Sunday Rumor Roundup

A quick rundown of the rumors... - Paul Kinzer and Hendry will meet again on Monday to discuss Ramirez's extension. - Some inklings of Wade Miller coming back. - More talk of pegging Alfonso Soriano for CF and leadoff duties. That all comes from this Sun-Times article. - Piniella is targeting Alan Trammell for his bench coach.

Comments

Alan Trammell? Aw, crap.

Getting Soriano would be nice, but him playing center isn't ideal and him leading off is plain dumb. At the very least move him back to second and put a major league hitter in front of him, instead of nobody in the 1st and a pitcher the rest of the time. Maybe: Murton Soriano Lee Ramirez Barrett Jones Izturis CF/SS/2B (depending on the person and position) Pitcher

So it looks like Baker didn't want Rothschild around, but must of gotten overruled by Hendry. Like I said a few days ago, Rothschild is one of Hendry's boy. From Sun Times article: <i>It's no secret Dusty Baker grew uncomfortable with the pitching coach he inherited. Baker had lobbied to make Dick Pole his pitching coach. Instead, Pole remained in the role of bench coach.</i>

Also, Rothschild is one of Lou's boys. So, its a win-win for Lou and Jim. But what does it mean for the rest of us? Pass the kool-aid.

ARam's agent from Sun Times article: <i>"Really, we are just getting started," Kinzer said Saturday. Good to see it appears Hendry is in no hurry. ~rolls eyes~</i>

yeah, hendry's totally clueless about aram. he lost kinzer's phone number cuz he was too busy watching MTV and sipping on 40s the past 2 months. yeah, he never even called or talked once. his sense of urgency in the situation is a total suprise. "just getting started" by an agent...yeah...that means hendry's done nothing...no calls, no talks...it probally slipped his mind. damn dude...its negociations...aram and his agent holds the cards and if hendry doesnt own to the money AND years its not gonna go anywhere. the language of a potential contract is not only probally not set in stone, but probally not even at that point yet. NO team has signed their potiential high-market keeps yet. hendry's not special in this situation. what's the use of panic when its not even stress-time yet...there's still 3-ish+ weeks before stress-time even kicks in. more than almost any other team's situation, this one was VERY spelled out for both sides. aram/agent are gonna want and hendry knew this. we know this. we know what's at stake and what not trading him would lead to, and its pretty safe to say everyone on the adminstrative side were very well aware, too. the process is gonna take time and a quote here/there about how early everything is wont change it.

<i>Bill K</i> <i>Getting Soriano would be nice, but him playing center isn't ideal and him leading off is plain dumb.</i> Yeah, if you have a guy that can hit 30+ home runs (which seems reasonable for him in '07) you want to give him a chance to do it with guys on base. I don't know why that's so complicated. Sure you can find splits that show he bats better in slot x than slot y, who cares, '07 is a new year. And BTW the Soriano talk is nice, but I'm really concerned about the pitching rotation. If the Cubs don't make the rotation the #1 priority (extending Ramirez) they can forget all about improving on last year's W-L record.

unless soriano's OF issues revolve around the handling/judging of popups (which, btw, he had issues with in LF for part of the season, early)...he's capable of CF. there's back/forth arguement of whether its easier to read the ball off an angle at the corner OF or straightaway CF...lotta people consider it a bit harder in CF, but some don't really care or dont think its an issue. CF is all about getting to the ball, which his speed will let him...but anyone's main knock of whether they can play there or not is if they can find the ball quick enough and get to it...be it natural ability to read/catch (edmonds) or use his speed to make up for misjudging the ball (patterson). if the cubs do take the change hopefully it wont end up like mabry, who was brought in to play the corners off the bench only to find out in ST that his 3rd skills have deteriorated to being useless at 3rd.

Ryno- I agree with you on the pitching rotation upgrade needed. I think getting ARam reupped is #1 and then these two things need to be focused on: 1) getting Soriano and 2) spending every other availible dollar on starting pitching. I just hope this WS gets over ASAP so the actual offseason stuff can start up and so many holes/question marks need to be filled.

#3 of 9: By mannytrillo (October 22, 2006 01:00 PM) Like I said a few days ago, Rothschild is one of Hendry's boy. --- And Piniella's boy and Leyland's boy

Interesting story about Detroit (and for those of you who don't think the Cubs should shell out a bunch of money for expensive FAs): <i>~snip~</i> <i>Dombrowski admits he might have had to pay more for Rodriguez than other teams, but argues he had no choice. He did the same thing the following offseason by signing outfielder Magglio OrdoÒez, a slugger with suspect knees, to a five-year, $75 million deal. Let the trickle-down begin.</i> <i>"If he doesn't sign here," closer Todd Jones said of Rodriguez, "Maggs probably doesn't sign here. And then if those two guys don't sign here, the other guys probably don't, either. It just kind of snowballs."</i> <i>~snip~</i> <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/10/19/AR2006101901637.html" rel="nofollow">Story</a>

<b>So it looks like Baker didn't want Rothschild around, but must of gotten overruled by Hendry. Like I said a few days ago, Rothschild is one of Hendry's boy.</b> this is from this year from Dusty: http://www.topix.net/content/trb/3268696942214608999225167398162143199078 <i>On all the coaching staff being his guys: I strongly urged for Larry (Rothschild, right) to stay, and pushed strongly also for Chris Speier to be hired here in the first place. I know Chris is a good baseball man. I've known Chris for years and I need a good third-base coach and infield instructor at the same time.</i> not that I even care about Larry, the pitchers seem to like him much like Dusty and he seems to be respected, much like Dusty. I just doubt that he was forced onto anybodies staff.

what "other" guys? kenny rogers, rondell white, and troy percival?

LNL: <i>"and Leyland's boy" If he was Leyland's boy, then why didn't he go to DET last offseason?</i>

Detroit was in a little different position, they had come off a historically bad season that couldn't be blamed on injuries with absolutely no talent whatsoever and not in a city that really draws FA's. They had no choice but to overpay both of those guys. I'm not saying the Cubs shouldn't overpay as well, but they have a bit more talent in place than the 2003 Tigers did. My off-season wish list: 1) Soriano or other power hitting CF 2) Schmidt or Matsuzaka 3) solid league average innings-eater hopefully on the right side of 30 that there's still potential for him to mature into a better pitcher 4) Marcus Giles or Ray Durham 5) one or two pitchers who could either be starters or slide into the bullpen. and of course resign Aramis... word from a Ny paper is the Mets are looking at Moises Alou and/or Julio Lugo (for 2b).

Rob G.: <i>"I just doubt that he was forced onto anybodies staff." I was clearly under that impression too, but De Luca says it was no secret Baker wanted him replaced with Dick Pole. But it is amazing that Rothschild, let alone any coach, has made it through 4 managers (Baylor, Kim, Baker and Piniella) now. Looks like Hendry isn't the only one that can use "Teflon" as a nickname.</i>

didn't Rothschild turn down the offer to come back to the Cubs? He had a 3 yr deal waiting for him in Detroit is what I remember?

3yr with more money, too.

Rob G.: <i>"didn't Rothschild turn down the offer to come back to the Cubs? He had a 3 yr deal waiting for him in Detroit is what I remember?" Yep, that is what I recall too.</i>

well Deluca speculates something, Dusty says the opposite at some point. I guess we'll find out in the Dusty's tell-all book. :) whatever he's here and just like every coach in the game, he'll look a lot better if the talent is here and they're healthy.

