with his defense in order to get his offense in the lineup.

  • In reply to Michael Ernst:

    If Hank Sauer was able to man LF for the Cubs, we can get by with Schwarber. No team is ever going to have the perfect player at each position. Kyle's bat can overcome his defense, and I don't doubt his ability to become an average fielder. As long as we have a very good CF, we are fine.

  • In reply to bolla:

    The catcher of the future is a Contreras/Schwarber platoon.

  • Chance of Kyle Schwarber being dealt this offseason: 0.0%

    Untouchables: Rizzo, Bryant, Schwarber, Arrieta, and Lester (because of his contract).

    This core will remain intact for at least 2016. If Arrieta regresses next year and contract talks become contentious, then I could see some scenarios where he could be dealt next offseason, but even that is unlikely.

  • In reply to Michael Ernst:

    I would add Addison to that list of untouchables.

  • In reply to John57:

    He would be close, but if the right offer came along (say a deal for Chris Sale), I would trade him and use Baez at SS.

    Rizzo/Bryant/Schwarber I would not trade for anyone.

  • In reply to Michael Ernst:

    Although Russell is someone the Sox would ask to be included in the package for Sale, I would still consider Russell an untouchable. And a Cubs-Sox trade involving Sale--I believe--has as much a chance as the Sox winning the World Series in 2016.

    Russell, I feel, is going to be the glue for the Cubs over the next ten years. He may not have the HOF stats when it is all said and done, but he will just as valuable as Rizzuto was for those Yankee teams of the 50's.

  • In reply to JollyCharlieGrimm:

    He does seem to have a calming influence on the entire defense. I think there is also a chance he is not a long term SS though. Maybe he ends up like Peralta and sticks there long beyond what anyone thought possible, but he could very well grow out of the position over the next ten years, although he would still be fine at 2B or 3B.

    I would include him in a deal for the right pitcher if need be. The luxury of having so many viable options as SS is that it gives you options to move one if a deal you can't pass up comes along.

  • In reply to Michael Ernst:

    Exactly right. Those 5 guys are untouchable, anyone else is fair game.

  • In reply to Michael Ernst:

    I would put Russell ahead of Schwarber. Schwarber is at a high point in value and not many teams think he can be a catcher. He looks like Adam Dunn right now. That is high praise for a rookie. If he can catch 30% of the games, He will be even more amazing. But I don't think he will hit for a high average, though. He will likely have a high BB%, K% and HR. His swing is not conducive to draw contact. If he were placed on the trading block, we could receive almost any pitcher in return. It would be a risky play, because it would leave only Rizzo as the only L handed power on the current ML roster.

    Soler and Baez's trade values are very low right now and would be selling low and likely not net the best possible return. I think one them could get traded during the July deadline.

  • In reply to Michael Ernst:

    Also, bonus points for the Animal House reference. "Mr. Blutarsky...zero...point...zero..." - Dean Wormer

  • I didn't read all the comments however i would this. As a long time anti-trade castro follower, i think he only increased his value to this team. His selfless play helped to galvanize this young team. He set the tone as a team leader in ways he doesn't get credit for because he's not getting 200 hits a season anymore.

  • In reply to TruLink:

    If Starlin is back next spring, I say fine. But, I am hoping trulink, that there is at least one MLB GM out there, that value's him, like you do. Getting Ross for him, would be nice - and fill a need.

  • In reply to cubbustible:

    SD does want Castro and why not, he is young and very good. What has to be determined is do they want him bad enough to give Ross. If they do, I make that trade and then I keep Soler and I don't sign Heyward. We get our young TOR starter and slot him in behind Arrieta and Lester. Baez can then play 2B in 2016.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to TruLink:

    I like Castro too, but the case for trading him is that a) we have viable 2B options internally, Baez and LaStella if Baez doesn't hit, and b) it would save $40 mil that can be re-purposed to something else, like another starting pitcher.

  • i don't think the cubs executives made us all wait so long to build this core to tear it down after one post season run. theo has said he will spend money and that the rickets will make money available when there are moves to be made. BUY pitching. they clearly don't value it enought to draft and take the risk on it-- buy established pitching,
    or if you're going to trade-- do so from surplus-- not gutting the place to get a pitcher or two who could just break down and we're stuck, suddenly no ready depth-- the next wave of replacement position players is a while off now--so hold your horses on trading starting playoff players.
    unless washing just needs to get rid of strassberg and bryce harper to clean up the atmosphere in that club house...........

  • In reply to dockv:

    Yep. They understand the volatility of pitching, so haven't drafted it in the first round. They signed Lester, but they knew him extensively, mitigating some risk. I can understand them wanting to use surplus minor league depth as currency for cost control TOR pitching. It makes a lot of sense. The MLB starting lineup is nearly set. Just needs a tweak or two. Trading from surplus is the best way to mitigate risk and keep costs down. It really is the best choice. Even signing a FA position player and then trading one on the roster for a cost controlled pitcher mitigates that risk. Though the former is preferable to the latter.

  • fb_avatar

    Last year at this time the majority were all on board with "we'll just buy pitching." I just never thought that was the #1 way Theo was headed. David Price was already being fitted for a Cub uniform if I remember correctly. Speed along to today and most informed fans have adjusted to the fact that the Cubs probably won't spend that $200M on Price.

    The 3 names that I continue to hear in trade rumors are Soler, Castro and Baez. I've been on that trade Castro or Baez bandwagon for 2 years now. I am a bit surprised to hear Soler's name but understand it. It's easy for us to just say trade this guy or that guy but the team on the other end also needs to accept it. So we just don't say take it or leave it with these trades. Most teams would say fine, I'll leave it and look elsewhere.

