Cubs Sign Catcher Chris Gimenez To Minor League Deal

The Cubs have added a candidate to battle Victor Caratini for the back up catcher role. Chris Cotillo of SB Nation reported the Cubs have signed Chris Gimenez to a minor league deal.

Gimenez debuted with the Indians in 2009 and has played for the Rays, Rangers, Mariners and most recently the Twins. The .218 career hitter (with a more impressive .309 OBP) is thought of as a defense first backstop. He threw out 30% of attempted base stealers last season. Ken Rosenthal reports Gimenez will get a chance to compete for the backup job with Caratini.

The signing likely ends any chance Alex Avila had of returning to Chicago. Gimenez caught for the Rays from 2012-13 under manager Joe Maddon and pitching coach Jim Hickey and worked with potential Cubs target Alex Cobb. It's another Gimenez connection, however, that has gained the most attention with his addition.

Many have already started to ask if this signing is similar to David Ross coming in as Jon Lester's personal catcher in 2015. Frankly it's too soon to know. It's just as likely his connection to Maddon and Hickey is the reason he was added. In an off-season as slow as this one it's likely to fuel rampant speculation.

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  • Stop me, didn't the Cubs sign a certain back up catcher named David Ross who became a fan favorite just before signing the big FA of the year, Jon Lester?

  • In reply to rnemanich:

    I actually immediately thought of this too and I looked it up out of curiosity, and I believe that Ross actually signed about two weeks after Lester did.

    But, I think the same concept applies here. I don't think the Cubs sign Gimenez without knowing something...

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    In reply to Average Samaritan:

    Ross signed after Lester. I remember reports that Ross had signed with SD only to have him come out and refute the reports in a way that came across as awkward. And then, a couple days later, he signed with the Cubs. In some ways it was kind of like when Fowler was reported to have signed with the Orioles and suddenly showed up in Cubs camp.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    from today's Trib:

    Chris Gimenez, a back-up catcher for the Twins who signed a minor league deal with the Cubs, told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune he’d joked with Darvish recently about being a “package deal” on the free agent market. Gimenez previously caught Darvish in Texas.

  • Hello Yu Darvish.

  • I’ve seen this script before. Can we call him grandpa?

  • In reply to Cubswin09:

    Maybe Uncle..., because there’s only 1 Grandpa in recent Cub lore. ;o)

  • Get Darvish already. Let’s end this. Let’s go win another one. Let’s go!!!!!!!!!’nn

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    Chris and Yu and we win too.

  • They are already in talks according to BN’s source. I bet Brewers got wind & tried to up the price, thus being that latest “mystery” team... Could be a formidable rotation this year. MCGA!

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    AP sources have told the NY Times the Cubs and Darvish are now in "active talks". With all the details coming out in the last couple days, from the Brewers making a formal offer to the report of a five-year deal on the table, it already felt like something was about to go down. Now this...

    I'll add that Gimenez is highly respected and coming off a couple solid seasons the last few years. It seems as though he could have taken a minor-league deal with pretty much any team in baseball, yet chose the Cubs. I get the Maddon/Hickey connection, but everything just sort of lines up with Darvish.

  • Purely hypothetical...

    Let's assume that the dots connect, and Darvish indeed ends up pitching on the North Side...

    Is there a more formidable playoff rotation than some sort of combination of Lester-Darvish-Q-Hendricks?

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    In reply to Average Samaritan:

    Verlander-Keuchel-Cole-McCullers

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Verlander obviously had a magical post-season, but who knows how that 35-year-old arm holds up this season. Including the post-season, another 240 inning year for him.

    Keuchel was 9-0 with a 1.67 ERA in the first half of the year; 5-5 with a 4.24 ERA in the second half of the year, and only had 1 good (out of 5) post season starts.

    Cole has posted back-to-back mediocre seasons. Not sure he's anything more than a middle of the rotation arm (even though he has top end stuff).

    The verdict is still out on McCullers. Obviously a very talented arm, but he was pretty bad since returning from injury last year. Wasn't very effective as a starter in the post-season. Still easily a #5 on our team.

  • In reply to Average Samaritan:

    McCullers reminds me of Steve Stone. Great curve, but like Stone hes throwing a bunch of them and hos arm is likely to get sore anytime.

  • In reply to Average Samaritan:

    Severino, Gray, Tanaka, Stanton

  • In reply to good4you:

    I almost snorted out milk reading that.

  • In reply to Average Samaritan:

    You never know how Chatwood is going to do. It has been a couple years since his TJS and he is gettingstronger and better. He just might end up in the top 4 of the rotation.

  • That’s good. But I’d say Max Scherzer, Stephen Strasburg, Tanner Roark, and Gio Gonzalez is better.