If Dusty didn't want Roth, he would be in Detroit.

Well I don't want Roth, so can he go to DET?

Well I don't want Roth either.

what's roth supposedly doing anyway? the pen kids last year sure showed improvement this season and im hard pressed to think of any pitchers roth has ruined that's gone on to greatness or even "slightly better" elsewhere. there was that 1 year of j.cruz in ATL, but his home/away splits and him throwing the exact same stuff say it deserves a deeper look. players seem to appreciate what info he's slinging, anyway.

MANNYTRILLO: Really, when it comes to agent-speak, I never, EVER believe what they say as they are always posturing for their players. We won't know until the deal is done, or not, what happened in the negotiations. I was also wondering if you went to Happy Valley to see the Nittney Lions play (well, get killed) against the near-pro Ohio State squad?

E-Man: "I was also wondering if you went to Happy Valley to see the Nittney Lions play (well, get killed) against the near-pro Ohio State squad?" I haven't been back to Happy Valley for a game since before they added the new upper deck like 5-7 years ago. And I agree with you about agents talk, but the fact does remain ARam isn't signed, and maybe his agent is sending alittle message that Hednry's isn't even close. But yes, who knows, and who cares, except for him signing ASAP.

SORIANO: I am not as intensly stat-aware as some of you. However, in looking at Soriano's offensive numbers in 2006, a couple things are interesting: he struck out 167 times! However, in basically the same number of AB's as '05, he DOUBLED his BB totals with 67. Also, Soriano's OBP of .351 is not too shabby considering that he scored 119 runs. Juan Pierre scored 87 runs in a broken-down lineup, with an OBP of .330 But the first 60 days of the season, he was a no-show, as was Ramirez who many of you want to give away the farm to. In my opinion, Soriano has a strong arm and would do o.k. in CF. But maybe LF would suit him better.

the tigers overpaid for rodriguez, and the mets overpaid for pedro (this may bite them a bit in the arse). i have no problem overspeding a bit to let people know that the club is serious. i have to believe that hendry DOES NOT want to blow this, and hopefully will be able to pry open those tribune co's coffers slightly more than usual. i really do not think we are THAT far. one or two big signings (soriano, zito?, i am not really good at this stuff) and, i think more significantly, prescient choices on the mid-level signings, as st louis did with eckstein and suppan. those, and a renewed sense of urgency and purpose, could propel the cubs to the top of a middling nl central.

HAH! i meant "not THAT far"

"Mark Prior isn't expected to be ready by spring training, so he's out of the picture." I realize the team can't count on Prior, but has he really already been ruled out? no chance of being healthy to start the season?

<i>But the first 60 days of the season, he was a no-show, as was Ramirez who many of you want to give away the farm to.</i> Who you talking about Pierre or Soriano? Sounds like your talking about Soriano who was crushing the hell out of the ball to start the season. I say throw 15 million at Soriano, trade for Crawford...you get 2 excellent offensive upgrades in the OF for 20 million. Team still has another 20-25 million left for the pitching side. I am gonna be obsessed with Crawford like I was with Giles until that dream is crushed into a thousand tiny pieces by this franchise.

<i>joe c:</i> <i>I realize the team can't count on Prior, but has he really already been ruled out? no chance of being healthy to start the season?</i> Prior who? The team needs to move on without him, and build a 5-man rotation that does not include him. If they offer arbitration to Prior (which I personally wouldn't), I'd definitely sign a replacement like Adam Eaton. If Prior miraculously is healthy enough to pitch again, just trade off Eaton for a offense upgrade or bench bat. Better yet, build a team around a 6-man rotation. It's not like all 6 will be healthy at one time anyways.

<i>MikeC:</i> <i>Sounds like your talking about Soriano who was crushing the hell out of the ball to start the season.</i> Soriano, BTW, had a couple real bad months, too.

<b>If they offer arbitration to Prior (which I personally wouldn't), I'd definitely sign a replacement like Adam Eaton.</b> You think you should just let Prior go and sign with another team? Brilliant idea.

#14 of 32: By mannytrillo (October 22, 2006 02:00 PM) LNL: "and Leyland's boy" If he was Leyland's boy, then why didn't he go to DET last offseason? Hell I dont know why he didn't leave. I'm sure somewhere in the Trib archives there is an interview with Larry stating why he chose to stay with the Cubs other than take the contract with the Tigers. If I remember right all that was said was some statement about how he "owes it to Chicago" to stick with the staff. It was pretty clear that he was Leyland's first choice though. It's also pretty clear that if your contention is that Larry is one of Hendry's "boys" the same can be said for Lou and Leyland. Was your post referenced above disputing that statement or are you just being an ass for the sake of being an ass?

Can we finally start calling Prior injury prone? So this will make it 4 straight Opening Days Prior will not be ready. WOO!!

RYNO: Prior who? That's FUNNY, man! Gents, I was referring to Pierre and Ramirez, whom many of us were counting on to "step-up" and be "the MAN" when DLEE went down. Didn't happen. Soriano was bad for the first 60-90 days of the season also? What IS IT with these athletes? Does the team need to emply a psychiatrist or hypnotist? I wish I could relax on my day gig for 2-3 months out of every year!

LNL: <i>"It's also pretty clear that if your contention is that Larry is one of Hendry's "boys" the same can be said for Lou and Leyland." That may very well be true, but obviously Rothschild doesn't have the recipricate the loyalty to Leyland like he does Piniella and even more so Hendry.</i>

I understand the frustration with Prior, but you can't just let him go at this point. I also don't think you can count on him to be part of the rotation at the start of the year. But if he's healthy (a big if) he'll be part of the rotation.

Soriano at 2b. Excuse me, I had the mispleasure to watch him for a couple years at 2b. He simply can't play it. If you think this year's Cubs defense at 2b was atrocious, you haven't seen anything yet. He's a LF

Soriano was fine early on, he sucked it up in June and Sept hitting barely over .200 in each of those two months. His power took off when Robinson moved him from the 3 hole to leadoff where he's most comfortable in late April early May.

No way Bob, according to the people here, there is no difference where a player bats. That's not according to me, but to the people here. I believe in leadoff hitters.

#38 of 38: By mannytrillo (October 22, 2006 03:41 PM) LNL: "It's also pretty clear that if your contention is that Larry is one of Hendry's "boys" the same can be said for Lou and Leyland." That may very well be true, but obviously Rothschild doesn't have the recipricate the loyalty to Leyland like he does Piniella and even more so Hendry. - Never said that he did. All I said was, in Post #10, that if Larry is Hendry's "boy", he is also Lou's "boy" and Leyland's "boy". This implies, although maybe i should have stated it originally, that given their managerial track records, I'd say Hendry is in pretty good company for having Larry as his "boy." Apparently, Larry has different "boy" levels though and Hendry is higher on Larry's "boy" scale than Leyland. Thank god we don't have a direct "boy" conflict between Lou and Hendry or this could get very confusing.... and even more pointless.

MONEYBALL - Re Soriano - isn't it generally held with the SABR people devotees that you want to get the most AB's to the players who get on base the most? So, unless they clog the basepaths, REGARDLESS of whether the player is a HR hitter or not, if they have a very high OBP, it is logical to place them in lineups at the top or first 3-4 slots where they can attain more at bats?