    With that said, I still stand that we will see a blockbuster trade or two. The Indians seem to really like Soler so the addition of Danny Salazar or Carlos Carrasco seems like a fair deal to me. I'm also hearing that the Padres may have changed their mind about Castro. If we could land Ross for Castro and maybe a prospect, I'd probably pull the trigger on that.

    Jesse Rogers also seems to think Montero might get traded to give the Schwarber experiment behind the plate a legit shot. If those deal are all planned then signing Heyward makes a whole lot of sense. But like John says, trading Soler is probably the catalyst.

    I know, I know. There goes Boca again with all his crazy talk. But my reasoning is more about getting the starting rotation stronger and getting a few more guys that put the bat on the ball. I could see LaStella getting a bigger role and Heyward helps with that idea as well.

    I don't think they really want to trade Baez but 2 of the 3 names I've mentioned may be gone by Spring training. The Montero trade is also a possibility depending on who the Cubs think will eventually be their #1 catcher between Schwarber or Contreras.

    Ok, you can beat me up now.... LOL

  • In reply to bocabobby:

    Price went out the window for me when they signed Lester. I have never been on board with two huge SP contracts. I didn't rule it out that they would go that route, though I have always doubted it, but Theo's comments seem to align with my feelings on the matter.

    I have little issue if they deal one of Soler or Baez for a young stud SP. They shouldn't settle for mediocrity in the deal though. The guy they get has to be a proven young starter with TOR stuff. If they can't get a guy like that, then they should just sign a MOR starter in FA, and keep their big bats.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Michael Ernst:

    Agreed

  • In reply to bocabobby:

    I could see them trading 1 of Castro & Baez, but not both. That would really deplete their depth at both SS & 2B especially if Russell has another hammy.

  • Trading 1 player is not tearing down the core. Theo has said buying pitching can be a mistake and you will overpay.

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    And he also said sometimes it is a necessary evil.....

  • Since when is the minor league depth so famished that people are focused only on trading our major league starters for pitching?? Teams that will trade their TOR pitching are rebuilding. They'll take upper minor league players.

    Cubs still have a great farm system. Might be more loaded towards lower minors now, but there is still guys like McKinney and Almora. Plenty of kids made obsolete by a tremendous starting position core in the majors. That's trade fodder.

    Not saying that Castro or Soler or Baez won't get traded, but I don't get why people assume we just pull down our pants, bend over and give up a Schwarber in a trade.

    Not only that, but until all the bigger free agent pitchers sign, there's no leverage for huge trade demands against a major market club like the Cubs.

  • In reply to cubbie steve:

    They won't give up Schwarber, that is just fan and sportswriter panic, but there are valid reasons for dealing one of Baez/Soler/Castro due to their redundancy and the desire to better balance the lineup or improve the overall team defense. They don't have to do it, but it is an option, as is making a deal using the second wave guys as you mentioned. They can explore both avenues and see what develops.

  • In reply to Michael Ernst:

    I do think it is highly likely to trade one of the three. My guess is that the FO wants to feel somewhat comfortable in understanding who each player is.

    Honestly, the only way I see Soler getting traded is if every team they reach out to insists on his inclusion, and then the discussion moves from "who can we use as the centerpiece" to "which player that we can trade Soler for do we value most?"

    Of course, they have greater knowledge about his injury history and his future propensity to injury. His body isn't going to get better at healing as he ages, after all.

  • In reply to cubbie steve:

    I can't say I am a big fan of having both Schwarber and Soler in the corners. Long term that is not a good plan. Next year, I can live with it, but Schwarber either needs to make a semi-regular transition back to catcher in 2017 or the team should explore dealing Soler at some point. I've never been a believer in Soler's defense and his lack of flexibility really scares me. While I think he may become a better hitter than Baez, I believe Soler is always going to be prone to lower body soft tissue injuries and I think there is a decent chance he becomes unplayable in the OF as his legs give out. That said, I would expect him to be playable as a defender throughout his cost controlled years (though I would prefer LF), so I have no issue with them keeping him for the next 5 years. I just don't want the team to extend him beyond that. He is the one guy that I don't believe will age well.

  • In reply to Michael Ernst:

    How can they be considered redundant when all three were in the starting line up in the play offs? How do you improve the overall team defense by trading any of them for a pitcher? Why would you want to break up the chemistry and cohesiveness that has been built up with this team? How does it improve the team to strengthen one position by weakening another? I don't think and certainly hope this FO does not operate that way.

  • I could get on board with Soler and Vogs for gaussman and Britton from the Orioles. Would prefer not to have to trade Soler if it can be avoided though.

  • The problem with Heyward is that he'll probably seek a Choo or Ellsbury type of deal.

    Let somebody else overpay for him.

  • Yankees short right field porch would entice Heyward.

  • John, I'd be interested to get your opinion on a couple of things.
    Do you see us bring back Trevor Cahill on a 1 year prove it deal and letting him compete for a starting spot. I thought he was awesome as a Cub. ?Bosio or just moving to the pen.
    Also do you think Edwards will also be given a shot at the rotation. He seems like he would be nice to have starting at AAA and coming up as depth when needed rather than a beeler or Don Roache type. Or is he now a BP fixture.

  • In reply to NZCub:

    I definitely think the Cubs will be interested in bringing back Cahill, but he may get a better deal somewhere else that can guarantee him a spot in the rotation.