  • In reply to Cubswin09:

    Scherzer and Strasburg is absolutely better than anything we have. However, we are still deeper than they are. Would you really rather have a Roak or Gonzalez in a game that matters over any of our guys?

  • In reply to Average Samaritan:

    So OK, let's assume it's Darvish, Q, Hendricks, Lester against Scherzer, Strasburg, Gonzales, Roark and it's a playoff series. The nats would be favorites in game 1 & 2 whether those games were in chicago or Washington. Probably heavy favorites in Washington. So say that's right and you're down 2-0 going into game 3 of an NLCS and it's Gonzales-Hendricks. That would be a push n terms of favorites but realistically Washington will be tasting blood at that point and the Cubs would be at a disadvantage. If you're then down 3-0 Roark is a pretty good pitcher to have on the mound Lester or no Lester. Sorry but I take Washington's rotation every time. That said I think that with Darvish the Cubs have the second best rotation in the NL just above Arizona and you can't do anything about who the Nats have at the top at this point.

  • In reply to TC154:

    Didn’t the Cubs beat the Nationals this past October...? I think both have good offenses, but the Cubs have a bettter defense. Also with a betterSchwarber & 1 more year under Javy, Russell’s, Almora, Happ’s belts w/a renewed resurgence by the vets w/no WS hangover, I like the Cubs chances much better. Closer is the only “?” as of now. But if it’s not answered in house 1st half, they will address it at deadline.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    The Nationals had Dusty Baker, he's a champion killer. I still think Washington is by far and away the best team in the NL, but Darvish certainly puts the Cubs closer.

  • In reply to TC154:

    I agree the Nat’s rotation gets a ever so slight edge & w/your point on Baker... ha ha. Cubs pitching keeps those games against their top 2 SPs close enough not to pencil the W on those 1st 2 games. And I think the Cubs have the “winning team” experience about them that the Nats just don’t seem to possess. Remains to be seen if their new mgr can change that or not. And the Cubs are just getting better (if Darvish signs) w/Theo/Jed’s moves.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    Only a slight edge because of Scherzer & Strasburg. I like the Cubs OA depth better.

  • In reply to TC154:

    I would put my money on either the Dodgers or the Cubs over the Nats. Nats don't have what it takes and a rookie manager isn't going to get it done.

  • In reply to TC154:

    The Cubs also had Maddon as their manager so I would call the a wash.

  • In reply to 2016 Cubs:

    Maddon, you mean probably the third best manager in the game after Bruce Bochy and Terry Francona? Ok.

  • In reply to TC154:

    I'd say Maddon is the 4th or 5th best manager in the division as far as managing the game. As far as in the club house he is one of the best keeping the team loose, confident and positive.

  • In reply to TC154:

    2016 Cubs, your opinion is an outlier but of course you are entitled to it. Pretty much every list compiled has him in the top 3 or so and he's been one of my favorites for a decade. As far as the division Mike Matheny is one of the worst in the game as is Bryan Price and Clint Hurdle is fair to middling. I like Craig Counsell but remind me when he wins something.

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    In reply to TC154:

    I’ll just mention that Maddon is 3-0 in postseason series against Francona and Bochy.

  • In reply to TC154:

    I wouldnt discount the Dodgers. Everything Ive read about Walker Buehler says the Dodgers like him more than they liked Dravish, and Urias will be back sometime this season.

  • I think if Darvish does sign with the Cubs the Twin’s brass will be in hot water for letting Gimenez walk.

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    In reply to good4you:

    I don't think the Twins were every that likely to sign Darvish. I am very much in Twins country and their fans can rightly point to a long history of not signing top FA and letting good players walk. Signing Darvish was never in the cards for them and I was surprised to see them "linked" to him.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    Likely not. They had the space and the money and were a surprise Wild Card last season, so ideas began forming.

    Cub fan in St. Paul here. You?

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    In reply to MN Exile:

    North Dakota. Still very much Twins country (though the Cubs/Yankees are neck-and-neck for 2nd most popular team...the Rockies are still too "new" though they are closer).

    Minnesota has the money to sign someone like Darvish. They just don't usually "pony-up" for a FA. If they sign a big contract is it usually extending a local favorite such as Joe Mauer, Kirby Puckett--not that these two aren't really good players as well. I honestly don't remember the last time they made a "splash" FA signing.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    Ervin Santana, if you call a 4/48 contract a splash.

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    In reply to mutant beast:

    I don't consider it a splash. But I suppose that could be debated.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    I think the Twins still have a very good chance of signing Darvsh.

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    In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    How come?

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    GM has a relationship, they have the money, not close to the luxury tax and are a playoff contender with a need for a starter.

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    In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    OK. Thanks for the response.

    1. GM has a relationship. Yes. But several GMs have relationships with Darvish. Including some teams that are on the list of "interested" teams, such as the Texas Rangers. And, by the way, the Rangers are as likely or more likely to spend money.