E-Man, I think most are agreeing that Soriano should bat between 1st and 4th if the Cubs pay $96 million dollars to have him on the roster for the next 6 years. Soriano Theriot Lee Ramirez Jones Barrett Murton Izturis Zambrano Schmidt Hill Maddux Marshall/Gallagher/Veal/Guzman and a cast of 1000's I could deal with that.

Maddux???? Neal? Trust me you could offer him 10 million a year and he is staying in LA. Let's see he is happy, effective, has guys who can field ground balls behind him and nearly halved his ERA since going there. Also Colletti LOVES him. Better chance of getting ZITO than Maddux

Odds are for Maddux staying in LA, no doubt, but I already heard they want to make a run at Schmidt before they decide on Maddux. It's POSSIBLE the money won't be there for him in LA. I'd take him back for $4-$5 mil a year on a one year deal, maybe a 2nd yr option.

If Maddux isn't available, what do you think about the Cubs going after Jamie Moyer for a bottom of the rotation guy.

maddux...moyer...i think i'd rather have neifi pitch. hell, why not just stick with marshall or guzman before going the 41+ year old 84mph multi-millionaire route.

Jessica: <i>"Better chance of getting ZITO than Maddux" That is the best news I have heard all day. But I agree with Rob, if he was willing to come back for for no more than $5 million, by all means, bring him back, but he is not worth anymore than that.</i>

Crunch -- Regardless of their age, Maddux and Moyer are still getting the job done. They both take the ball every fifth day and they are both at least as effective as any other #5 pitcher. The Cubs are going to have a somewhat fragile rotation next year with a young pitcher like Rich Hill and an injury prone pitcher like Mark Prior. Adding another unproven rookie to the mix doesn't make as much sense as adding a proven innings eater. With the Cubs injury problems, the rookies will probably get enough of a chance as it is. Having said that, I do really like Sean Marshall and would not be overly upset if he started the year as the Cubs #5 SP.

one of the "men behind the men" tyrone brooks from ATL going to the scouting dept. in cleveland. they're forming an administrative-scouting all-star team up there. some of the best of the "who's that?" guys. he's probally gonna be the next black GM of a club unless dave stewart gets active in administration again.

"Crunch -- Regardless of their age, Maddux and Moyer are still getting the job done. They both take the ball every fifth day and they are both at least as effective as any other #5 pitcher." agreed...i'd just rather have the expendable kids pitching rather than maddux/etc. throwing 4.00era+ ball. and yeah...i would MUCH rather have them over neifi...just exagerating a point. hehe...

one of the "expendables" is my pick for 5th starter, you need a league average (hopefully better at times) innings-eater as well, and that's basically what Maddux is at a more reasonable price than Adam Eaton or Jeff Suppan. And I do doubt that Trib is opening up their pocketbooks that much that we'll get whatever we want at whatever cost. Prior is still going to get paid $4-5 mil even if you don't want him to.

Trust me about the ONLY thing I am sure of in 07 is that Maddux is a Dodger. It is not going to be about money because there is no way they are going to insult him and it won't take more than 4-5 (if that) plus incentives to keep him. He will in Dodger blue till he retires in probably 2 or 3 years and most likely start his post season career with their AAA team conveniently located in Vegas. I don't Moyer is a terrible idea because you only need to committ to him for one season and there is simply no chance in my mind of getting either Zito or Schmidt. Suppan was high on my list but he has probably just doubled his value in the last two weeks so you are down to guys like Lily, Meche , Eaton , Wright You pretty much HAVE to sign ONE of them but committing to Moyer for one year might be better than signing two of them. As for the " I'd rather just play the kids" theory. THAT WAS the BIGGEST problem last year. Maybe Marshall,Guzman Ryu Marmol O'Malley can be a starter but I would not want to count on it. I figure between ALL OF THEM plus Prior and Miller , count on ONE spot. Add Z &amp; Hill and you have 3 so off season shopping starts with SP. The kiddie corp is going to have to back up all the injuries we know are coming which is fine but Moyer is not a terrible idea. Get him or somebody reliable but not great that you need to only to committ to for a year and you buy time to sort the kids out, otherwise you just end up like last year.

"He will in Dodger blue till he retires in probably 2 or 3 years and most likely start his post season career with their AAA team conveniently located in Vegas." maddux coaching the newschool? wow...dunno about that. he's a calm looking guy, but communication any way but his way isnt really his strong suit.

I strongly suspect Maddux will end up a manager rather than a pitching coach. He really does see the "whole" game not just pitching. He is literally famous for "calling " the game on days he is not pitching while pitchers and a few smart postition players ( notably Murton on the Cubs) hang around and listen to him basically predict what will happen. I don't see the slightest problem with his communication skills and do not let that soft little voice and calm appearence fool you, he is as ruthless and competative as they come. I think the biggest adjustment he will have to make is no longer being "one of the boys" in the club house but if he wants too ( and I think after one year off he will) I am pretty confident he can do it though alas more likely for the Dodgers or another West Coast teams than the Cubs

Just wondering who from that infamous Cleveland dept has done wondeful things. They've got a club thats 4the best in their division and their farm system is very very suspect after having many draft picks. Dont tell me about Chris Antonetti the 15th and Neal "THE 12TH" Huntingdon. One of their best baseball people left in John Farrell to Boston, thou they do have Ellis Burks and Robby Thompson. Please dont tell me about their scouting director Mirabelli, even out nitwit scouting director is better than him.

Also looks like we've got a new labor agreement thru 2011 and Gammons is saying that there will be no comp picks starting in 2007, seems like there should be a grandfather yr but it doesnt look like it according to Petey!

Should be interesting to see if this generation of players, especially HOFers like Maddux who are millionaires many times over, will want to manage.

Slamdog: <i>"looks like we've got a new labor agreement thru 2011 and Gammons is saying that there will be no comp picks starting in 2007" Thanks for the update. Didn't see that as I was watching NFL. Here is the link: http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2635232 Nothing in the article about FA draft pick compensation.</i>

<i>Rob G.:</i> <i>You think you should just let Prior go and sign with another team? Brilliant idea.</i> Yes. If you can think of a compelling reason why not, I'm all ears.

Go to ESPN and click on Gammons thoughts!!!

"do not let that soft little voice and calm appearence fool you, he is as ruthless and competative as they come." yeah...that's why i dont really see him as a coach...im not gonna chime in on the manager thing, they come in all flavors. he's a guy who's a good teacher as long as you get it his way or you just shut up and listen if you dont understand. he's not a very patient guy...i dont see him mixing well with the newschool baseball era where a lotta guys are millionaires before they're old enough to rent a car.

"One of their best baseball people left in John Farrell to Boston, thou they do have Ellis Burks and Robby Thompson. Please dont tell me about their scouting director Mirabelli, even out nitwit scouting director is better than him." farrell went to boston? when that happen? steve lubrich and neal huntington are a key part of that scouting crew. with farrell is gone, that's the key cog, though.

Re # 60 I doubt money is a big issue for Maddux or most other MLB players when thinking about post season life. My rough guess is that Maddux will make 130 million plus in his career and other than greens' fees and two nice houses I don't think he spends that much. Also he started when salaries where MUCH lower, a middling pitcher who could last HALF as long as Maddux would make 30-50 million today. I think guys like Maddux just love the game too much to walk away. Many probably think about broadcasting but that is kind of limited ( and certainly not of interest to Maddux) It seems odd that guys who made tens of millions of dollars might be willing go ride buses in TX to work their way up in coaching or managing but I think many will. Maddux may well opt to take some kind of super instructor position in Vegas or LA for few years till his kids get older but I don't think he emotionaly capable of leaving baseball for good which I think is probably true of many other players.

ooh..farrell is boston's new pitching coach..weird. he hasnt really been on a field in 10 years. must have been a hell of an interview.

