Paring to (and Through?) the Core

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I'm trying to get into the holiday spirit. I've long been known as one of the most optimistic of fans, but these last few years have drug even my enthusiasm level down. I won't rehash my feelings here, because it's always a new day, with plenty of grass-is-greenerism just around the corner. How can we not be enthused with the waves and waves of talent percolating up through the system, and that Pot 'O Gold, the elusive and transformative TV contract, here upon us? I feel so giddy with the cold fingers of fandom tickling my ribs and promising better things, watching this juggernaut come into maturity, and fantasizing about the waste about to be layed by our boys in blue. It is certainly a holiday in this wonderland...

HAPPY HOLLOWEEN, DENIZENS!

It is their trick to our treat, their price to our privilege, their woe to our Mo. We have every advantage. Money, fame, and a loyalty that permeates through generations that will sit down and give thanks, to our country, to our beliefs, and to our Cubs. No other fanbase can claim such intimacy, and at this point my interns and production staff correct me in my holiday wishes. Barley, dude, get with it:

HAPPY THANKSGIVING, MY FELLOW CUBS FANS!

I can't give thanks to this current itineration of the Cubs. *My* Cubs. Of course I can reminisce and recollect the uphoria, the warmth, the drunken snow angels. But the effort since then has let us down. There is no other way to say it. We have gone downhill. Not just by poor signings and poor trades, poor scouting and poor development, but poor management and accountability, from the top down. We got lazy, and we got lapped.

I recall asking a hypothetical question in 2016. Where do we see ourselves in 3 years? I had never seen such a dominating projection in my baseball lifetime. We could:

  • A: Continue on our road of development, with an insane possibility of future domination
  • B:  Expect a certain level of regression and the competitiveness that would come with the up-and-comers biting at our heels, or
  • C: Expect a legitimate threat from a team or two in the NL who mimicked our blueprint.

Never did I contemplate the answer would actually be:

  • D: Our organization would become so narcissistic and self-aggrandized they would smack other organizations on the ass as they passed us rather than patting ourselves on the back when we swung our arms behind us.

So here we are. Ownership with boatloads of dollars but no confidence in the stewards of fiscal navigation. A complete makeover of a crew who threatened mutiny, or at least proved unworthy of competent vision. A mighty vessel in search of a rudder. We are adrift in a sea of competition while seemingly having lost our advantage of, well, superiority.

So now we bail. Damn it! It ain't supposed to be this way. The Winter Meetings take place December 8-12 in San Diego. This is when things really start to heat up. We've seen a few early deals, which can be a good sign, but the meat and potatoes happen (or at least are started) with these meetings. We should be augmenting a Championship team, with our financial might aimed at one or more of the big FA's, but alas. We are teased with the possibility of Javy's camp meeting with the Cubs' camp to discuss an extension, which does nothing to improve a lackluster team, but it does feed red meat to a starving fanbase. All other rumors and hot takes involve subtracting from this juggernaut during it's competitive window due to organizational malfeasance. The story lines surrounding our Cubs are not of what will be added, but what will be taken away. As uncertain as I have been regarding my holiday awareness, I can say for sure: BAH HUMBUG!

No Cole, nor Rendon, no Strasburg or Gibson. No Dasher, nor Dancer, no Prancer or Vixen. To heck with the reindeer, we have dibs on the unicorn!

I had planned on getting into the trade market for KB, Javy, Willson, and Rizzo. I've had some technical difficulties, but that actually sounds like this could lead to a more thougtful discussion. Cool. With all of our families gathering for Thanksgiving, there is sure to be a drunk uncle or a crazy cousin. You're lucky if you don't have to deal with a White Sox fan or someone pushing shots of Cuervo on you. If you get bored come on here and debate why your favorite player shouldn't be dealt. I'll be here, as I'm sure I'll get tired of some of the company. Right?

Before I totally let go of this holiday thing, I do have one more Christmas present for everyone. The non-tender deadline is Dec. 2nd. We will get approx. $5.2M in savings when we say goodbye to a middle-infielder that we should have said goodbye to a loooooooooonnnnnnng time ago.

Shhhhhhh, me.

Happy Thanksgiving, ya'll.

Go Cubs!

 

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  • I hope I'm wrong, but I believe we've seen this movie before. By spring training we will have added only fringe retreads to both the pitching staff and outfield. Grrrr. Third place in the NLC? If we're lucky.