    I think Edwards Jr. stays in the pen. He can be a real difference maker there and his size will also make his stamina as a full time starter a question.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Michael Ernst:

    It will be interesting on Cahill. If he wants to be a starting pitcher, his best move would be to sign with a bad club (Brewers?) on a 1-year pillow....the kind of pickup we used to do. He knows he was terrible as a starter though last year, and had his first success in 2 years with Bosio and Cubs.

    Cahill has already made pretty good money, and is only 27, so he might be lined-up to take a 1-year pillow and hit the market again after a good year in our bullpen

  • In reply to Zonk:

    If Cahill is willing to accept a relief role and wants to try and win a WS, the Cubs will be a good fit for him. If he wants to go back to starting he can find a better situation elsewhere. I think he will definitely have 1 year offers from clubs like the Brewers or Reds who were rolling out 5 rookies in their rotations at the end of the year. He could definitely be in a Hammel/Feldman/Maholm/Volstad situation. The Cubs really aren't in a position anymore to offer that type of role in the rotation to reestablish his value for a long term deal next offseason. If a veteran gets a chance to grab a rotation spot next year it will be Wood, and they might bring back Turner who apparently looked good last spring.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Michael Ernst:

    Problem is bad clubs can offer him a starting slot AND a shot at the playoffs, because if he performs they'll deal him to a contender.

    Theo and company showed the rest of the league how to do a "sign and flip"; we ended up with some good assets out of it. The only asset we had to give up was some cash, and a rotation slot we had to fill anyway.

  • Soler, Baez, Castro and Schwarber are the tradeable players on the major league roster. Bryant, Russell and Rizzo are not IMHO.

    Of those 4 Castro and Schwarber have high values and Soler and baez would be sell low, based on the past season. Schwarber's value can only get higher if he can play 20% or more games behind the plate, or shows better contact. I don't think Soler or Baez would be sold low, this front office is smarter than that. I think if a trade happens this offseason, it will involve castro, but his 143 PA at 2nd probably aren't enough to recoup value from the terrible 4 months.

    Most likely, I think the front office signs a Kazmir type pitcher for #3, signs Span type player for CF/leadoff, solidifies bench and bullpen. There is more likely to be a major trade at the deadline that involves which ever hitter is playing above his head and brings in either TOR pitcher or solid CF contact hitter.

    The only caveat I offer is if Heyward is willing to sign with an opt out after 3-4 years, then a major trade happens this offseason.

  • In reply to 1908cubs:

    There's no way they will put Schwarber on the block, IMO... He is the perfect offensive profile that they're looking for.

    He's patient, he can hit for average, he can hit for power and I think he will reduce his K rate closer to 25% as his career progresses.

  • In reply to Caps:

    You are right. The FO is no way trading Schwarber now.

  • If we trade Soler, I would want a a better return than Salazar. Soler's a potential All-Star bat signed to a team friendly deal. I would want a pitcher with more upside.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Cubs87:

    I would take Salazar in a minute for Soler. He's controllable through 2020, and has great stuff. I think the Indians will want more than Jorge, actually.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    YES, they would want more and rightfully so

  • In reply to CubfanInUT:

    I think that is a fair trade. If there are other players going back and forth they won't be much. After all they are the ones who are looking for a RH middle of the order bat. There are very few 23 year old bats like Jorge who own the playoff record of getting on base in their first 9 plate appearances. In fact there are none.

  • In reply to John57:

    salazar is 26 and has 100 mph fastball and was 3+ war last year.. thats worth more than Soler and his numbers

  • In reply to CubfanInUT:

    Soler is 23 and had an off year. He was messed up by the umps calling a really big strike zone in the beginning of the year. In the middle of the year he had a sprained ankle and missed a lot of games. You are seriously going to count this year results to determine what kind of player he will be in the future?? How about comparing their postseason stats. Here is Jorge's slash line in the postseason when the pressure is highest:
    .474/.600/1.105/1.705.
    Theo and their GM will look at the players and their skill set not just the results the player had this year. IMO they sound close in talent.

  • fb_avatar

    If we signed Heyward and traded Soler for a middle to high SP I would say that's a good deal. As much as I like Soler, and what I think he might become, Heyward is still young and proven and has great defense and arm and good speed. We're trading him for Soler, and Theo has always said that he wants players that are going into their prime, not past it.
    I want to keep Baez as a core player though.

  • i never understand why we are so worried about paying for pitching.
    pitching is a commodity. so is hitting. we are in a fortunate position where whe have ALL our position players cost controlled and on team friendly deals-- for the next 5 or so years-- so WHY is everyone just come to accept the "fact" that we "can't" but a TOR pitcher-- just because david kaplan reports there's gonna be a blockbuster trade?
    i do not understand why with all the new revenue that will pour in from the playoff run/ the surroundings to the ballpark, the higher tv ratings why it's suddenly so impossible to sign Price or Grienke or even Zimmerman-- and suddenly everyone's concocting ways to ship out our best playoff hitter. how about kris bryant then-- he did Nothing in the playoffs-- and is "too tall for 3rd base" and not a great outfielder.,
    or Rizzo- who's clearly got replacements all over the place on this or any other squad-- not that i want anyone traded-- just BUY pitching.
    Mike leake > current pitchers.

  • In reply to dockv:

    I think it's because if you pay let's say for a David Price NOW it's going to cost us in the long run when they have to try to resign all the position players that you mentioned. Those kids are going to pull a nice payday and they know it, and I think they should focus on resigning Arrieta to a deal first.