Crunch One last thing before I pack it in for the night I can't imagine why you would NOT see him as a coach ( or manager) He is literally famous his entire career for helping other players. The young pitchers and postition players in particular flock to him. I agree he will have to kick it up a notch when he is a postition to make decisions but I don't see any problem with that. Oddly enough I think he would very similar to Girardi

jessica...cuz he's also famous for the opposite. a good teacher is only as good as the amount of that information he can effectively put into another person's head. ultimately its up to the player to "get it" no matter how good the info is. its up to the coach/etc. to talk to the player in a way they can "get it."

World Series Neifi! sighting. After Craig Monroe's game two second inning homer Neifi gave him a hug before engaging him in one of his special secret hand shakes. Vintage Neifi!

Gotta agree with Jessica on Maddux. There is no doubt a coaching/managing job will be his to turn down at some point in his career.... and given his reputation for helping out young players, it seems likely he will eventually take one. If a few young players don't "get it" from Maddux, is really not the issue, as that is always the case. There are bound to be all kinds of different personalities on a baseball roster and its very unlikely one managers demeanor can fit all of those personalities. Given Maddux's career and reputation as an outstanding teacher of the game, I think it makes a lot more of sense seeing him as a great future coach than not. Simply because he is impatient or might not "mix well with the newschool baseball era" doesn't override his outstanding reputation as a mentor to his teammates, especially young players. And in my opinion, if you can't sit down a learn a few things from a guy like Maddux, what coach would you be willing to learn from?

I haven't been around lately, and this is totally off topic...but i figured that if anyone knew the answer TCR would be the place to find it... Anyways, i'm sure that many of you have been watching the Playoffs and i was curious if anyone else noticed that Kenny Rogers doesn't wear the same hat as everyone else (the New Era 59/50). And if there was any reason why, and if he had to petition MLB to do so...if anyone can help answer this i appreciate it (my roommates are from Michigan) thanks

RE: Teaching My experience has been that the degree to which one is a good teacher is related to the number of ways someone can explain something. I know nothing of Maddux's communication skills. I do know that Maddux is one of the smartest pitchers to ever pitch. If Murton doesn't understand Maddux's play-by-play/predictions, I would imagine that Greg would have many different avenues of clarifying why he feels that way. If Marshall didn't understand why Maddux would go ahange-up in situation X, I would thinl that Maddux would be able to approach the situation from another perspective that Marshall would understand. Like I said, I don't know a heckuva lot about Maddux, but he seems too smart to fail at teaching given his ability to dissect hitters over the years...

My offseason moves (in a perfect world): assuming a payroll increase to ~115 mil... 1) attempt a trade for Ichiro, a package including Jones and a couple pitching prospects (assuming deal could be done). If it can't another idea is grab lofton to play center and lead off and then Soriano plays LF/2b 2)Get Soriano for CF in FA (hoping he can handle the job there, if not you can always play him in LF if needed and use Murton as a 4th OF) 4) Get Schmidt and a back of the order sp 5) obviously extend Aramis If all this happens, Ichiro would cost us about 7 mil over the Jones contract, soriano about 16, Schmidt about 10 or so (I could be off on that), and Ramirez's extension would add about 4 mil. That ties up about 37/40 mil we supposedly have to spend. Use the rest on utility help. That would give this: Ichiro RF Soriano CF (LF/2b) Lee 1b Ramirez 3b Barrett C Murton LF Theriot 2b Izturis SS -Zambrano -Schmidt -Hill -FA back of order guy (some ideas were thrown out there in earlier posts) -Marshal/Guzman/Mateo... best of the remaining guys post-Ichiro trade -Prior can pitch if he's healthy Not bad I think... look at our 1-5... absolutely sick its all a dream and our pitching is still left a little weak but unless we go out and sign 2-3 top pitchers it will have some ?

Jessica, the reason that Maddux probably won't be a good coach is that great players rarely are.

CHAD: "the reason that Maddux probably won't be a good coach is that great players rarely are." Nice knee-jerk, unsubstantiated opinion, chad.

wait a second. that isn't knee jerk. it is merely empirical. it is, it seems to me, almost always the marginal player who becomes the best manager. look at this year's series for crying out loud. nothing says marginal like these two guys' major league career. for every great player who became a good to great manager, there are probable a dozen counter examples.

BUT, having written that, my hunch is that maddux is the exception.

I don't think Chad is off on this one, it's not even that great players can't become good coaches, I just think they have a hard time doing the job. Ted Williams, bird, magic, on and on, a lot of times these guys find things so easy, that's its hard for them to accept when someone else just doesn't "get it". They might be fine commuicators and motivators, the question is will they have the patience to deal with those who don't take to stuff right away or don't see the game as easily as they did. In baseball, Joe Torre is probably the best player to be a successful manager (I'm sure I'm missing somebody), but he was hardly one of the greatest players of all-times. Maddux might be the exception, we'll have to see. I reall can't think of too many HOF players who are at the top of the coaching ranks.

E-Man: <i>"Nice knee-jerk, unsubstantiated opinion, chad." What is unsubstantiated about his opinion? Can you name any GREAT players that were great coaches/managers?</i>

"Nice knee-jerk, unsubstantiated opinion, chad." Knee jerk? You accuse me of a knee jerk opinion by posting a knee jerk opinion. Good one. Next, why not accusem me of making an ad hominum attack all while saying that anything I say is false cause I'm a Communist. Get real.

chad is a communist.

I would say Mike Scioscia was a pretty gosh darn good baseball player. One of the best catcher's in the league there for a little bit, in my mind, anyway. He's also a pretty good skipper. Mike Hargrove was the human rain delay as a pitcher, but was still quite good. He's had some managerial success in the past. .290 career hitter who hit .300 or better four straight years. Neither of these guys are HOF'ers... but how many HOF'ers ever take a managerial job?

and his mother is a podiatrist.

That should not say Mike Hargrove was a pitcher. I am an idiot. It should say hitter.

cap anson? yeah, an oldie...should hold to modern standards, but hey...he was a cub. hehe

I am well aware the great players rarely make good managers or coaches but I do think Maddux is almost sure to be the exception IF he decides he wants to ( which again I think is likely). It almost irrelevent that he is great player, it is more important that he is a VERY smart player who has often been described by guys as the best teamate they ever had. You don't HAVE to get along with players to be a great manager but these days especially I think it is assett. As I said before I don't have any concerns about his ability to communicate, pick a line up, make in game decisions and even be ruthless when necessary, my main worry would be the transition from a guy cracking up a club house with fart jokes and beating the crap out everyone at poker to managing a team. Maddux's baseball mind is literally scary and if he ever does decide to manage I think it is going to be almost as much fun as watching him pitch PS when I get to work tomorrow afternoon I will try to dig out and post an hysterical bit from the Iowa paper last April recounting Maddux's influence on young players ( or did somebody post it then, I can never remember)

Clump a' dirt, bitches...

What is unsubstantiated about his opinion? Can you name any GREAT players that were great coaches/managers? Gee, would Don Mattingly meet with your approval? "Great" players don't "always" want to coach. They take their money and play golf or fish.