  • Happy Holidays! Well written and points well made. We can lament all of the spilled milk of the last couple of seasons or hope that Theo has a bold plan. I'd love to believe our billionaire owner will just say, go for it, and blow past a luxury tax that he CAN afford. Sign Rendon and give him the deal Bryant will want and get some solid young pitching back for Kris. I love KB but like you say, a shake up is badly needed. And they'll still need a CFer... and a lead off guy... and BP help... and.... anyway... Big offseason for management.

  • fb_avatar

    Was hoping for a Urias trade ,but the brew crew beat us to it, now I'm pulling for a Bundy trade, maybe Almora and a pitcher, maybe Alzolay.
    If we could swing Bundy, my next move would be trading Quitana, free up some money to sign Wheeler, this is the closest we can get to fixing our pitching problem in the short term, really don't see us in Strasburg or Cole.
    Getting Baez on long term should be the next move, trading Bryant and/or Contrares wouldn't help this season any, but I do believe they or Schwarber will be moved.
    Hoerner can come up and play 2nd base or use him and another player for Merrifield, sign the japanese cf'er or use Happ in center and you count your blessings.

  • In reply to tater:

    Maybe Descalso straight up for Bundy. But, no more. Not impressed with his 5.13 ERA over the last 2 years.

  • In reply to 2016 Cubs:

    I'm intrigued by Bundy, though I'll admit I've always liked his promise and pedigree. He has two years of arb control left at age 27, and is scheduled to receive just shy of $6M in 2020. He hasn't had major injury concerns and his talent and peripherals suggest to me he could take that next step in a new organization.

    For all the things we've done wrong in drafting and development, there have been promising signs coming out of our pitching lab. Nothing earth-shattering, but being able to unlock the true potential of guys with stuff. It could be a mechanical tweak or, more often, simplification. I feel Bundy could be a good candidate. He's still young, has the ability, and wouldn't be expected to be anything more than a BOR anchor, which he has proven capable of. Plus lots of upside.

    It comes down to cost, of course. All the attributes I just mentioned will make him attractive to nearly every team in MLB. I wouldn't expect a bidding war, but he won't slip through the cracks. If we are making changes, I could see us picking up Bundy and dealing Quintana. They fill the same role, with prospects gone and acquired being about equal, and we'd save a few dollars in the process. IMO, Bundy has much more upside.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Why trade Quintana if you acquire Bundy? You just create another hole in the rotation.

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    It all depends on circumstances. I'm not suggesting it's a good idea, just something along the lines of the creativity we may see this offseason. I'd guess the plan is for Chatwood/Mills/Alzolay and whoever else we may pick up to compete for the 5th spot.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    I don't think the plan is to start Chatwood / Mills / Alzoloay.
    They are more plan c, d or e
    They will acquire another starter for the rotation.

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    I hope the Cubs add a quality starter this offseason at least a #2/3 starter.

    I would have zero issues with Chatwood as a backend starter for 2020. Especially if Cubs trade Quintana.

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    I would love to agree. The question is how?

  • In reply to 2016 Cubs:

    That wouldn't even get the conversation started

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    First of all, I hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving. I did, and a lot of pecan pie (made by me) is happily carried inside me.
    As for baseball, thank you BP for another excellent column. I will write later, but I wonder if it's wise for the Cubs to sign Villar, recently released by the Orioles? Our presumed SS next year is Nico and who is better? By signing him we don't give up any prospects and that's a good thing. I really don't want us to do that, but we don't have very many impact prospects so those are precious to keep. To develop them over a few years might save us millions and millions of dollars in the future. I have a feeling that somethings will be done during the meetings next week.
    Has there been a poll here on who of the core will most likely be dealt? The most talk is about KB, Willson and Kyle. Idk. I would like to sign the Japanese CF to start off.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    The media is floating rumors that the Cubs are shopping Brennan Davis for experienced pitching. I hope it isn't true, but if it is, then I think Theo is leaving in 2021 when his contract is up, ie, the future is now and he wants one last hurrah.
    https://www.mlb.com/cubs/news/30-prospects-who-could-be-traded

  • In reply to shalin:

    The article you gave a link for said the Cubs are not looking to trade Davis. I would be very surpised if the Cubs trade Davis. Got to ignore the media when they are making stories up.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    JF, our ‘presumed’ SS next year, is not Nico - at least as long as that guy,,,Baez, I think his name is, is still around.