    2. Not close to the luxury tax. This is also true. However, most of the other "pursuing teams" also have room under the luxury tax.

    3. Are a playoff contender. To me this one is debateable. They won wild card this year (and kudos to them) but they are also coming off being, arguably, the worst team in baseball the year before. And there is nothing obvious to point to for the improvement on anything like the scale of the Cubs improvement in 2015 when they also added Jon Lester, Kris Bryant, Addison Russell, Miguel Montero/David Ross and a full season from Javier Baez and Kyle Hendricks. IMO Minnesota caught lightning in a bottle last year. They rode it for all it was worth. They have some talented players but not anywhere near what the other playoff teams had. But that is just my opinion.

    4. With a need for a starter. That can be said for, literally, EVERY MLB team. None of them would list "sufficient starting pitching" on their list of "strengths." Even when an outside observer might point out that a team is "just fine" when it comes to starting pitching.

    To me the biggest factor is that their owner has never shown any interest in signing players off of FA, or at least "splash" signings. Remember, in 2009 the Twins won their division (not just WC) and in their off-season they signed: Yorman Bazardo, Jeff Bailey, Chuck James, Matthew Brown, Rene Rivera, Steve Holm, Jim Thome, and Carl Pavano. Not the most illustrious group. Thome put together a very good season but the contract he signed was for $1.5M for 2010. Pavano signed a 3-year/$23.5M contract. And this was after players started getting inflated contracts for pitching (see his prior contract with the Yankees).

    And there were good players available that off-season. Cliff Floyd, Adrian Beltre, Carl Crawford, Jason Werth, Lance Berkman. Obviously not all these guys worked out great. For instance, Berkman was solid for the Cardinals on a not extravagant contract. Adrian Beltre was good in 2010, was good in 2011, and has been good since then as well. Jason Werth has had some solid seasons.

    Now, the one significant difference between the Twins in 2010 and the Twins of 2017 is that they now have a new GM and he is most statistically savvy. Maybe that will make a difference. But my guess is that he is still working for the same owner who will not want to fork out that much money for a single, aging pitcher.

    But I may be wrong. But if I am a Twins fan I am not holding my breath on the signing of Darvish.

    FWIW, I don't know that Darvish signs with the Cubs either. Both sides have something to gain from a "long narrative, no finish" type scenario. Darvish can use "The Cubs" as a way to milk as much as possible out of other "large market" teams such as Texas. Or even parlay it into a bigger offer from Milwaukee hoping to "steal" a signing from a division rival. And Milwaukee has as bright, or brighter, future than the Twins, IMO.

    The Cubs can agree to be linked to Darvish to improve their leverage with guys like Cobb ("If you think you have us over-a-barrel just remember, we have the cash to put into other players who might be better than you") and/or possibly make a team like Milwaukee (or someone else) overpay for Darvish in terms of AAV or years and, possibly, crippling their ability to make other improvements in upcoming years. All at zero cost to them if they don't like Darvish's asking price.

    Then there is the media. They are just reporting what they are hearing. But are likely to "like" the sound of Darvish to the Cubs. Afterall, the Cubs are famously looking for a front-line starting pitcher, have money to spend at this point, and have a HUGE fan base willing to click on links to articles purporting information on "Cubs discussing contract with Darvish." Not to be cynical or say they are making this up. Nor that Cubs fans are particularly gullible to click on these links. But there are reasons, significant and real reasons, to have to at least acknowledge the possibility that there is little or nothing there for a "Cubs sign Darvish" type story in the next couple days.

    Not saying that this is what is going on. Just pointing out the possibility that this is just a mutually agreed upon smoke-screen.

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    I am not big on reading tea leaves and trying to make connections. This certainly wouldn't "hurt" their chances with Darvish but I think that it might be reading too much into it to speculate that this means the Cubs will sign Darvish.

    To me even if they DON'T sign Darvish there isn't much down side to this deal.

    1. It is a minor league deal. He isn't assured of a 25-man roster spot (as far as I know) and he doesn't even take any room on the 40-man roster

    2. Having a defense first back-up C is certainly not a bad thing. While he has never put up huge numbers he has been a net positive over his career in terms of fWAR if only marginally.

    3. It gives the Cubs another option for back up C if they decide that Caratini needs more time to hone his skills behind the plate without having to lay out millions and millions of dollars.

    4. If they decide to go with Caratini as their back-up C then Gimenez will simply go to Iowa, presumably, and maybe help the Cubs prospects there.

    Honestly, the only way I could like this deal much more would be if he were an offensive force--though that is unnecessary in the back-up C for me. Or, more important to me, if he were a LH hitter.

    But, hey, you can't have it all. I like this signing.