Oh - here's a couple more on the next team I looked at - I'm not gonna do this all night - just to throw a couple "GREAT" player names at you: Atl. Braves - 51 Roger McDowell, Pitching Coach 9 Terry Pendleton Let's see, three "Great" players (subjective, but probably 3 HFers out of three FIRST picks) on two teams I quickly selected. Yankees and Braves - coaching now - Mattingly, Pendelton, McDowell If you are too young to have seen these players, in my opinion, and most baseball writers, they'd be "Great".

"What is unsubstantiated about his opinion? Can you name any GREAT players that were great coaches/managers?" yeah, well, what about george w. bush??? huh? wasn't he like the andover manager or something? and look at him now!

<i>henry:</i> <i>it is merely empirical. it is, it seems to me, almost always the marginal player who becomes the best manager.</i> Trust me on this... I'd be willing to put money on it, some day Neifi Perez will be a manager. He'll probably be a good one, too.

E-Man: <i>"Gee, would Don Mattingly meet with your approval?" Yeah that would be one coach, but being the batting coach of a $225 million team isn't the hardest job in the world. But there are very few great players who have become good coaches and/or managers, thus making Chad's point very fair.</i>

<i>Yep mmhmm:</i> <i>-Prior can pitch if he's healthy</i> Sorry I'll shut up about Prior after this, but another reason I wouldn't take any sort of chance on him is what if he is healthy... who says he can be effective now? I mean we haven't seen him look comfortable on the mound since, what, 199_? Ok, maybe that's an exaggeration, but he seems so fragile, who knows what a 2-year hiatus will do to him.

And no, I would not consider either Pendelton nor McDowell even close to great. Of course it is subjective but between them they have 1 AS appearence.

I laughed out loud when I read that Mark Prior "might not be ready" for next season. Is he even hurt? Why the Cubs don't just straight up sue the pussy bastard for breach of contract I'll never know.

you're not saying that Mattingly, Mcdowell and Pendleton are HOF'ers are you? Mattingly is close, but um no. Robin Yount is coaching too somewhere and Ron Guidry and Mel Stottlemyre weren't too bad in their days either. Hell Dusty Baker wasn't too shabby as a player either. No one is saying it's impossible, but it's very rare, especially for those who saw and played the game at a completely different level. I'm talking guys like Maddux or Jordan or Bird or Magic or Clemens or Barry.

Rob, I like your wishlist. I would also include Loretta as a 2b that I would be happy with.

Thank you Rob. No one here listed one great player. Mattingly was the closest. But my point stands. Great players actually make poor managers. Why? Because the greats can't relate to the mortals of the world. Coaches were good or average players who had to work extra hard to succeed.

Prior looked pretty good last year pre-liner of the elbow. Actually he looked pretty f*** awesome. If you're sure you can make the playoffs and the World Series without Prior, go for it. Damn though if he goes on to a bunch of low 3 ERA seasons though and you don't make the playoffs those years and got nothing for him.. NO GM would take that risk and just let him go. NONE!!! Talent like his doesn't show up very often and if he's in your house, you go through the growing pains. Cubs are in the position this year where he doesn't need to be counted on with Maddux and Wood off the books. You leave the 5th spot in the rotation open for him or the cast of rookies. If you can talk a player into coming who would settle into a bullpen role if he does come back, you go for it.

http://tinyurl.com/ycwatc I put this in the other thread as we were talking about Billy Beane, but if you think Beane is an asshat, here's some real solid proof.

<b>Rob, I like your wishlist. I would also include Loretta as a 2b that I would be happy with.</b> If I'm going to tie up 2b for the next few years, I'd want a guy with some power, otherwise Theriot or E-Pat could proably do the job. I'd live with Loretta, but I don't think he's getting those double digit home run seasons back anytime soon. I'm not completely against Lugo either, although it wouldn't upset me in the least if he signs somewhere else.

Ray Durham, that bum is over the hill so far, he past Neifi on his way.

He's a real peach.

Brandon Sing and Luis Montanez are testing the minor leage FA waters along with Nic Jackson, fwiw. http://cubs.scout.com/2/581533.html

Beane that is.

yeah, age and durability are concerns with Durham, but when he does play he sure can hit. His D has taken a knock over the years though. 2 yr deal, 3rd yr option. $6-$7 mil range would intrigue me for Durham. With Theriot, Fontenot and Patterson in the mix, I think we could survive his annual trips to the DL. But if Marcus Giles is available, I'd be calling Schuerholz 5 times a day.

on the Kenny Rogers dirtball saga, don't know if anyone watched sportscenter afterwards, but he had the exact same "dirt" spot in all his previous playoff outings. Cheater!!!

http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2006/10/23/BUZZ.TMP Trammell is a wanted man!!! Could be up for manager duties in San Diego if Bochy goes to San Fran or go to San Fran as Bochy's bench coach. Supposedly has some other coaching offers as well. Supposedly McLaren took the Seattle job to get out of Piniella's shadow as he still wants a shot to manage. Look for him to put "Kick me" signs on Hargrove next year.

crazy idea here, but what about Showalter as bench coach? I wonder if him and Piniella are buddies. Doubt he'd take the job anyway, but he's always touted as a smart fella. good strategist.

It seemed pretty apparent to me that it was pine tar. It looked an awful like it and it's about the only substance of that color that would do any real good. A little pine tar on that middle finger will suddenly make that curve ball disgustingly unfair. Particularly on a chilly night. However, there are lots of other ways to hide it (which guys do quite often) without it being in the PALM OF YOUR PITCHING HAND. What a dumbass.

That and it seems a little odd to get a huge fucking clump of dirt on your pitching palm (where you would grip your change) and not notice it during your bullpen or during your warmups.

it's a little odd to get a clump of dirt in the EXACT SAME SPOT, 3 games in a row.

Who cares, they can't do anything to him.

For those so lucky to have HD, you could totally see a huge (what I believe) spot of pine tar on his cap behind his ear. Of course before every pitch he touched the brim then the spot. Fucking cheater.

It was a clump a' dirt end o' subject

no it wasn't end o'subject

It reminds me of the time in 2003 when the Cubs' Right Fielder's bat broke and cork flew out of it. Fucking cheater.

Frank Robinson, Dusty Baker, Joe Torre, Lou Piniella, Ray Knight, Bob Brenley, Mike Soscia, Davey Johnshon, Pete Rose in baseball all had some significant success. In basketball you've got a lot of players that were all-starish that made good head coaches, Rudy T, Isiah Thomas (coach, not GM. He is probably the worst GM in the history of sport), that guy from the lakers, even Phil Jackson was a solid player. Football you have Ditka for goodness sake, and Singletary is viewed as a future head coach. Chad, Rob G and a others who have chipped in, you're making the classic error of linking correlation to causation. The reason that there is not a long list of coaches who were hall of fame players, is not because they couldn't do it, it is because there's little desire by the majority of them. Most of them have already achieved the pinnacle of sport, why should they stay around to make a fifth of what they were making? However, if you're a career minor leaguer making $500,000 a year as a major league manager or $200,000 as a coach probably seems like a pretty good career path. For that reason I don't think Maddux will go into coaching or managing. What's he going to do, make a $100 million, win a World Series go to the Hall of Fame? Been there, done that. He'd be a helluva pitching coach.