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    In reply to cubbustible:

    oh, I know. I didn't mean to give that impression. Javy will be there for a number of years.

  • In reply to cubbustible:

    I assume he meant 2B, but everything is on the table. I'd tell you about the latest "trade Javy" rumors, but I haven't actually heard them. They're there, it's just that when they begin I put my fingers in my ears and yell "La la la la la!".

  • How about a package headed by Bryant to Dodgers with a package including Verdugo

  • In reply to Wrigley09:

    How about just keeping Bryant?

  • In reply to Wrigley09:

    Yes please! Verdego,may and lux for Bryant

  • I don't like how this dynasty has tuned, but here we are. I don't think blowing past the luxury tax is a good idea. It rarely works and tomorrow always comes. Can you spell hamstrung? Paying money for Rendon when we have Kris two more seasons seems foolish. Young players with Theo generally have to earn their spot, so will Hoerner. Trades are iffy and dry up quickly. Contreras' market has already been diminished. Good trading intentions are often not consummated. There is no crying in baseball, but whining hangs in there pretty good. Fans might see mostly the same team, hoping for better results. If we win a world championship, wouldn't that be something. Go Cubbies!

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Contreras's value has "diminished"? With D'arnoud and Grandal off the market and 3 years of team control, his value is through the roof.

  • In reply to Ronson54:

    Sorry,the number of teas looking for a catcher.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Ah, got it.

  • What would a full rebuild look like?

    Imagine what we could get for KB, Rizzo, Willson & Javy. 2 near ready prospects for each of them? One year in the cellar and then back to exciting baseball again. Where do we sign. This ‘core’ has disappointed to say the least.

  • In reply to good4you:

    Depending on how you define "core", I don't think that is what has disappointed. At this point I see the core as Bryant, Rizzo, Javy, and Willson. Maybe Hendricks if you want to include a pitcher. They are fine, it's the supporting cast around them.

    A few years ago, that core included Schwarber, Russell and Almora. Schwarber looks to be legit, and I believe is coming into his own as a consistent force. Almora has certainly disappointed, but in all honesty, was never thought of as a potential impact player aside from his glove. Russell has, well...

    With the payroll, expectations, and probably most importantly the new TV deal, I don't see a full tear-down and rebuild. I also don't believe it's necessary. My best guess is we take a step back, probably trade a core guy or two to help the future, but still field a competitive team. Possibly even get under the tax penalty altogether while giving Ross and the new FO structure time to put their fingerprints on things, and go big on free agents next year without the penalties.

    But no full rebuild.

  • Why do the Dodgers always have $$ to spend and we never have any?

  • In reply to Hagsag:

    The cubs have spent plenty of money, maybe not as much as dodgers but to say never have money is a stretch.

  • In reply to Hagsag:

    The Cubs have spent more than the Dodgers the last 2 years

  • In reply to Hagsag:

    We never have any because they've spent so much. The Dodgers haven't had to because their farm system is so much stronger than ours. Every year they bring up another stud that is fully ready to shine at the ML level, is another young, controllable player they don't have to pay big for, for years.

  • I do think Theo and Jed did get a bit full of themselves. They are smart guys and have had a ton of success in the past, but did get lazy as you mentioned.

    The good thing, though, is that they are smart and good at what they do. Maybe things have been shaken up a bit and they are more eager than ever to get this thing fixed.

    If so, I am optimistic for next season.

    After all, do the Brewers and Cardinals really scare you?

  • Newsflash, every single team owner is a billionare. Every single MLB team, that honestly tries to compete, has bloated contracts that look like only a moron would make. And all of this is because players want to be paid what they are "worth" after years and years of being called "assets" and valued on "service time" and all of that only after coming up through a minor league system which is set up to pay these guys so that they live like perpetual college students till they make it or break it.

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    In reply to JohnCC:

    Plus, I wish all the clubs would pay their minor leaguers a decent wage--these are the future of the teams and what they pay them is pitiful.
    On a different note, I've been reading on Bleacher Nation about Richard Gallardo, one of our high priced IFA 2 years ago. He was the highest rated pitcher and has done nothing to change that opinion. He can be a #1 pitcher and another no trade prospect. We have to keep our difference makers.