  • In reply to dockv:

    Paying 20-30M per year for a 30+ year old SP is risky. Doing it twice is even riskier. And considering that Arrieta will be in that situation shortly means that the club would then be in the situation where it would have to do it three times.

    Pitchers get hurt. Even if they don't get hurt, they can lose velocity as they age and become less effective. Then you have an albatross on your hands. The Cubs are big market team, so they can afford to eat one of those types of contract if they need to, but no team can easily absorb two, except maybe the Dodgers.

  • Interesting article written from the A's perspective:
    http://swinginas.com/2015/10/23/oakland-athletics-sonny-gray-perfect-fit-chicago-cubs/

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to Cubs87:

    He wants Schwarber, Baez, and Ryan Williams. Seems rich; not sure what a fair deal is for Gray, I'm sure it would be expensive for us

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Not exactly clear wording the article:
    "Imagine a deal where new general manager David Forst shipped his ace, and in return, obtained say shortstop Baez, pitching prospect Ryan Williams, and Schwarber. This might be pushing the envelope just a bit, but for an impact player like Gray, who knows, acquiring one of Baez, Schwarber, or outfielder Jorge Soler might not be out of the question — with an additional two or three prospects of course."

    So what is it? Two (Schwarber, Baez) of the big bats as he states in his first sentence, or one as he states in his second sentence (which he even claims could be pushing it).

    First, Schwarber isn't being moved, for anyone. I would have no issue with giving up one of Baez or Soler, along with other prospects for Gray, but they aren't getting both. Something like Baez/McKinney/Hendricks or Soler/Candelario/Hendricks as a basis seems more reasonable to me.

  • In reply to Zonk:

    "Gray’s declining performance has already begun — questioning his inverted delivery to the plate, as a result of being a “spine-tilting pitcher..Boddy strongly believes that the “Inverted W” can cause an extended elbow release — thus causing an excessive strain on the pitcher’s elbow. This “increased stress” on the anterior band of the ulnar collateral ligament (UCL), which is meant to stabilize the elbow as the forearm follows behind it, has been overused.”. He goes on to mention two pitchers with the same delivery...Mark Prior and Stephen Strasburg.

    In other words there is a high probability his arm is going to fall off in the near future. I'd offer Vogelbach (Schwarber lite), Jimenez (Soler lite), and two prospect pitchers of their choice.

  • In reply to CoconutMeat:

    If they would take Vogelbach anf Jimenez and a couple others the cubs wouldn't even think about it.. they want a trade that they can rid of quantity over quality and gI've up from there depth..

  • In reply to Zonk:

    Cubs won't trade schwarber.

  • fb_avatar

    I do firmly believe the Cubs will land one of: Carrasco or Salazar and also one of: Cashner or Ross(with Ross being the hope)

    I think Hendricks may have to be one to go back in one of the deals which leaves Hammel as our 5

    And I do see Heyward being the big-time signing we go for- definitely checks all the boxes and could step right in as our lead off man and our 1-6 would be pretty terrorizing(Heyward, Russell, Rizzo/Bryant, Rizzo/Bryant, Schwarber, Montero, Baez, Pitcher, LaStella

    This lineup would have La Stella at 2nd, Baez at 3rd and Bryant in right- which I think improves defense to make up for any potential shortcomings as Schwarber plays some left and some C throughout...plus- I think LaStella is the perfect "2nd" leadoff man for a Maddon team...

  • Nice post John.

  • These discussions always center on who we wouldn't mind seeing traded. But the FO discussions are more about what the other team wants.

  • I think keeping either castro or baez is importantyou have to keep one.Baez for his ability to play 3b,ss or 2b and his power.Castro for his ability to play 2b or ss and how he's probably the best contact hitter the cubs have.No way would I trade both and I also don't think soler will be traded unless the cubs can get an offer they can't refuse.

  • We all look in amazement at what Theo & Co. have done over the past four years. They have taken a franchise operating out of construction trailers and filing cabinets and

  • fb_avatar

    I wouldn't trade anyone other than Montero. By all means cut Ross. Have Schwarber and Contreras do the catching. Put Bryant in left, sign Heyward for center and let Fowler walk. Keep Soler in right. Infield of Baez 3b, Russell ss, Castro 2b and Rizzo Infield defense would be tremendous and outfield defense not bad considering the athlete Bryant is and his potential to develop his skills in lf. There is lots of flexibility with these players. Utterly scary line up. Not to mention average age around 24 years old. Bench of Coughlan, Alcantara, Lastella and Jackson. Sign Price. Spend money not talent. Stretch Edwards out to start him. Between Edwards, Hammel and Hendricks spots 4 and 5 should be serviceable and if not bring up Pierce Johnson. Bullpen of Wood, Cahill, Rondon, Strop, Ramirez (health permitting), Grimm and Richard.

  • fb_avatar

    I've stated here before that it really wouldn't surprise me at all to see Schwarber traded. He's an AL player, and I don't say that because of his performance against the Mets, he just seems too one-dimensional for this FO. You could probably get a Gray or a Salazar with Schwarber and little else. By getting one of those in trade rather than spending on Price/Zimmerman, you can buy yourself a mid-level pitcher AND a LF only slightly less offensively capable than Schwarbs, until one of the prospects is ready. Or use the pitcher money on Heyward.

  • In reply to SKMD:

    There are several good to great hitters in the NL in the OF that are below average defensively. Plus Schwarber has some potential upside at catcher which is a premium position. I understand the rational / thought process that all players are currency. I just don't see Schwarber being traded. Power left handed bats with patience to take walks are rare. He is a huge part of the offense.