  • I agree, the Cubs would likely be better 1-4. Although if I had a choice, i’d take the Nats rotation.

  • Too bad this cuts us out of signing Alex Avila.

    I know he probably wanted a pretty hefty contract (for a backup), but we could have used the OBP and left-handedness that he brought to the table.

  • In reply to DetroitCubFan:

    They could still Sign Avilla

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    In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    You're right. Because this is a minor league deal it, in no way, precludes them from signing Avila.

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    Technically yes. Highly doubt it though... Yes it’s a minor league deal but I think he proves himself in spring training. Doubt he accepts assignment to Iowa.

    Signing Avila depends on whether they have the wiggle room under the luxury cap that they desire is there after signing a SP &/or a closer. If it’s Cobb they sign, then I could see it. But not sure how much PT those catchers will get w/Contreras here. Gimenez is a multi position guy, but he’s RHed bat & not a very good hitter. He’s a good back up catcher, that’s why I feel he makes the club.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    Gimenez is not that good and they aren't close to luxury tax

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    If they sign Darvish or Arrieta they will be close...

  • So if Darvish is a real possibility for the Cubs, what would he asking price be?

    I'm guessing in the $25M per year range, for as many years as he can get.

    Bigger question is would a deal like that violate Theo's philosophy of "not paying for past performance"?

  • In reply to DetroitCubFan:

    I think it will take 5 years

  • I think Joel nailed it. Worst case, Gimenez is an upgrade on Taylor Davis and a veteran influence in AAA. Best case he tips the scales as Darvish is clearly picking his home on factors beyond money, and Theo learned how to play that game in the Ohtani quest.
    Darvish would net about 2 WAR over the current Fangraphs projections with Montgomery as a starter, assuming he then slots into the bullpen. If we whiff on Darvish, there is still budget to add at least 1 WAR by bumping Caratini and La Stella off the 25 and picking up Avila or Lucroy and another arm that can go multiple innings, such as Cahill. As long as Darvish stays out of the NL Central, Cubs currently project as favorites by about 4 games, but the stress of the 2017 race took its toll in the postseason and the team needs to be constructed to cruise in order to get past WAS, LAD, and HOU. Either we acquire the WAR in one stop with Darvish (or Jake/Cobb), or we can shop at Filene's Basement and pick up a couple of pillows.

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    It's a good signing but not may not be the determining factor for Yu. Remember that the Dodgers traded Kershaw's personal catcher and he did alright and they almost won the WS. It would be a comfort for Yu to have him here and I hope that the Cubs do sign him. I was looking forward to see Caratini up for the season because he does have skills and his OBP was amazing in Aug and Sept (.438 and .381). It's still a possibility that he'll contribute during the season too.

  • fb_avatar

    I just had a comment swallowed by the admin. Please help. thanks.

  • Jesse Rogerspoints out that there’s also a Gimenez/Cobb connection as well...

  • Would the Cubs offer more years if that's the market on Darvish? Would they offer more if the Brewers are? That is offer more than their assessed value disregarding their paying for past performace issue.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Good questions! For me, my ideal choice would be Cobb at three years. Second choice would be Darvish at four. Cobb at four or Darvish at five, I am less keen.

    You're bullish on Yelich, right? There's a rumor that the Brewers just made an offer. If they were to add Yelich and Darvish they could be pretty darn good.

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    In reply to Cubswin09:

    The Darvish rumor just sounds too much like BS to scare the Cubs. Yelich sounds legit though. That would be all kinds of bad and exactly the kind of deal they could (and should) make.

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    In reply to Cubswin09:

    And in complete fairness, the Cubs and Darvish are actively talking rumor could be a dog whistle to Cobb: "Stop this and sign. Now." It's though to know what's legit and what is smoke at this point.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    Yelich would be an awesome trade for them. He is a proven player with plenty of "team control" at a very team-friendly contract. And the Brewers have enough minor league talent to make the kind of offer that the Marlins might jump at.

    Seriously, if I am the Brewers I am all over this.

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    In reply to Joel Mayer:

    I would think a Brinson package could get it done and with Yelich, Brinson is a lot less useful to them.

  • In reply to Cubswin09:

    Ouch! Yelich to Brewers.

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    In reply to 44slug:

    My guess on if they would add more years to get Darvish signed: No. I don't think so. He is a very good pitcher. But he is not THAT good. While the Cubs would clearly be better with him in 2018 than without him I don't think they take the chance on losing even more talented players in the upcoming years (FA and re-signing some of their own guys) just to get Darvish.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    Thanks for your input Joel. Mike, and 09 too.

  • Forget about the top 3 FA pitchers and Harper. Signing fairly
    young quality FA and don't give up draft picks. We have 4

    draft picks before the 3d pick. Signing Rizzo, Bryant, Baez
    to long term extentions should be our main goal.