  • In reply to JohnCC:

    The Rays won 96 games with a $53m payroll, the lowest in the league. The A’s won 97 games with a payroll slightly over $100m. Obviously money gives teams an advantage but I do agree with Ricketts that spending isn’t the primary key to building a winner.

  • Non-tender candidates, Blake Treinen of the A's or Jake Lamb of the Diamondbacks if teams are really considering non-tendering him to save money.

    With A's former assistant GM, just hired by the Cubs, he should have complete knowledge of B. Treinen.

    Treinen, & Lamb both look like high upside, low trade cost, and really affordable one year deals. I'm sure there is a few more worth looking at.

    I would be shocked if the Cubs offer A. Russell arbitration. I get the feeling the Cubs have been trying to trade Russell since they tendered him a contract last offseason, and found zero interest.

  • In reply to Naujack:

    Glad you brought up Russell, I wanted to clarify that a bit. I'm with you all the way, and if he is on the opening-day roster we have failed miserably this offseason. We have until 7PM on Dec. 2 to offer a contract, but don't be "shocked" if we do.

    For all the rehabilitation and second-chance bluster, the reason we have held onto him is to attempt to rebuild baseball value before dealing him. We also had no competent backup for Javy, but Nico is now close enough (if he survives the paring). I can see us tendering Russell a contract as worst-case scenario insurance. He's projected around $5.2M in arbitration, *but* it's non-guaranteed until opening day. We can cut him out of spring training and only owe about $1M. I could see us not cutting him for nothing now and hoping beyond hope that something clicks this offseason so that we can get anything of value prior to opening day. If not, cut him for $1M.

    Either way, if he is on this roster on opening day, something went wrong.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Nico better survive ‘the paring’, since he is the type of hitter that the FO has been saying they want to add to the lineup.
    To do anything else but keep Nico, would likely cause me to loose all faith in that group. If they felt the team was one player away from becoming a NL championship, then I understand. But I don’t see this Cubs team, currently being in that position of dominance.

  • In reply to cubbustible:

    I love Nico, called him "Suave" during game posts, and agree completely he's the type of player we need to balance our lineup. But that's really beside the point. We fret over the on-field product because we're fans; the real action now is in the FO.

    There has been much discord brewing, and it hit a head at the end of this disappointing season. Things weren't working and everyone knew it. We've seen a massive and complete overhaul, except for the top couple spots. I feel ownership didn't want to go that far with the new TV negotiations underway.

    I don't know what the plan is, and the vibe I get is neither do those in charge. Does Theo go all-in for his last couple years, or play it safe and leave a stable franchise? My best feeling is we don't blow it up, one way or the other. We don't tear it down and we don't sell the farm. I also hear that Theo no longer has full autonomy. There are some reigns being pulled.

    Point being, all the action is in the FO power structure, and the roster is a guess. Nico isn't, in my mind, a block to build around. His fate, like every other player on this team, depends on which vision prevails in upper management.

    They don't know, and neither do I.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    I would be very disappointed if Theo didn’t have full reigns of running the organization. If you mean having some financial restrictions, then I get it. But if he needs to run anything by the Ricketts, then we are destined for failure. The Ricketts need to stay the hell out of baseball decisions. Period. If they are questioning Theo, then fire him. But get out of the way and the the experienced baseball execs do their job. They are fine people and have been good owners. But don’t think for a minute they know enough about how to build a winning baseball team. They didn’t stay at a Holiday Inn last night.

  • In reply to rbrucato:

    Sorry, I didn't mean to imply this is becoming a Jerry Jones-type situation. The main restrictions I am referring to are financial, not because they are cheap, but because of the recent trajectory of the franchise and the long-term health of the organization. As Tom Ricketts said:

    "The real key is you have to develop players. You can’t really buy teams. You have to build them. I think everybody in baseball understands that. Our guys know that. We have to really just refocus on drafting well and then working out a lot of the newer analytics and newer strategies for developing players to get their maximum potential. That’s really what our challenge is now looking forward."

    That statement fully encompasses everything we've been seeing this offseason. I've heard that there have been some independent evaluations of the franchise over the past year or so, and the recommendations have been discussed and are being implemented by Theo and Co. Not day-to-day supervision of decisions; they don't have to run anything by ownership. Just some longer-term suggestions that the FO was not-so-voluntarily nudged towards implementing to improve a stagnant infrastructure.