<i>big john stud:</i> <i>It reminds me of the time in 2003 when the Cubs' Right Fielder's bat broke and cork flew out of it. Fucking cheater.</i> Or a time in '05, a certain Cardinals relief pitcher... Julian Tavarez. Difference? Sosa &amp; Tavarez really were cheating.

I was going to post exactly what Neal just posted, it's a matter of correlation/causality. Not only do many hall of famers/great players not want to manage, but compared to a few hundred great players, there are thousands upon thousands of mediocre to average guys who try to get into coaching or managing and fail miserably. We hear about it when a great player becomes a manager and then when he fails it will also be publicized. But when a nobody becomes a manager/coach we don't expect him to contribute much. For every Ted Williams that fails as a hitting coach, there will be a hundred Bruce Kimms who end up going nowhere. Remember that truly great players make up maybe only 1-2% of all baseball players on the planet. (It doesn't even matter if it's as high as 5%.) That said, I do believe there is something to the idea that some great players make bad coaches because they have natural abilities and cannot understand why other people can't learn as quickly as they do. I would say this applies to some percentage of players--but the same can be said for mediocre players who understand one aspect of the game quite well. But to say that great players don't make good coaches is a blatantly ignorant statement.

Billy Martin. Tony Larussa. Joe Torre. To name a few.

Tony LaRussa??? A grreat manager, sure, but a fringe player at best...

Felipe Alou had some good seasons

John McDonough was WGN last night and said the Cubs payroll at $ 100 million is good, if it's spent responsibly. Then he added that Hendry will have all of the company's "resources" in order to fix the team.

Gil Hodges, Frank Robinson, Larry Doby!!

<i>It was a clump a' dirt</i> <i>end o' subject</i> Big John--I don't know how you can still hold on to that after Baseball Tonight shows that Kenny had the same smudge on his hand in the <a href="http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/columns/story?columnist=wojciechowski_gene&amp;id=2635618" rel="nofollow">exact same place three games in a row</a> (watch the video). I was also skeptical of the claim at first, but these additional occurances make for a pretty convincing argument that both Kenny Rogers is a cheater and Tony LaRussa is asleep at the wheel.

This is real shocking: <i>Where is it that Daisuke Matsuzaka himself would like to land? Baseball sources say that if he could choose, he'd come to Seattle to play. The reasons are twofold -- center fielder Ichiro Suzuki and catcher Kenji Johjima. ... Matsuzaka, associates say, has long wanted to play with Ichiro, something that both men experienced in the World Baseball Classic last spring. Team Japan won the tournament with Matsuzaka winning the Most Valuable Player award and Ichiro serving as mentor to the younger men on the team.</i> <a href="http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/baseball/289646_seriesbok23.html" rel="nofollow">Full Story</a>

I think you are all missing the point on Kenny Rogers. They bugged him about it in what the 1st inning? Then he spent the rest of the game shutting down the Cardinals. Obviously whatever it was made no difference.

you named one new great player...Frank Robinson, and he hasn't shown to be a very good manager. Pete Rose wasn't a very good manager. Isiah Thomas was a horrible coach, stacked Pacers teams that didn't go anywhere. This shit ain't coming out of nowhere, neither me or Chad are the first to observe this. <b>But to say that great players don't make good coaches is a blatantly ignorant statement.</b> well to be clear, I'm talking a lot more about the manager role or head coach. And I'm talking the true greats of the game, the guys who saw the game and played it a different level. And yes, a lot has to do with not even wanting to do it, but a lot has to do with not having the patience to deal with why the 25th man is bitching about not getting playing time or why the media is taking him to task for not bunting or why these players aren't seeing the same things I am and why something so simple to me isn't getting through. And so far Real Neal has shown one player who fits and thats Mike Ditka. And he was a pretty horrible coach without the right coordinators (helluva a motivator though). And I said it very rare, not impossible. But go Maddux!!!

<b>Obviously whatever it was made no difference.</b> Still a cheater..... and who knows if he didn't just move it to somewhere else on his body. But no it doesn't matter other than I'm amazed he'd have the guts to do it in the playoffs.

How about Lenny Wilkens?

Sorry if this was posted already somewhere, but A-Ram's agent was on ESPN 1000 yesterday morning and said A-Ram would give a hometown discount "to a point." I guess we'll see what that point is.

And John Wooden? And Bill Sharman?

there you go, that's a much better example. Fine 2 guys so far and Cap Anson of course.

Frankie Frisch? Bob Lemon?..umm...Frank Chance? (lol)

Any speculation of us going after Moyer for a back of the rotation innings eater guy can be thrown out. Phils locked him up with a 2 year extension. http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2635825

C'mon TCR, GEORGE HALAS was a great player and a great coach. Three sport man in college. Rose Bowl MVP, NFL Player/Coach/Owner. NFL All-Pro, something like 7 NFL titles while coaching. NFL HOF. He was such a great athlete he also played a dozen games for the New York Yankees before hurting his hip.

Who replaced George Halas in the outfield for the Yankees? (If you believe the old legend)

"Pete Rose wasn't a very good manager." Pete Rose has a higher career winning percentage than the Current cubs manager: games/wins/losses 786 412 373 .525 Of course, so did Dusty Baker. Re: Kenny Rogers &amp; cheating. It was nice of LaRussa to go easy on him, but that might just be honor among thieves, er, cheaters. God knows LaRussa has had enough junkballers on his staffs over the years. Maybe if Rogers was doped up to the gills with HGH like Fat King Albert the Largeheaded, nobody would be squawking?

*For those so lucky to have HD, you could totally see a huge (what I believe) spot of pine tar on his cap behind his ear.* To me it looked like it was right on the bill of the cap, and he touched it a lot. Maybe the Cards should switch to black hats all the time so their junkballers wouldn't be so obvious.

Couple things... - Like I have said many times, cheating, pushing the limits/rules and going against the unwritten rules have been going on in baseball for decades and decades. It is part of baseball. It will never go away, just rear its head in a different form in the future. - Tito, haven't you heard there is no such thing as a "hometown discount"? (sarcasm) But seriously a hometown discount would put him about right at Lee's contract. If he would take a Lee contract, it should be signed today. - So the Phils signed Moyer to a 2-year deal Monday. So much for the alleged quiet period during the WS. Looks like announcements can be made (Moyer and Collective Bargaining Agreement), so I hope to hear the signing of ARam any day then. Let's go Hendry!!

Well, maybe George Halas, like Cap Anson, isn't well-known here and doesn't count as a great player who could manage or coach. Then how about LOU BOUDREAU, Hall of Fame player who was a player/manager and won the World Series in 1948. Managed for many years.