  • In reply to SKMD:

    You are crazy if you think there getting rid of schwarbs

  • In reply to SKMD:

    If Matt Holliday can play 10 years in the NL, Kyle Schwarber will not have an issue in LF.

  • With all the speculation above, I do not see where anyone has solved center field (though I might well have missed it.) I had assumed Hayward for that role, but I guess he is misplaced there.

    So who end up in center?

  • In reply to Richard Beckman:

    Szczur, Span, Jackson, and possibly Almora later in the year. Fowler if they sign him or he accepts qualifying offer.

  • Just one more time. Baez says he has always played CF when young. Switched to IF because that's where the most action is. Says he wants to play CF. Add Bryant to this mix. With his long legs, speed, arm and ability to get a jump on the ball (remember 3B is called the hot corner for a reason) he would be a great option. Denard Span is just throwing money away. Injured far more often than Soler. Take that money and spend it on a pitcher.

  • John, May I suggest an article on options for a LEAD-OFF MAN???

    The one we had this year(Fowler) was pretty good...but a 4, even 3-year deal is a bit much.

  • fb_avatar

    But if we don't sign Fowler then we need a high OBP TOO player and Baez, as much as I like his power and slowly changing approach to the ball is not that person. Who will fill that roll? I like the idea of getting Hayward but he isn't that player either. Who will lead off
    the first game for the Cubs in 2016?

  • Almora is nowhere near a sure thing. Maybe signing Fowler isn't such a bad idea. Trade him if necessary. He is an excellent, consistent player.

  • In reply to wastrel:

    The only issue for me with re-signing Fowler is the years. Someone us going to give him 5 years, 4 if the market is softer than we think, and those last couple years he'll be a corner outfielder at which point his salary will no match his skills not to mention with the likes of Bryant, Schwarber or any of the others coming there won't be room for him and he won't be tradable. If he would sign for 3/$55 mil you grab him in a heartbeat.

  • Is Denard span will take a small 5 million 1 y ear as a year to prove himself then you grab him quickly.. I don't really like the idea of getting heyward that much.. would be nice but would love to spend the money on 2 arms..

  • In reply to Maddon4Mayor2015:

    I'm amazed by how folks underestimate salaries. Span would cost about $12-$14 million on a one year value rebuild deal. Even in an injury riddled season he was a 1.4 fWAR and salaries roughly correlate to $9 mil per WAR (the higher the WAR this goes down of course) which would put his worth at about $13.5 mil. He might take a little less but $8.5 mil less? C'mon now.

  • In reply to TC154:

    Depends on his medicals. He was 1.4 fWAR last year. Is he going to be healthier or less healthy this coming year? He is getting older too. I don't know how he is going to play next year so I have no idea what he will be worth.

  • Maybe I'm alone in this view, but I don't see Heyward as a huge upgrade over Fowler in CF, and from a $ standpoint, certainly not worth the difference in annual salary and length of commitment.
    1. Age - yes, Fowler is 3+ years older, but at 29, Fowler is in his prime, and should be for a few more years. He's not showing any signs of slowing down; in fact, he was 20/27 in steals this year, his second-best year on the basepaths both in total # of steals and SB percentage.
    2. Offense -- Fowler and Heyward are basically the same player.
    Fowler's career slash line: 267/363/418 (781 OPS)
    Heyward's career slash line: 268/353/431 (784 OPS)
    3. Defense -- Everyone assumes there's a huge gap here, and at first, the numbers suggest this: Fowler's career UZR/150 is -12.1,, while Heyward's is 18.3. But we really have no idea how Heyward is as a centerfielder. He's only played 26 games there in his career - very SSS. (His UZR/150 there is 11.1) Meanwhile, Fowler was certainly adequate for the Cubs this year, both by the eyeball test and by the numbers (-1.9 UZR/150). Fortunately, we play in Wrigley, not Minute Maid or Coors Field.
    4. Overall -- They're both 3.0 oWAR players (Heyward 17.5 over 6 full seasons, and Fowler 20 over 7 full seasons), and I'd argue that we can't predict Heyward's defensive performance in centerfield. We do know, though, that the Braves stuck with Melvin (don't call me B.J.) Upton in CF, rather than trying Heyward there. The Cards preferred Jay, Grichuk and Bourjos to Heyward in CF -- in fairness, all 3 are good CF's, defensively. But Upton -- really?
    Anyway, let's give Dexter his props, and try to re-sign him. Others are free to disagree, and undoubtedly will!

  • In reply to djbk:

    I wouldn't mind bringing dexter back, but preferably on a 2 year that isnt to expensive. .. span may be another option more realistic as a backup if dexter doesn't sign short term.. save the money for the pitching

  • Span on a 1 year deal to rebuild his value for CF.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Not only that but if he does come back strong, then you can QO him and get a draft pick too...win-win situation for everyone involved.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Hmmm . . I'd say thanks but no thanks to Span. I think you have to draw the line somewhere on the age issue, and I'd draw it right about at Span (2 1/2 years older than Fowler):
    1. Injury history -- missed almost 250 games over last 5 years, 100 this year alone -- knee surgery and serious hip problems this year. Ugh.
    2. Defensively, he's been in a steady decline since he came to the Nats. No reason to think he'll reverse that trend in light of age and injuries. Yikes.
    3. Offensively, at least Heyward gives you nice platoon splits vs. RHP, which presumably would be one of the reasons the Cubs want him (although I still don't). Span is pretty much the same batter vs. RHP as vs. LHP. Oof.
    No thanks.