  • In reply to cubbustible:

    What if Nico is one of the key pieces to get Merrifield?
    I think you trade him in that scenario.

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    I wouldn't. Nico should/could be the same, if not better, player by 2021. Consider Merrifield's decline as he loses a step and Nico rise as he grows into the league. Merrifield is a nice player, but I don't trade a 22 year old for
    the 30 year old version of said player.

  • In reply to Naujack:

    Where would Lamb play?

  • In reply to Hagsag:

    If Arizona is thinking about non-tendering Lamb. Then Cubs should be able to trade for him without giving up much. 3B/1B. You trade Bryant he is part of a platoon at 3B. Otherwise he is a backup for Bryant and Rizzo, which means I wouldn't go after him.

    I'm more interested in the Cubs acquiring B. Treinen.
    These are absolutely buy low, and hope for a bounce back season before they become free agents.

    I believe the Cubs ownership when they say they don't want to spend. Are the Cubs a third place team heading in the wrong direction? Bloated payroll, key players getting more expensive, weak, but improving minor league system, & ownership whining about paying competitive balance tax.

  • In reply to Naujack:

    Why would you want Lamb based on his past 2 seasons?

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    The Cubs have said they are not going after top tier free agents, so they need to figure out how to get better on the cheap. This is a buy low, hope he is healthy, and plays like he did in 16 & 17. Free agent after 2020, so plenty of motivation to play well.

    I'm not saying Lamb is the guy, but this is kinda what small market teams do.

    I think last offseason this front office was caught off guard by spending limits. They looked for internal improvements.

    That is not the case this offseason. I think this front office will do really well, and they have a plan to move this team forward just not for 2020, but beyond.

  • New thought, I saw that the Orioles put Villar on waivers ahead of the non-tender deadline on Monday. I believe I read that his arb salary would be around $6M. He seems like a great replacement for Russell and Descalso/Kemp, however you want to look at it.

  • In reply to JohnCC:

    IMO Villar and Lamb would be nice pickups, if KB was traded for pitching help and a good prospect.

  • In reply to JohnCC:

    I would totally much rather have Villar than the deadbeat Russell, especially if we can drop Russell, and put Villar in his place for only about $2M more, especially considering he's a switch-hitter.

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    In reply to Cubber Lang:

    I'd have Villar at 2nd base and put Nico in CF if we can't get anyone else.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    So we're all in agreement that Theo/Jed are working on trade scenarios. Esecially since they were working on it last summer.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    Nico has barely played center field in professional baseball. He isn't ready to play every day especially in a position he would be learning in the majors. I see them getting a center fielder - either the player from Japan or fill via a trade.

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    In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    The best would be Akiyama. He's a proven CF (in Japan) and better than anyone we have right now as an all around player. I've been a big Albert A supporter, but he just hasn't progressed the way I thought he would. Nico could be a backup just like Happ was in the beginning. I'd rather see him at 2nd if we don't sign Villar or trade for one.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    Nico should play every day in the minors

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    If Nico needs more time in the minors, that's where he should be. If he is ready for the show, that's one less hole to fill. Conventional wisdom says he could use more time. I think part of the point of thIs discussion was that there might not be a trade or signing out there that makes sense.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    An acquisition will be made

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    I can get on board with Akiyama. I think Nico needs to spend at least a half year in the minors. I'd like Merrifield at 2b and Akiyama in center

  • In reply to Cubber Lang:

    I would totally be on board with that.

  • In reply to rbrucato:

    I could be good with that, because it's a simple solution, that might close the lineup issue. Big moves create big risks. An org could be trading an All Star if they panic.

  • In reply to JohnCC:

    It is closer to 10 million

  • Feliz Cumpleanos El Mago! Hopefully many more in cubbie blue! Sign that extension!

  • fb_avatar

    I meant to say that yesterday. Already 27--I remember him when he was young, not that 27 is by any means old.

  • Unfortunately, I’m sticking with what I said mid-season (to myself): just trade everyone. Within literally one year you can be ready to compete again. We tend to have rosy outlooks on trades and they rarely bring in the returns we hope for, which is why it often pays to have multiple layers of insurance in the form of multiple prospects.