  • I think some team will blink on Darvish and offer 5 years. I think Milwaukee would be one team that might. This may force Theo’s hand. The tapering offer, frontloaded for 3 years is probably in play. Personally, Darvish is not my choice. I would rather go with Montgomery and Chatwood, add Albers in relief and pick up a quality starter midseason. But I think Theo may be -laying defense now because if Milwaukee bought Darvish and traded for Yelich, the Cubs are no longer the best team in the Division. He probably cannot outbid them on Yelich, but he can on Darvish or Jake.

  • In reply to Swarf:

    I'm a bit ambivalent about signing Darvish specifically, but I do hope the Cubs add one more SP (Cobb? Arrieta? Darvish? even someone like Lynn?). The reason I prefer this route is that it only costs the Cubs $. Adding a quality starter at midseason will cost the Cubs players and they are getting to the point where they will be robbing Peter to pay Paul that way since their minor league system doesn't contain a lot of value to other teams.

  • Mooney said cubs are focused on darvish and arrieta returning is a long shot(thank goodness)

    There's an insider on brewers forum that called the brewers yelich offer days ago who claims darvish is signing with the cubs.

  • In reply to bolla:

    why would an insider on a brewer's forum know what Darvish is doing? Everyone who says they know what Darvish and the Cubs are doing are just guessing. The only ones who know are Darvish and the Cubs.

  • If the Cubs sign Darvish and the Brewers trade fro Yelich and maybe sign Lynn or Cobb what does that make the Cardinals do? Right now the three of them are bunched at the top but those deals clearly put St. Louis in third place. Sign Holland and Hosmer?

  • In reply to TC154:

    I don’t know if they’ll be reactionary to what the Cubs & Brewers do. And I guess it depends on what they need most. I’m not worried about them getting Holland.
    or Hosmer... But if they get Machado & a ToR starter I’d be a little bit more worried. I think the Cubs will be division winners even as is. It’s a matter of having the fire power to win in the post season.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    One year of Machado would cost them Reyes. That would be crazy but more power to them. Might make them dangerous this year but would cost them for several. He's not signing there. To me they need a closer desperately but it seems like they would be more likely to look at Arrieta or bring back Lynn. Right now I think it's a three team pick 'em for the division. the Cubs have the most talent but baseball is a gonna baseball and the other two are within striking distance. Cubs get Darvish and I'd give them the edge over the other two.

  • In reply to TC154:

    I don’t think it’s much of a pick em. The division was ripe for the picking last year & both St Louis & Milwaukee couldn’t do it. This year, division wise, will be like 2016 for Cubs & that’s with their roster as is. Arrieta or Darvish & a Machado would make Cards dangerous but not a favorite. Darvish or Arrieta & Yelich would be same for Brewers. Cubs at a minimum probably add Cobb plus barring trade, they will have all of their best offensive/defensive weapons from last year.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    I agree, the Cubs have an advantage on the Brewers and Cards with the three probably coming in the same order as last year. The Cards are a third place team and they are going to have to get used to it.

  • In reply to John57:

    Couldn't the team landing Darvish change that order?

  • The longer this goes on the more I think sides might be playing each other... Maybe. Prior to his trade to the Dodgers, the Cubs were on Darvish’s no trade list. Maybe he’s teasing the Cubs to get a better deal from LA or TX... or Cubs are in it to drive up his price in case a St Louis tries to jump in... &/or to feign interest in him to get Cobb to sign now... Orrrrr, has he changed his mind & is really willing to sign w/Cubs. Ha ha!

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    It was reported at the time that his no-trade list hadn't been updated since 2014 so I don't put any stock in that. I think he wanted to be a Yankee or Dodger and neither is happening because of luxury tax concerns. We know he has an offer from Milwaukee, we know the Cubs are actively negotiating and today JP Morosi reports that that Twins are still in and that Darvish will sign this week. Unless he really wants to be in a small market, which is possible but belies what we know about his interest in NY and LA, or this means he's just trying to get the Cubs best offer. I think he signs tomorrow.

  • In reply to TC154:

    He may have wanted it the same. But if the Dodgers & Yankees don’t budge, there’s still the Rangers sitting there. Possibly a “mystery” team like the Cardinals waiting for the right moment as well. We won’t know until he finally signs...

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    That might be a fall back for Darvish but it makes no sense for the Rangers. They're no better than the fourth best team in that division with him or without him. Why would you carry a $160 mil payroll for that? The off chance that the Astros, Mariners and Rangers all have serious injuries? I've just never bought the Rangers as a real option.

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    All team's pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training in 3 weeks or less.

  • In reply to Ray:

    Can’t wait... With the exception of a few trades & FA signings this hot stove has barely lit up this year...

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    In reply to Milk Stout:

    Cannot disagree.