Ok I dug out the piece from last May's Iowa paper re Maddux working with young players and um sounds pretty good to me. I think most of us agree Maddux WOULD be the exception to the great players don't make grea coaches/ managers theory, if he chooses to pursue it. I think money is not an issue, though being on the road for more years while his kids are still young might be so I think he may opt for a steady gig in Vegas or LA for a couple of years and then hit the road. I just don't see him walking away from the game. From the Des Moines Register last May Wall shot: "When I got called up last year - in Houston - I asked him if I could catch his bullpen session if he didn't mind," Iowa catcher Geovany Soto said. "I thought that would be a real honor, catching a guy who's going to be in the Hall of Fame. "He said sure, so I went to get my stuff on, but he told me to leave my stuff alone. He said he'd throw the ball in the ground when he wanted to throw the ball in the ground, and that he'd tell me when it was coming. I was like all right, sir. "So I went out there with nothing but my glove, and on the last of his 26 or so pitches he throws the ball into a wall that separates the bullpen from the stadium seats. The ball hits the wall, the ball then bounces into the turf, and you're not going to believe this, but I don't even have to move my glove to catch it. It's a strike. I'm like wow. "He says thanks for catching me, kid." Video-Fanatic: "I remember my first year with the Braves," Iowa pitcher Kerry Ligtenberg said of 1997. "I was watching tape just to see myself on TV; I thought that was pretty cool, and he came in and he asked me what I was looking for. "I said I didn't know - that I was just watching tape of myself. He sat down with me and showed me some things mechanically to look at, and to watch how hitters react to some pitches." Advantage Maddux?: Umpires have been accused of expanding the strike zone when Maddux pitches. "That's not all together accurate," said major league umpire Tim McClelland , who lives in West Des Moines. "When his catcher sets up on the outside corner, he might get an extra 2 inches, because you know he's going to hit the glove." McClelland wasn't around the Principal Park batting cage Monday; he was in San Diego, where he worked the Padres' game against Arizona. During the telephone interview came a television report about the St. Louis Cardinals wondering if Maddux intentionally scuffs baseballs. "We regularly check the balls when they hit the dirt," McClelland said. The professor: "He's like a school teacher," said pitcher Michael Wuertz. "You sit there and talk to him on the bench, pick his brain and he'll somehow make you come up with the answer." Soothsayer: "Last year, we were in Cincinnati," Iowa shortstop Ryan Theriot said. "It's the fourth or fifth inning and I was just sitting in the dugout by myself, soaking it all in. (Maddux) told me I might as might as well start getting loose; he said that I was probably going to get into the game in the later innings because there'd probably be a left-handed pitcher in there. I went back and hit a few pitches in the indoor batting cage, and sure enough, it's the eighth inning, a lefty's pitching and (manager) Dusty Baker told me I was going to lead off the next inning. "Maddux looked at me and winked. He saw it coming."

NO, I didn't see anything on the bill of his cap but I did see him touch his bill and the side of his cap before every pitch.

"Mike Ditka. And he was a pretty horrible coach without the right coordinators (helluva a motivator though)." Yeah remember how they went to crap when he lost his Defensive coordinator to the Eagles... oh wait, that is the year they set the record for fewest points allowed, nevermind.

<i>a lefty's pitching and (manager) Dusty Baker told me I was going to lead off the next inning. "Maddux looked at me and winked. He saw it coming."</i> In other words, Dusty Baker's "brilliant moves" were entirely predictable.

Jessica, That is all lies. He doesn't know how to relate to other pitchers and young people. He couldn't possibly use the Socratic method of teaching, he didn't go to college!

Okay, maybe nobody remembers Lou Boudreau. Then how about JERRY SLOAN, six-time all-NBA defense as a player. The Bulls retired his number! And he's done pretty well as a coach since. 21 seasons, .599 winning percentage.

actually one of my favorite Maddux tid bits as he relishes beating the crap out of Boras at JEOPARDY. The guy with a "HS education" beating the college boy works for me.

CWTP, you make my point even more. Anyone who makes the All Defense team is a guy who understands hard work, practice and fundamentals. Sloan was a good player, he was not great. How about this sports fans: Teddy Ballgame. Career as a manager: .429

On further inspection, William's all time high single season BA is only .013 points lower than his win percentage as a manager.

This whole great player vs. great manager is just stupid. Maybe there haven't been a lot of guys who've been both, but if someone isn't very adept at managing, it's certainly not BECAUSE of the fact the guy was a great player. Perhaps the real reason is since it's very rare to be a great player and very rare to be a great coach, so then it's very rare f-ing squared to be a great both. I come here to talk baseball, not argue about stupid crap. Let's get back on topic, eh?

juan pierre?

Chad, You needed "further inspection" to subtract 406 from 429??? Quite the number cruncher, I see.

LOL. Touche, crunch. No, I'm on to how much of a pussy Mark Prior is now.

adam dunn?

Wait, OMG. 429 - 406 = 23 not 13 LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tobin was a good defensive coordinator too. On the other hand, the Saints years were pretty ugly. I thought Ditka was a great coach, but he had his limitiations. Anyway, you've guys have completely bastardized the point I was trying to make, it's not even worth trying to recover at this point. I'll stick to my point, the true greats of the games RARELY make good managers or head coaches.

Wait, OMG. 429 - 406 = 23 not 13 LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ---- Thats some funny stuff!!

So, Horatio, let me get this straight. You make fun of me cause of my 'further inspection' then make the same mistake I made. Also, when I said 'further inspection' I meant further inspection of Ted Williams career as a ballplayer and coach. Then comparing the two. Sure I made a quick math error, but no matter. I never claimed to be a real math guy.

Jerry Sloan was a good, hard-nosed player. He was not a great player, a la Bird, Jordan, Magic, etc. That's what this debate is about...great players, not merely good. Bird is really the only great player I can think of who was a good coach, and he got sick of it after three seasons.

<b>Bird is really the only great player I can think of who was a good coach, and he got sick of it after three seasons.</b> someone who gets what I'm saying. If Maddux wants to coach, I hope he does it in a Cubs uniform and I hope he's successful, i'm just doubting he'll have the patience for it.

And I think its that great player (all time greats) have a hard time relating to players who aren't as gifted.

re: Nic Jackson's free agency... remember 3 or 4 years ago when Jackson / Kelton / Dubois was supposed to be the "Cubs outfield of the future"? How many "of the future" guys actually go on to have a productive major league career? 1 in 10 might be too generous.

Over/Under. When do you think Prior is out of baseball? Bonus question. Because of what injury?

<i>Bird is really the only great player I can think of who was a good coach, and he got sick of it after three seasons.</i> I think the operative phrase is "I can think of." You're happily ignoring the historical evidence to the contrary, which is always a good idea when you're dead wrong.

"If Maddux wants to coach" Yes he wants to come in and talk to guys who've been told they have perfect mechanics, don't throw inside, and their scouting relies more on what ranking a hitter has on a PS2 game. Or he could golf everyday and make an appearance on ESPN every other week as an expert and not deal with the crap.

I don't think Maddux would have a problem with lack of talent so much as he would have a problem with ego. Unfortunately for all of us, he's an antiquity in terms of his team-first attitude and his single-minded focus on winning. I can't imagine he'd work well with the new breed of millionaire rookies.

Nate: <i>"How many "of the future" guys actually go on to have a productive major league career?" Good point. That is why I always cringe when Cubs fans talk about E. Patterson or Pie or whomever being the projected starter X amount of years from now and how we should be careful only to sign a guy for a year or so as to not block them.</i>

the new breed has to come from somewhere and a lotta money/people/time is invested in picking apart the chumps from the bums. once the "system" is in place it also serves to keep guys who arent/weren't draft-time high-end targets in the information loop. kelton was touted when he was a 3rd baseman after not initially being a high-target guy...he was the "keeper" when another poor-fielding 3rd was shifted to toronto in hinske. a year later kelton went from touted 3rd prospect to fringe LF prospect. meh...

just to keep the facts straight, Kelton was a 3b and Dubois didn't really show up until 2004/2005 on the prospect radar. I really don't recall them being the "future". Kelton got some buzz and Jackson definitely did. The Dubois fascination came out about end of 2004 and of course 2005.