    Unloading Bryant, Baéz, and the pitching staff would reap huge dividends. Obviously it hurts to trade away fan favorites, but at this point, this is the hole we’ve dug ourselves. People will ask ‘Well who will want Lester and Quintaña’? But we all know how desperate teams are at the deadline to add any piece that will possibly put them over the top, especially if it’s veteran pitching depth. Hendricks would be even stronger bait, though he doesn’t have to be traded. Trade away all these guys and you’ll have quite a few decent high level prospects ready to go. Cut back the budget and get ready to spend more appropriately in the years to come.

    I suppose my point is that it’s terribly sad to lose people we’ve become attached to, but the sun will still rise tomorrow and we’ll have new players to enjoy and new heroes to look up to. We did this to ourselves and now it’s time to pay up.

  • In reply to CP22:

    I didn't keep it to myself and it wasn't too popular at the time. Still isn't to some. But that's a bit extreme IMHO. It's not '11 or '12. There's a lot to work with moving forward. No need to throw the baby out with the bath water.

    What the Cubs don't want to become is a team strangled with a $200 mil + payroll consisting of a lot of big $ long term contracts they can't give away. The formula they ran with did bring a WS win and multiple postseason appearances. So it wasn't a failure by any means.

    Today's a big day. Let's see who the Cubs and others non tender for one reason or another. Might be a few guys available that fit where they want to go.

  • In reply to CP22:

    Trading everyone would most likely lead to multiple years of being bad. Very little chance of being good in a year. No need for a panic rebuild.

  • The reds just signed moustakas, 4 years 64 mil.

    The cubs run was nice while it lasted

  • In reply to bolla:

    that may not end the Cubs run

  • In reply to John57:

    If course not but the reds have beaten the cubs in the season series in ‘19 and played them tough in ‘18. They are on the rise ,already have solid starting pitching and have money to spend.

  • In reply to John57:

    But it does eliminate a potential replacement at 3B. I guess we have to keep "Golden Boy" now.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    You make it seem like that would be a bad thing.
    Bryant should be kept.

  • In reply to WaitUntilNextYear:

    No. Just a subtle dig at fans who have biases against certain players for the wrong reasons.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    If he was Arenado with the leather I'd say pay the man. He's not. Decisions need to made.

    I actually like the idea of extending Schwarber now. If his trend continues (I think it will) the price tag is only going up.

  • In reply to bolla:

    Cubs are still much better than the Reds

  • And there it is! The decision on the Russell tender situation.

    Details at 11:00.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Or 5:50.

    He gone!

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Sans Nico there is no back up SS on the roster. Could shape up to be a very interesting off season.

  • In reply to Cubmitted:

    Zack Short was added to the 40-man, but I hear you. I'm just glad this chapter is finally over. I'm upset over how the whole saga has played out.

    To me, the lowest point of my respect for Theo was when he was asked what he would testify as a character witness in Russell's DV case. Theo replied "I only know him in a baseball context". That is complete BS. I'm nobody and I've been ratting that dude out with first-hand knowledge for years. There is no way little 'ol me knows this and the Cubs didn't.

    Then there is this statement today:

    "We decided to non-tender Addison Russell today simply because the role we expected him to play for the 2020 Cubs was inconsistent with how he would have been treated in the salary arbitration process."

    Poor Addy. The way he would have been treated.

    There are a lot of bad things in this world. It is a sick individual who physically harms another when in a position to encounter no resistance. Pure domination with no fight back. That makes me sick, and I feel for the victims. Makes me want to have a "talk" with the perpetrators.

    End of rant. Goodbye, you worthless...

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    I think the " how he would have been treated" comment can be interpreted a few ways.

    That said as of 12-2-19 15 players from the 2016 WS roster are now gone. See who's left by opening day.

    We can probably stop being sentimental about it.

  • In reply to Cubmitted:

    Fair enough. It could be interpreted as he would be treated "badly", or "unfairly", or even "honestly". How Addison Russell would have been treated during an arbitration process underscores the detachment from reality that plagues this FO. They won't admit a mistake and keep doubling down. Let it go, FO. You were wrong on evaluation and ignored glaring red flags. Even upon his release they take cover in virtue.

    I am so over this chapter. This is the attitude that has led us into our current circumstances. The FO has had a couple outside consulting evaluations kick them where it hurts and re-evaluate their ways. They are moving forward.

    I hope it works. Go Cubs!

