Lilly of the Field

Chicago media is reporting that Jim Hendry has made an offer to Toronto Blue Jays FA LHP Ted Lilly. The offer is believed to be somewhere in the neighborhood of $36-$40M over four years, comparable to the contract Jarrod Washburn got from the Seattle Mariners last off-season (4/37.5). However, Lillyís agent has said that the while an offer has been received from the Cubs, there are other MLB clubs interested in his client (believed to be NYY, TOR, and SF), and while he has been impressed by the moves the Cubs have made so far, Lilly has not made a decision yet. One thing pretty clear is that if Hendry has indeed offered Lilly $9M or $10M per year, then itís EXTREMELY unlikely that Hendry will have any further conversations about Jason Schmidt. If the $15M in 2007 payroll that would have been needed to sign Schmidt is instead split two-ways, and if Lilly gets about $9M of it, then figure Hendry will be able to spend about $6M of ìSchmidt Moneyî on another rotation starter, possibly by acquiring Jake Westbrook or Jason Jennings (both of whom make about $6M in 2007) via trade, or by signing a veteran ìswing-manî (starter/reliever) like Miguel Batista (also likely to get around $6M per year). So who exactly is Ted Lilly? Well, Ted Lilly is the poor man's Barry Zito. Like Zito (and Rich Hill), Lilly is an extreme fly ball pitcher who relies on pop-ups and strikeouts to get his outs, and when he is on his game and when the wind isn't blowing out at Wrigley or when he isn't pitching in a bandbox like the parks in Houston, Philadelphia, and Cincinnati, he can roll through a lineup, racking up Ks (Lilly was 7th in the A. L. in K/IP last season). However, while Zito (and Hill) frequently will give his club seven strong innings and sometimes pitch into the eight or ninth, Lilly doesn't do that. He is NOT a "horse" and he is NOT an "innings eater." In a typical start, Lilly throws about 17-18 pitches per inning (second-most P/IP in MLB last year, and second only to another presumed Hendry target, Gil Meche) and because he usually ìhits the wallî at about 90-100 pitches, he has trouble getting through the sixth inning. So the bullpen usually gets an early call when Lilly is on the mound. I consider Lilly to be a lower-half #2 or upper-half #3 starter, a decent middle of the rotation guy, but I would be more enthused about Lilly if the Cubs didnít already have some IP challenged starters (Mark Prior and Wade Miller) and a Zito-clone (Rich Hill) in the rotation. I believe Lilly is a better choice and a class above Meche, Marquis, Redman, et al, but he is not Jason Schmidt and neither is he Vicente Padilla. If the Cubs do manage to sign Lilly, the 2007 starting rotation would look like this (pending any additional acquisitions): 1. Zambrano 2. Lilly 3. Hill 4. Prior/Miller/Marshall 5. Miller/Marshall/Guzman/Mateo/Ryu
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Comments

Guess I don't hate that. 10 mil/year seems like an awful lot. I also thought Glavine getting 10 was an awful lot. If Lilly ends up signing, I suppose that makes the staff better. That's sort of the goal, I reckon.

I kinda figured either Lilly or Meche would end up in the rotation. Looking at the numbers for both, I suppose it's 6 way, half dozen the other.

Schmidt would still be nice. I'm not terrificly enthused, but an improvement is an improvement, however.

So I guess the question is whether our team would be better off spending $15 million on Jason Schmidt or $15 million + trade bait on Lilly + Jennings/Westbrook.

Arizona Phil:
If the Cubs do manage to sign Lilly, the 2007 starting rotation would look like this (pending any additional acquisitions):

1. Zambrano
2. Lilly
3. Hill
4. Prior/Miller/Marshall
5. Miller/Marshall/Guzman/Mateo/Ryu

Wow. Then when Lilly goes down with shoulder soreness, we'll have the '06 rotation. Let's hope there's more in the works than just Lilly.

They will get two starters before ST.

They will not go into next year like they did last year. My confidence is growing in this new regime.

jacos:
My confidence is growing in this new regime.

Someone sounds tired. Up late last night? ;)

Jim Hendry can now sign Cliff Floyd without losing a selection in next year's Rule 4 Draft (June Draft). The Mets declined to offer salary arbitration to Floyd (who is rated as a Type "A" free-agent), so any team signing him will not lose a draft pick.

Per the new CBA, yesterday was the deadline for MLB clubs to offer arbitration to their Type "A" and Type "B" free-agents if they wish to receive draft choice compensation. Clubs are permitted to re-sign any of their own free-agents even if they do not offer arbitration, they just will not receive draft choice compensation if the player signs with a new team.

Compensation for losing a Type "A" free-agent is a draft choice from the signing team (lower half of 1st round or upper half of 2nd round) AND an MLB "sandwich pick" between the 1st and 2nd round (usually somewhere 31-40 overall pick), and compensation for losing a Type "B" FA is an MLB "sandwich pick" between the 1st and 2nd round only (and the picks are slotted after all Type "A" sandwich picks have been allocated), and so signing a Type "B" FA does not cost the signing team a draft pick.