  • In reply to djbk:

    For one year while you sort out what you want to do with the position? I think he's a near perfect fit and while you're right his defense has declined I'd call him about equal to Fowler. Heyward vs Span is not the issue, it's long term vs short term. I'm ok with a long term answer but that means spending less on pitching and trading more assets. Different choices is all. I think they'll make the right ones.

  • In reply to TC154:

    I agree that Heyward vs, Span is not the issue. I was just listing one of the reasons why I don't like Span, and saying that in that one area (platoon splits), he doesn't even provide the benefit that Heyward -- whom I also don't think the Cubs need -- does. The real issue is Fowler vs. 2 players who have been discussed as possible replacements - Heyward and Span. Of the 3,in light of age, cost,probable contract length, etc., I think Fowler makes the most sense. I think we actually agree on what the issues are, but would make different choices -- which is fine!

  • In reply to djbk:

    Fowler is going to want a 4 year deal or so, Cubs wouldn't likely want to give up more than 2, maybe if they both settle for 3 years it could be done but Fowler is worse defensively than Span. None of these options is for their defensive abilities in CF, if we want defense throw Almora out there now, he's been ready on that front since he came into the league. Ont top of Almora, we have other options including a recently signed Cuban who is projected to have a short path (1-2 years) to the majors.

  • In reply to Ghost Dawg:

    Sounds ideal to me...I will be quite pleased if we get draft picks for Fowler and would love to do it in back to back years.

  • Dont get rid of jorge please!!!!

  • All fun to consider. We all love our young players, but the reality of the future is "we need more pitching," our own or someone else's, to continue, our move to the World Series

  • fb_avatar

    Thinking about Schwarber and where he plays. Continue to play him @ Catcher & Outfield AND get him a 1B glove to give Rizzo a breather from time to time. I'm not suggesting a platoon at 1B. just clarifying.

    I hate the idea of Scwarber playing full time behind the plate and feel it will lessen his offense due to nagging injuries.

  • Any chance TB would part with some of their young pitching? Coming off injuries, Moore and Smyly would be good buy-low candidates. Or does losing Maddon still sting them too much to even talk to the Cubs?

  • In reply to CircusSolly:

    No, I think they definitely talk to Tampa Bay. Depending on where they think they are in terms of competing in 2016 it could be a good fit. I don't want any part of Matt Moore though. Smyly or Odorizzi would be interesting names though with Taylor Guerrieri likely up sometime in 2016. His 2014 injury slowed his progress but he'll be 23 in December and he's part of their future.

  • In reply to TC154:

    Good analysis on potential trades for TB pitching . But why not Matt Moore?

  • In reply to springs:

    Moore's recovery from TJ has not been a smooth one. I think he can still be a very, very good pitcher but I don't think he's the kind of risk the Cubs can take in 2016 in a year they are supposed to win. Smyly came back very strong from his shoulder injury and Odorizzi has pitched a lot of solid innings in the last two years and looks like he may be ready to step up. I guess I just see less risk from the latter two than I do from Moore. Then again I'm not privy to the information the FO has so their thoughts on Moore could be different.

  • In reply to TC154:

    Pitcher's frequently come back a little rockie with loss of velocity and control after TJ. That issue usually straightens out with time, so as a buy low candidate why not. Not giving up one of our core pieces but depending on the price I'd take him on.

  • In reply to mikep527:

    I don't disagree and as I said I think Moore is going to be a very good pitcher but I'm sure they'll want an MLB player for him and if the difference between trading for Moore or Odorizzi or Smyly is just a matter of sweetening the prospect side of the package I go that way. If I'm giving up Soler I minimize risk.

  • While I would love some young pitching, I will mention that we did not hit the ball at all in the NLCS. The potential upside of Schwarber, Soler and Bryant is staggering but still uncertain. Russell's future offense is even more unclear -- his numbers this year were great for his age, but it isn't certain he will become a star (Castro's numbers were better at that age, for example). Baez could be the best of the bunch or never make it.

    With all that said, we built a potential behemoth. If these players continue their progression, we will be the best offense in baseball. In that case, a rotation with Lester, Arrieta, Hendricks (who was just a rookie, mind you), Pierce Johnson and a MOR innings eating type pitcher would be fine.

    Trading any of the core now just leaves us vulnerable to trading the wrong player with others not working, thereby weakening our one strength. I compare it to the Garza trade -- we felt great with two top young pitching talents in Archer and McNutt, so trading Archer was fine. As a bad pun, I don't really want us to be left holding just our McNutts again. I'd trade Castro and most anyone in the minors (I'd hold onto Cease or Underwood, Steele or Sands, prefer to hang onto Contreras (though doubt it is viable).

    A deal centered a package that included Castro, and 2-4 of Happ, Edwards Jr., Candelario, Contreras, Torres and Underwood would (I believe) get us most good pitchers that would be traded. Castro, Edwards Jr. and Underwood alone should be sufficient to get Tyson Ross, for example. There isn't a reason to trade our core unless we don't believe they will make it. I believe they will so would prefer to trade from minor league depth.