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Theo - In the year since we decided to tender Addison a contract last November, he has lived up to his promise to put in the important self-improvement work necessary off the field and has shown growth as a person, as a partner, as a parent and as a citizen.

    "We hope and believe that Addison’s work and growth will continue, and we have offered our continued support of him and his family, including (ex-wife) Melisa.”

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    You were the first person I thought of when I heard the news. You really have been on this for years.

  • In reply to TC154:

    Hey, TC! Glad to hear from you, my friend. Hope you have had a wonderful start to this holiday season.

    I took a beating that night, and for the next few weeks. I deserved half of it. Vindication doesn't feel good in this instance, even in hindsight.

    How 'bout that pitching staff? I know that is your passion. We'll be alright, somehow. As much as I predict doom and gloom, I'm always looking on the bright side. We will prevail.

    I could go for a blast from the past, how about you?

    "This old engine makes it on time.
    Leaves Central Station 'bout a quarter to nine.
    Hits River Junction at seventeen two,
    At a quarter to ten you know it's travelin' again."

    So glad to hear from you, TC. Take care, my brother.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    I wouldn’t miss hot stove season! Five weeks out from open heart surgery to implant the LVAD heart pump. Hoping to be back on the transplant list around the first of the year. Feeling better every day. I’ll feel much better if we can trade for some pitching talent

  • In reply to TC154:

    Good luck TC. Have a wonderful Holliday season.

  • In reply to TC154:

    I hope all goes well. Chime in when you can, we'll need your steady hand during this tumultuous offseason.

  • They agreed with Cotton on a 600+ K contract. Russell still pending.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    I'm interested in seeing Cotton go through the pitching lab, along with CD Pelham. For all our deficiencies in development, I've seen some promise come out of that program.

  • In reply to BarleyPop:

    Yeah, me too. Pelham’s a lot rougher yet than Cotton, though. Wonder if they try the ole waiver wire stash with him in a couple days.

    I am excited about all of the recent Cub organizational hires lately. Sounds like they’ve self scouted & decidedly upped their developmental game.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    Without getting into the weeds, yeah, the FO has been "nudged" that way.

  • It's official russell non tendered per wittenmeyer

  • In reply to bolla:

    Tell him “Don’t let the door hit ya where the good Lord split ya.”

  • Jeff passan reported the cubs have been aggressive and manic about making a trade! Hopefully it’s blinky bryant to the dodgers

  • In reply to bolla:

    Why would you want one of our best players to be traded to a team the Cubs will hopefully be competing with for the NL title? If the Cubs do trade Bryant, I'm hoping they can get the most in return from an AL team.

  • In reply to Cubpack:

    I hope he doesn’t get traded to be honest, but I also don’t want him to walk away in two years and get nothing. If that’s the likely outcome the key is the return, not who he’s traded for. Atlanta is the team with assets I want though. If it’s the Dodgers I want Gavin Lux and Dustin May and I’m not sure it’s in Andrew Friedman’s DNA to do that.

  • In reply to TC154:

    I would want Seager and Verdugo. I like Gray better than May too.

    They do make a good trade partner.

  • In reply to TC154:

    I agree TC. I don't want to trade him, but if they do, it's who gives them the best return. I would just prefer that be an AL team. And I also don't believe the Dodgers will give up that much for two years of Bryant. They are already overloaded in the infield with Turner, Seager, Lux, Muncy, Hernandez, Beaty. And Bellinger plays 1st at times also.
    The Braves could be interested but my guess is they are trying to resign Donaldson as their first choice.

  • In reply to Cubpack:

    Because the dodgers have the prospects the cubs need. Win win for both teams , the cubs aren’t legit nl pennant contenders Right now. I’d take may,verdego and lux/Seager for Bryant in a heartbeat

  • In reply to bolla:

    So would the Cubs. But no way the Dodgers give up that much for 2 years of Bryant.

  • In reply to Cubpack:

    Yea you're probably right, realistically just wishful thinking on my end

  • In reply to bolla:

    Thank Gawd you’ll never be a GM otherwise we’d wind up being the Lansing Lugnuts...

  • Dodgers met with Anthony Rendon and he prefers a short term high aav deal(so do the dodgers). This has Major ramifications that affects the cubs in more ways than one ,and quite frankly I’m nervous.

  • In reply to bolla:

    Quite frankly, when aren't you nervous?

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