  • Congratulations to Javier Baez and his longtime girlfriend Irmarie Marquez on the announcement of the expectation of their first child, who I will be bold enough to dub "El pequeno mago".

    I can't help but to envision Javy and his glove in the delivery room, a la Buster Posey in the Esurance commercial, ready for action! If so, the child will be in good hands.

    Go Cubs!

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    In reply to BarleyPop:

    Great call BP. I can just imagine.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Hopefully a few less bobbles on the catch than that piece of gum during the playoffs a year or 2 ago

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    The latest HOF class was just announced. Trevor Hoffman, Vlad Guerrero, Clipper Jones and Jim Thome got in.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    I'm cool with that. I agree with all 4 in my admittedly Small Hall, although I would rather face Hoffman than Billy Wagner if my life depended on making contact.

    Congratulations to all the new Hall members! I honor and respect you all.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    Need to get Bonds and Clemens in along with the other elite players from the "ped" era

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    In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    I don’t want those 2 in but look at Billy Wagner’s stats and he is HOF worthy to me.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    Why wouldn't you want the all time HR leader and one of the greatest starters ever?
    A great case can be made for Wagner.

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    Cheaters don’t belong, get used to it.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    Baseball didn't care when they were playing - why do you care now?

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    You mean Selig & certain owners didn’t care... The non cheaters cared. And if Baseball didn’t care, then why the ffffudge did they ban them?

    It’s not whether I care or not... Any Hall of Fame loses credibility when they let known cheaters in.

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    In reply to Milk Stout:

    Just out of curiosity, the MLB HOF has lost credibility with you--by your definition Gaylord Perry, at the very least, cost it that credibility--why do you care one way or the other who is let in or not let in?

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    Apples - oranges... It’s not me that’s not letting those guys in. It’s the committee.

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    In reply to Milk Stout:

    But your post was about a HOF losing credibility. My point is why do you care about a HOF that has lost credibility? Not whether you are the one that "let these guys in" or not. The cat is out of the bag on that one. The HOF has lost credibility. Fine. Then don't worry about whether a player cheated or not. Or is in the HOF or not.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    No. The post was about your claim that Baseball didnt care. When obviously they did by banning an already illegal drug when obtained & used w/out a prescription. Followed by the committee & non cheaters not voting them in.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    Don't you think baseball do very little to stop usage?
    They didn't put in rules to stop usage.
    They put in limited testing
    They took their time putting in penalties.
    The outrage should have been during the time they were setting records or winning MVP's. The owners, commissioner, trainers, sports writers and players union all looked the other way as they all profited.

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    In reply to Milk Stout:

    Just a point of clarification: I didn't claim that "Baseball didn't care." But that is nit-picking and not really relevant.

    Second, what is the point of "banning an illegal drug when obtained and used without a prescription." If something is "illegal" it is, therefore, against the law. Baseball has no reason to waste there time banning illegal activity. But that is being argumentative.

    My response was to your specific comment that the HOF loses credibility when it allows in cheaters. As far as I am concerned that question still stands. Your comments regarding it have been

    (a) it isn't relevant because you didn't let them in but the committee did. Fine. Then the HOF has STILL lost its credibility with you. Not because you let them in or someone else did. The fact is that there are cheaters in the HOF. Where do you draw the line of when it was OK to let them in and when it is not OK to let them in in terms of "credibility."

    (b) Committee and non-cheaters (an amorphous description given that fact that we don't know for sure that no one on the veterans committee did or did not cheat) didn't vote them in. This is factually correct. And many share your view that they should not be allowed in. That's fine. But that isn't quite the point of debate in this little side conversation which is your strong feelings that the HOF not allow in cheaters while ignoring the presence of cheaters in the HOF as it exists today.

    I concede that you didn't vote in any cheaters into the HOF. I concede that those with a vote have not voted in Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, etc. The core of my question is: "Does the HOF, in its current state (ie no Bonds/Clemens) have credibility with you?" If your answer is "yes" then I wonder why you give a pass to the current cheaters in the HOF (regardless who voted to put them there). If your answer is "no" then my question is, "Why do you care about something that has no credibility with you?" I am not trying to be argumentative here or have a "gotcha" question. I am trying to make sense of what you are saying.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    You lost me after your 1st 2 paragraphs...My comments are right there... in response to comments posted. Read them in that context.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    Who was banned?

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    I give... who?

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    The hall of fame is full of cheaters

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    Thome + Jones (fWAR) = 153.6
    Ted Williams (fWAR) = 130
    Barry Bonds (fWAR) = 164.4

  • In reply to Cubswin09:

    How can you keep Bonds out?

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    He cheated & lied.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    What baseball rule did he break?
    Why don't you care about cheaters from earlier generations of baseball?