  • In reply to springs:

    Hey I'm with you, I'd much rather give up minor league depth for pitching, the problem is I don't think that gets that done. Castro might get you Ross but he's a FA at the same time Arrieta is. That may or may not be an issue. In terms of potential targets being discussed Carlos Carrasco and Drew Smyly are controlled until 2019, Julio Teheran and Carlos Carrasco until 2020 and Danny Salazar until 2021. Any of those guys would probably take Soler or Baez as opposed to Castro but the extra years and there are options where those guys play. Catchers are always valuable but I don't see anyway they trade Conteras. I think he splits time with Montero in 2017 and takes over in 2018. I don't think they have another option there at that kind of const control. I think Schwarber plays there some but he's not ever going to be a an everyday catcher.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to TC154:

    I've sadly come to the conclusion that you may be right and Soler may be traded. Simply because I think he is the guy who other teams are going to demand. I hope they spend money instead.

  • Right handed power corner outfielders with good pitch recognition are easier to come by than similar left handed power corner ones. For every Schwarber, there is half a dozen Solers. Most MLB teams(Cubs too) have more than one option to fill that role. If Jed can get a pitcher of Salazar or Carrasco quality from the Indians, he won't hesitate because those opportunities are infrequent. Twenty nines teams would grab one like Schwarber.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    29 teams would and that's why the Cubs will not. He is too rare of a package.

  • Why does everyone want to trade off Soler and Schwarber? This team just exceeded expectations with these players and the scary thing is, like most of you have said, they haven't even reached their true potential. I understand we need pitching, but there are other means to acquire that than trading off our home-grown talent. Soler, Schwarber, Bryant, Russell, Rizzo, Baez, and Castro are all here and are going to mash and continue to improve on their weaknesses. I can't wait to see what they can do for us instead of trading them off and watching them tear it up for an opposing team against us.

  • In reply to JCubby:

    Soler is the only one along with one of Baez/Castro, that I could see as possible trades. With Bryant likely moving to the OF, kinda leaves you with one too many corner OFs. Having one of these guys regularly on the bench is less valuable than something else we could put in as an every day player or rotation help. If they believe Schwarbs could truly stay at catcher, then you might keep Soler. Soler for Teheren, is an interesting prospect, two guys who had down years in 2016 that could both bounce back big. Nothing is set in stone but likely to solve some holes we would have to deal from our excess. At this point there's nothing to do but talk trades on here.

  • In reply to JCubby:

    I really don't think anyone "wants" to trade Soler or Schwarber, but to get true quality you have to be willing to give up quality. You could get less impactful pitchers by giving up less impactful players in return, but I think most are hoping for a difference maker in the rotation. Your suggestion of "other means" must refer to free agency which I imagine will be seriously pursued. The problem is that you have to over pay in most cases by a lot which can handicap you later on. Last off season there were opportunities for more reasonable deals after the top pitchers were taken, and this year with the large number of quality starting pitching available there might be something good available after the first big rush.

  • In reply to Cphil:

    The Cubs do not need Greinke or Price "for a difference maker." Any decent pitcher who can go seven innings would make a huge difference. Two of them would be twice as huge. The 3 and 4 spots in the rotation improve. The bullpen improves. Lester and, especially, Arrieta improve since they would no longer face the added pressure of saving the bullpen on top of the pressure to win.

  • In reply to JCubby:

    First off, Schwarber isn't going anywhere. The only guy I think they'd even discuss him for is Sonny Gray, a pitcher they covet badly, but even there I don't see them moving him. That kid is likely the best of all these hitters. Beyond that I think what you're seeing and hearing is speculation based on what Theo has said himself. They developed and drafted these players in the way they did in order to stockpile hitters they could trade for pitching. In order to accelerate the rebuild they drafted hitters because pitchers not only take longer but come with much more injury risk. Even if at worst case scenario to get the players they want they trade two of Castro, Baez and Soler they still have the solid core of Russell, Bryant, Schwarber and Rizzo along with one of those other players. I was a little surprised when I heard Heyward being mentioned as a Cubs target but he really fits right in with these guys in terms of type of player and age. Like most of the other players he also has positional flexibility. With their philosophy it makes much more sense to sign a hitter than a risky 30 year old pitcher instead trading for pitching.

  • In reply to TC154:

    Definitely could see them signing Heyward and then trading surplus position players for young controllable pitching. If they sign Heyward, that player probably is Soler.

  • In reply to MoneyBall:

    Yes. If he's signed and Soler is dealt I see him playing mostly CF next year using Bryant in RF most of the time while watching Almora in AAA. He's ready defensively by all accounts. Maybe by playoff time next year he's an option in CF with Heyward manning RF most of the time. You probably pick up a low cost 4th OF type that can play CF as well. An upgrade over Szczur if you will.

  • In reply to TC154:

    Why move Bryant to RF?

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to MoneyBall:

    Good question. I guess in that scenario Baez is the starting third baseman? Yuk.

  • In reply to Cubs Win 009:

    Well if Castro or Soler is dealt next year you figure Baez is a starter at 2B or 3B depending right? Despite what he showed in the NLCS he's a solid defender and just as a capable as being a stud bat as any of the rest of them. If you sign Heyward and Almora isn't ready, and no one thinks he will be, who do you play in CF? My biggest concern in the Heyward scenario, once Almora is up, is that it keeps Bryant at 3B long term when I think he's a corner OF ultimately.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to TC154:

    Baez projections for 2016 is an OBP of less than .300 and a OPS in the .600. Now take that for what it's worth, but that is a significant drop off from Bryant. Jason Heyward is projected to have an OPS of less than Soler is projected, and Soler is younger and cheaper. So you want to sign Heyward for $150M, move him out of position, move Bryant out of position, and lessen the team's offense? Why not instead just dig a little deeper and pay for some pitching? So $180m instead of $150m.