"You're happily ignoring the historical evidence to the contrary, which is always a good idea when you're dead wrong." Please give us your list of "All Time Greats" that went on to be a successful coach.

I don't know, Rob, apparently I'm dead wrong, so don't align yourself just yet...

I think he's talking about Lou Boudreau, Cap Anson and George Halas that he mentioned. 2 of those guys were player/managers....

And all of them were around when 10 years of playing in the bigs didn't equate to a lifetime of financial security.

Yeah Boudreau, all time great. His .295 career batting average and 68 career home runs really puts him up there with the Ruths and Williams of the game. Cap Anson? Retired from baseball 110 years ago. Can you get a more current and relevant example. Same with George Halas. The only example I have seen so far is Pete Rose. We can debate how good of a manager he was but I will count him. And remember, there are exceptions to every rule.

<b>And all of them were around when 10 years of playing in the bigs didn't equate to a lifetime of financial security.</b> that just feeds into my argument to be honest....

That Japanese pitcher we're going to bid $15 million on is skipping the MLB-Japan tour because he got hit in the elbow. I wonder if the Cubs can group him with Prior, Zambrano and maybe two others to form the all 'I can't keep my elbow out of harm's way' rotation.

"that just feeds into my argument to be honest...." Well, how about this for an argument. There are 30 teams in MLB right now. Only one HoF player was a manager last year. Just average odds would be that he would have to manage for 30 years to win a championship. There are probably only 60 years at the most total of 'all time greats' being managers, so even if none had ever won a title, you're not really kicking the odds that much. If every hall of famer became a manager for 10 years, there would be plenty of WS winning Hall of Fame managers.

blah, blah, blah is what I read Real Neal.... the original thought on all this is Maddux would make a great coach cause he seems to know the game so much better than others and is known as a "great teacher" or whatever and some even saying he'd want to be a manager. I think the odds are against him for the various reasos I outlined. I hope he bucks the trend if he does end up in coaching. Mahalo!!

Alan Trammell was <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/cubs/cs-061023cubstrammell,1,1374240.story?coll=chi-sportstop-hed" rel="nofollow">officially hired</a> as bench coach. Two year deal.

Boudreau was a good player (never saw him, obviously), good enough to make the hall of fame. But if you look at his stats, 1948 was really his lone amazing year. As a manager, he finished first a grand total of once. So was he a good manager (.487 winning percentage)? Who knows? He doesn't really fit the discussion, IMHO.

My two bits on the Maddux as coach debate: I think he could be a good coach because so much of his game was preparation. He didn't have a cannon arm, so he relied on location and catching people off guard. Granted, his control at his prime was amazing, but he still had to work to do what he did because he couldn't just reach back and blow people away. He has a valuable skill to teach--how to break down film and attack individual hitters. I think the preparation and knowledge part is a key factor in a great player becoming a great coach. I can see someone like Michael Jordan having a hard time coaching because he was such a physical freak of nature. He was also as determined and tenacious as they came, and I don't doubt his preparation, but he still had physical tools few others can match. The baseball comparison would be a 100 mph fastball and the ability to actually get it over the plate. Those are things you can't teach, and I think MJ would have hard time relating to those that don't have his physical skills because they just can't do what he did, even if they had the same level of determination. How many of the truly greats were considered technicians? If there was a way to quantify it, I'd say the greats who where technicians probably made better coaches. Probably the same with lesser players...the technicians had to value learning highly in order to augment their otherwise mediocre physical skills. The result is someone with a method to teach instead of "I just know how to do it."

<i> Tito, haven't you heard there is no such thing as a "hometown discount"? (sarcasm) </i> Wow, I can't even go away for a couple of weeks with out Manny "Mr. Vendetta" Trillo taking a thinly veiled cheap shot while going out of his way to misquote me all at the same time. To be clear, Hometown Discounts certainly do exist, and I can list off lots of players who have taken less money to stay with their current team. But it is NOT a hometown discount when a player takes a market value contract that pays him more money that a free agent with similar stats who signed a contract during the same offseason. And what a shock, ARam's agent is asked about a theoretical hometown discount by a hometown media outlets, and he doesn't respond "fuck no, ARam's going to take every last dime he can." Its like his agent might want ARam to be liked if he does stay in Chicago, especially when we're talking about a player who already has a reputation of being lazy and selfish. Or maybe ARam's agent has really never heard of PR.

<i>Can you get a more current and relevant example.</i> I was only trying to give examples of player/managers with strong CHICAGO connections Chad, -- and coming up with examples is pretty easy. For instance, no one mentioned Hall of Famer and former Cub ROGERS HORNSBY who also had a long (if with mixed results for some pretty weak teams) 15 season managing career and won a World Series and two NL pennants. As a Cub fan, I'd take one pennant and one World Series win in my lifetime. So I'd say he was successful.

"and coming up with examples is pretty easy" No you haven't. Not one. Keep em coming. I asked for a relevant example. Perhaps someone who played or coached in say the last forty or fifty years. for example, who were the greatest players of the 50's 60's 70's? Mantle Reggie Mays Aaron Banks Musial Koufax Drysdale Gibson How did they fair as managers?

This is a late anaswer, but Bill Russell as a player/head coach/hall of famer was pretty good head coach who did both at the same time. Celtics.

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  • SF continues their kickass losing streak (6 games). WAS is suddenly back in the WC competition mix via SF's suck. SF 7.0 games back and WAS 7.5 games back is a hell of a distance for either team to climb at this point in the season.
  • Nice stuff tonight... Brewers sweep Pirates, 5-3 Giants losing to Rockies 9-2, 5th Dodgers losing 2-0 to SD, early. Corey Seager strikes out in 1st MLB at-bat.
  • Still taking quite a bit of time
  • I was running something that probably slowed it down. Should be much better now
  • Is it me, or is the site taking fo-r-ev-er to load?
  • Seems to be working. Unfortunately, I can't get it to work with anything other than plain text! Javascript from editor messes up the AJAX posting. Feedback welcome
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  • It's Magic. http://tinyurl.com/osa2pm2
  • "never been a fan of using closers in non-save situations." Tie game at home in the ninth, there can never be a save situation. So you're saying, don't use your best reliever today.
  • Sorry if this was covered in a different thread, but while I overall like this new design, the white type on the dark background is a killer. I may be in the minority on that. But again, nice job.
  • It was almost like Javy was saying, "see, O&B, same old Javy here." Guy's gotta learn you don't need to swing hard to knock a Chapman ball out of the park. Choke up, dude, follow Rizzo's lead.
  • The magic number is now 24.
  • Kershaw uses his 132nd pitch for his 15th K (Marlon Juice Byrd, with the tying run at 2nd), and the Dodgers sweep the Giants. Also, Pirates lose to the Brewers for the 5th straight time. So...with 30 to play, we are 6.5 up on SF (7 in loss column) and 8 up on the Nats, and still in contact (4.5 back) of the Pirates. Man, what a roller coaster the last 2 days -- fantastic stuff.
  • Schlitter still pitching for Iowa? Guess nobody wanted him?
  • JOHN B: Pierce Johnson and Rob Zastryzny were likely 2015 AFL candidates (I mentioned them as likely candidates to get assigned to the AFL in an article about the AFL last month) because they are starting pitchers who missed part of the season due to injuries and they need to accrue more innings.
  • I personally don't think managers use closers enough in tie games in the 9th. The mindset and adrenaline should be just like a save situation. You get the outs, you have a great chance of winning. You don't your team is screwed.