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    This guy gets it: “New HOF Chipper Jones on his Cooperstown conference call: 'I've said it publicly and often that Barry Bonds is the best player I've ever seen don a uniform.’”

  • In reply to Cubswin09:

    Bonds just might be the best player he ever saw don a uniform because he was on raids making his head the biggest ever seen to don a uniform.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    He definitely took steroids. Although even before that, he was the best player I ever saw play. His 1993 season was spectacular (one of many). In his first 12 seasons, before he likely started to take steroids, he had a 99 fWAR, roughly 50% better than Thome’s 20+ year career. Once Bonds started juicing, he became ridiculous.

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    In reply to Cubswin09:

    I don't like cheaters and both Bonds and Clements cheated. They were HOF players before the steroid era and then blew it. If I had my way I'd remove Gaylord Perry from the Hall because he threw a spitter and that's against the rules. There will be players getting in because we don't have definite proof (like Piazza I believe) but I don't want the obvious ones. There are consequences to behavior--for some reason we seem to have lost that belief and they have to suffer those.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    Seems to be a less popular viewpoint every day, but I agree wholeheartedly. Nobody is "owed" the HOF. They made their million$ and received the adoration they wanted. Now, they can just go away.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    That's where I land too. No to the obvious and unrepentant. As long as there is a character clause the Hall is not for them. Let Bonds and Clemons laugh at us on their way to the bank, but let's nor enshrine him for it.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    Which test did they fail?
    When were they suspended?
    Which of their records don't count?
    Do you care about the hall of famers that cheated using amphetamines?

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    I'd be curious how people feel about Tom Brady. He cheated. He never apologized. Or what about Papi: is he going to be allowed into the HOF? Or Andy Petite: he actually tested, but he did apologize, so is he let in?

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    Ya know, Bill Cosby wasn't convicted of anything. He's just a victim of idle talk and speculation. I wonder how many of the 'roid supporters would allow that nice old gentleman to babysit their daughter / granddaughter?

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    I can name several names whose names never came jup as juicers and maybe shoudl have . Pujols(13th rd draft pick, grew more than 35 lbs in 2 yrs in the minors) Jose Bautista(once broke his wrist hitting a 400ft foul ball and was with 6 teams before he took off in Toronto) Even Nolan Ryan-46yo and still throwing 95plus gas? how come nop one else ever did? I have little proof, It just seems there careers were beyond the norm in many respects.

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    In reply to Cubswin09:

    Thank you for laying out his case WITHOUT pointing to things that happened "after" he started taking Steroids.

  • In reply to Cubswin09:

    I agree that he was a really good ball player before he was thought to have taken steroids. So why did he take them? Or was he already on some form of them & just upped the quantity.... But none of that really matters because he took them & lied about it. He was invincible... fully roided, as big as he could possibly get himself, standing on top of home plate wearing body armor, daring the pitchers to throw strikes & smashing homers as far as he possibly could. It was a joke... a mockery of the game that he took to the ridiculous level.

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    In reply to Milk Stout:

    I remember hearing a story about Bonds in the late 90's being irritated that his more well-rounded game (as a young man Bonds was already good at drawing BB, hitting his share of HR, stealing bases, playing defense, etc.) was being overshadowed by "big, burly guys who did nothing but strike out and hit HR." So he decided to beat them at their own game. "You want HR, I'll show you HR." And that this was the impetus for him "bulking up." Obviously, I don't know that this is true. But it is a plausible explanation for why he did it. It would fit into his personality anyway.

    To me he was a HOF player in 1999. He was a HOF player in 2004. He was a HOF player when he retired. And he is a HOF caliber player right now.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    Bonds was too good to be juicing that heavy. Remember when they had to rush him to the hospital for a racing heartbeat. I wonder looking back now if he might have done things a little different?

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    Why did no other player take it to a ridiculous level?
    Isn't it possible he is the most talented player in the past 50 years and maybe in the top 5 in the history of the game?

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    Bonds got jealous of the attention McGwire and Sammy were getting for chasing the HR record. Sad in many respects, Bonds was a HOF caliber player before he juiced . Clemens OTOH was on a downhill track his last 2-3 yrs in Boston, good but not great in 95 , but suddenly took off when he went to Toronto.

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    In reply to Milk Stout:

    That's right. Chipper Jones has been living in a hole in the ground for the last 15+ years and is unaware of the steroids scandal surrounding Barry Bonds. Therefore he can be excused for not taking that into account when he says foolish things like, "I've said publicly," (presumably while still unaware of the allegations of Bonds' steroid use) "that Barry Bonds is the best player I've ever seen don a uniform."

    We also must remember that Chipper Jones hasn't seen nearly as much baseball as most of us and is utterly unable to make such a determination. We, the keyboard warriors, are uniquely qualified to judge Bonds' worthiness.