  • In reply to TC154:

    Well I think Baez is going to be a whole lot better than that don't you? In 80 PA this year in MLB he was .289/.325/.408 and I think he'll get better still. I think you're looking for a place for him to play every day. If the Cubs aren't thinking that way then you've got an entirely different scenario.

  • In reply to Cubs Win 009:

    I would probably prefer Baez at 2nd Base and trade Castro.

  • Castro,Edwards and underwood for tyson ross who will be 29 in april is an absolutely ridiculous trade proposal.No way would the cubs do that maybe if craig kimbrel was included but for just ross? No way

  • In reply to bolla:

    Given that Ross will be a free agent in two years I agree. I also would not want to trade underwood.

  • fb_avatar

    Here's what Jed Hoyer said last Friday: “At that moment in time (prior to the trade deadline), we looked at it and made some super-aggressive offers involving a lot of our prospects for guys that we would control past this year. We felt like it was worth giving up a lot of prospects if we could control the guy in 2016 and maybe even in 2017 and we weren’t that aggressive on the rental market." So no team was willing to take their "super-aggressive" offer. Does that change in the offseason? Maybe, I don't know. I know if I were running a team, I would be very resistant to trade a quality pitcher for an everyday player. Yes, "pitchers get hurt." But pitching also wins in the playoffs. So if I was going to give up a pitcher, I would expect a lot in return. Bottomline for me: although a trade may be preferable, I think the Cubs better be prepared to spend some serious money, because that may be their only real option. The rumor our here is that the Giants plan to sign Leake and make a very serious run a Grienke. They had a $170M payroll last year, and plan to add to it. How serious are the Cubs?

  • In reply to Cubs Win 009:

    I do think the Cubs could go after a pitcher like Price, or Heyward. Doubt they get both. For those concerned about extending guys, keep in mind that our big TV contract hits in 2019. Heard Theo once said that was the year he planned on stepping on the rest of the division's throats.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to mikep527:

    I sort of understand the logic behind Heyward, but only to a point. Spending $150M or so on a right fielder when the team is flush with position players doesn't seem like the smartest move to me. Draft everyday players and either trade them for pitching or sign FA pitchers. That's what I would do.

  • In reply to Cubs Win 009:

    I agree on this thought process. Are the Cubs a big market team or what? That doesn't mean spend money foolishly. If the demands hamstring the organization for years to come and just don't make sense, then don't do it.

    But to act like this team does not have resources to make a big splash does not make sense to me given the current payroll and expected future increases in revenue.

  • In reply to Cubs Win 009:

    Well, for starters they aren't going to go up to $170 mil in 2016. They were at roughly $120 mil this year and while Gordon Wittenmyer reported that they'd go up to $130 for 2016 I'd bet that number is closer to $150. With arbitration estimates that gives them about $45 million to spend this offseason and they need at least one starter, a CF and some outfield depth to replace Denorfia. That's before you make any trades. It's going to be awfully tough to get all that done at $45 mil. My feeling all along is that you sign a starter, trade for another and then find a CF solution. Span would likely solve the CF issue on a 1 year deal but then you'd have to sign maybe 2 starters and that gets costly for now and the future because pitchers are overpays by the end of their contracts. You can bank on it. That's where Heyward would come in because even if you had to go to 8 years you'd likely get your money out of that deal. This is a balancing act for sure. Would anyone want to be Theo or Jed right now?

  • In reply to TC154:

    I would like to be Theo and earn $3M a year with more to come to manage a kid game. Yes, I would.

    Not saying you are wrong but how do you know that the payroll is not going to $170 million next year?

  • still believe one of the Core will be traded. Not sure which one; thank goodness that's not MY job, and I'm sure there's several nerds right now beating the hell out of Ivy (the computer app; not the plant) to come up with the projections for Bryant, Rizzo, Soler, Baez, Schwarber, Castro, and Russell. One will be gone for a TOR guy. I have three untouchables out of the seven. I'm sure mine don't agree with yours, but I will say Rizzo is one of them.

  • In reply to Rob Letterly:

    So which 3 are they?

  • fb_avatar

    I wonder what trade value cohglan might have. Might not bring back a top starter but could bring back the depth starter.

    Also with span it sounds like he is getting a qualifying offer. So it would reason that he needs more than 1/15.8 to get him out of Washington

  • I'm not trading Schwarber or Bryant.
    They're gonna be 40 HR guys soon.

    If Mike Trout becomes available, then ok.
    I don't trade either one for Harper because I think he's a jerk.

  • I can live with Schwarber's defense. Do not want to see Soler traded. Find pitching another way, through free agency...trading others.

  • I don't understand the beating of the drums by everyone to trade any of these young players.
    How much money did the Cubs add by having the 4 extra playoff games at home this year? Chances are they will also have more than 81 games at Wrigley next year as well......
    BUY a pitcher or 2 and put a new rookie in CF if Fowler goes.....our offense is potent enough without taking on a crazy contract like what Heyward's will be and we could absorb the one year learning curve of Almora or even Alcantara.

  • In reply to Wickdipper:

    Really wish we had a DH for Schwarber. Swapping him for the pitcher makes our lineup a true nightmare. Then Soler could play left and Bryant in right. Just need this year's version of Fowler to continue for a few yeas.

  • In reply to mgoodw2:

    Kyle would be insulted if he were shipped to the 'you can be half a ballplayer league' when he has already made inroads at two positions as a in the real baseball player league.

Leave a comment