    Obviously you are entitled to your opinion on Barry Bonds--though I also have the right to just as stridently disagree with it. I believe that the HOF should enshrine the best players in the game. And the fact that it calls itself the HOF and doesn't include the all-time HR leader, all-time hits leader and all time leader in CYA makes it less in my eyes. All three of these guys were HOF caliber players BEFORE the transgressions that have banished them to baseball purgatory. If Bonds retires in 1999 or even after the 1998 season he is a HOF player. Through the end of the 1999 season Bonds had a 102.5 fWAR (by my addition). If you want to say his "Steroids inflated his head and his stats" you are free to ignore his "steroid years." He was unbelieveable for that stretch before anyone thought he was using steroids. And if you don't think that his performance was good enough by that point then we will probably have to eliminate others from the HOF such as Kirby Puckett (and there are some who say he shouldn't have been elected) with a fWAR of 44.9 and Sandy Koufax and his fWAR of 54.5 over famously "shortened" careers.

    Finally, the story of Barry Bonds' "big head" go back to EARLY in his career. And they had nothing to do with hat/helmet size. But rather, a comment on his personality and famous churlishness. LOL

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    Bonds put up insane numbers in his late 30's. I would of loved to see what he would of done if he was on PED's in his prime.

  • In reply to 2016 Cubs:

    There is a great New Yorker cartoon. I man is sitting at a bar, talking to the bartender. They are looking at a framed picture of a baseball player, and the man says something along the lines of: "Man, I wish I could have seen Mantel on steroids."

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    In reply to 2016 Cubs:

    I agree he put up un-godly numbers in his late 30's. I am not interested in seeing what he would have done in his prime on steroids. To me he as a joy to watch play the game. While I hated when he faced the Cubs he controlled the strike zone like no one I have ever witnessed. He always had a low K% and a healthy BB%. He had power. He had speed (something that is forgotten when what many people remember was him lumbering around), as a young man he was an outstanding defender by reputation and defensive metrics. He was a great player. He had transgressions and I am not saying we should pretend they didn't happen. But to me leaving someone out who was THAT good when playing "clean" is a travesty worse than putting in someone who extended his effective playing days at the end of his career.

  • In reply to 2016 Cubs:

    I don't have a problem with the PED users getting into the Hall of Fame. I believe there are ready PED users in the Hall now. So, might as well let the others in. I don't agree with the argument that Bonds and Clemens would of made HoF if they never used PED's. They still cheated.

  • In reply to Joel Mayer:

    Actually Bonds hat size went in 2001 from size 10 to size 13. Remember he also missed the 2004 season with knee surgery after "slipping in the shower". Bo Jackson , when once asked about how to tell an athlete is on steroids or PEDS said" look if they have bone related injuries for some pretty shaky reasons" . Tearing your knee ligament seems to qualify. So does Sosa throwing out his back"violently sneezing".

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    In reply to mutant beast:

    You missed the reference to the idiom "Big head" as in arrogant or thinking he is better/more important than he really is. I didn't say that his head didn't increase in size. I was trying to be funny.

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    In reply to mutant beast:

    FWIW, I have thrown out my back sneezing.

  • In reply to mutant beast:

    His hat size did not grow from a size 10 to a size 13 LOL. To funny.

  • In reply to Cubswin09:

    maybe because chipper never saw Willie Mays play. who did it without steroids

  • In reply to CubfanInUT:

    Mays did it with amphetamines

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    ARod did it with Madonna.

  • In reply to Cliff1969:

    apparently everyone did it withj Madonna. According to her anyway.

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    In reply to CubfanInUT:

    We could make a long list of players Jones likely never saw play that were better than Bonds. What, exactly, is the point. He said, "Bonds was the best he saw don a uniform." Remember, this was a statement of opinion. An opinion of someone who has seen/played a lot of baseball, but an opinion none the less. If Mays, Mantle, Aaron, Cobb, Ruth, Gehrig, Jackson, Wagner were better aren't really applicable. By the fact that he probably didn't ever see them "don a uniform" they are outside the scope of his comment.

  • Just throwing it out there in my opinion. Signing Darvish I'm fine with, but if we don't get him we need to sign Cobb or Lynn. AND with the money they would have sign Darvish with, since they are both millions less, sign Jon Jay back!!! Win either way!!!

  • In reply to Jer Bear:

    Why Jon Jay? Take at bats from Almora or Happ who are both better defensively & slugging....? Happ is more versatile & both are faster than Jay. Only way is if Almora is used in a trade, then I could see it.

  • Sosa got less than 8% of the HOF vote? I'm not complaining, but I'm shocked that it wasn't any higher than that. Where's the love for Sammy?

  • Why can't Lee Smith get any HOF support?

  • In reply to Hagsag:

    I think Smith should be in the HOF

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