The following MLB free-agents were offered arbitration, and thus a club losing any of these players will receive a compensation draft pick or draft picks (depending on whether the player is a Type "A" or Type "B" FA):

ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS
Miguel Batista, RHP - TYPE "B"
Craig Counsell (signed with MIL) - TYPE "B"

ATLANTA BRAVES
Danys Baez, RHP (signed with BAL) - TYPE "A"

BOSTON RED SOX
Keith Foulke, RHP - TYPE "B"
Alex Gonzalez, SS (signed with CIN) - TYPE "B"

CHICAGO CUBS
Juan Pierre, OF (signed with LAD) - TYPE "B"

CINCINNATI REDS
Rich Aurilia, 3B (signed with SF) - TYPE "A"
Scott Schoeneweis, LHP - TYPE "B"

DETROIT TIGERS
Jamie Walker, LHP (signed with BAL) - TYPE "B"

LOS ANGELES ANGELS OF ANAHEIM
Adam Kennedy, 2B (signed with STL) - TYPE "B"

LOS ANGELES DODGERS
Julio Lugo, INF - TYPE "A"

MILWAUKEE BREWERS
Tony Graffanino, INF - TYPE "A"

NEW YORK METS
Chad Bradford, RHP (signed with BAL) - TYPE "A"
Roberto Hernandez, RHP (signed with CLE) - TYPE "A"
Guillermo Mota, RHP - TYPE "B"

NEW YORK YANKEES
Ron Villone, LHP - TYPE "B"

OAKLAND A'S
Frank Thomas, 1B-DH (signed with TOR) - TYPE "B"
Barry Zito, LHP - TYPE "A"

PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES
David Dellucci, OF (signed with CLE)- TYPE "A"

ST. LOUIS CARDINALS
Mark Mulder, LHP - TYPE "B"
Jeff Suppan, RHP - TYPE "A"

SAN DIEGO PADRES
Alan Embree, LHP - TYPE "B"
Ryan Klesko, 1B-OF - TYPE "B"
Chan Ho Park, RHP - TYPE "B"
Dave Roberts, OF (signed with SF) - TYPE "A"
Todd Walker, INF - TYPE "A"
David Wells, LHP - TYPE "B"
Woody Williams, RHP (signed with HOU) - TYPE "A"

SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS
Moises Alou, OF (signed with NYM) - TYPE "A"
Jason Schmidt, RHP - TYPE "A"
Mike Stanton, LHP (signed with CIN) - TYPE "B"

SEATTLE MARINERS
Gil Meche, RHP - TYPE "B"

TEXAS RANGERS
Mark DeRosa, IF-OF (signed with CUBS) - TYPE "B"
Carlos Lee, OF (signed with HOU) - TYPE "A"
Gary Matthews, Jr, OF (signed with LAA) - TYPE "A"

TORONTO BLUE JAYS
Frank Catalanotto, OF (signed with TEX) - TYPE "A"
Ted Lilly, LHP - TYPE "B"
Justin Speier, RHP (signed with LAA) - TYPE "A"

WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Jose Guillen, OF (signed with WAS) - TYPE "B"
Alfonso Soriano, OF (signed with CUBS) - TYPE "A"

=================================

TYPE "A" FREE-AGENTS NOT OFFERED ARBITRATION:
Ronnie Belliard, 2B (STL)
Barry Bonds, OF (SF)
Joe Borowski, RP (FLA)
Roger Clemens, SP (HOU)
J. D. Drew, OF (LAD)
Cliff Floyd, OF-1B (NYM)
Aaron Fultz, RP (PHI) - signed with CLE
Eric Gagne, RP (LAD)
Luis Gonzalez, OF (AZ)
Eddie Guardado, RP (CIN)
Dustin Hermanson, RP (CHW)
Aubrey Huff, 3B-1B (HOU)
Mike Lieberthal, C (PHI)
Mark Loretta, 2B (BOS)
Greg Maddux, SP (LAD)
Andy Pettitte, SP (HOU)
Mike Piazza, C (SD)
David Riske, RP (CHW)
Rudy Seanez, RP (SD)
Russ Springer, RP (HOU)
Mike Timlin, RP (BOS)
David Weathers, RP (CIN)

================================

TYPE "B" FREE-AGENTS NOT OFFERED ARBITRATION:
Rod Barajas, C (TEX)
Jeromy Burnitz, OF (PIT)
LaTroy Hawkins, RP (BAL) - signed with COL
Rick Helling, RP (MIL)
Orlando Hernandez, SP (NYM)
Shea Hillenbrand, 1B (SF)
Kenny Lofton, OF (LAD)
Jason Marquis, SP (STL)
Brian Meadows, RP (FLA)
Kent Mercker, RP (CIN)
Jose Mesa, RP (COL)
Trot Nixon, OF (BOS)
Tomo Ohka, SP (MIL)
Darren Oliver, RP (NYM)
Arthur Rhodes, RP (PHI)
Jeff Weaver, SP (STL)
Preston Wilson, OF (STL)

Is it any wonder the Cubs are after Lilly? He's the protypical Cub pitcher. Over-priced. Relies on the K to get outs. Throws too many pitches to complete six innings and can't make it through a season without major time off to rest his arm.

Oh yeah, and his ceiling is 15 wins.

The Cubs are going to need to color-code the towels next year.

Levine noted on his radio show today that he looks for the Lilly deal to get done by Tues or Wed at the latest.

An interesting note from his show today noted that only $ gained from the Cubs Comcast deal is put towards Cub operations. Meaning any ad dollars WGN revenue or national rights (ESPN/FOX/satellite/XM)revenue go to TribCo.

Also, CLEV signed Roberto Hernandez and Aaron Fultz today making it less likely any trade involving Jake Westbrook will arise unless they're stupid enough to want Dempster...they're also looking at JoBo to fill that role however.

I'm not thrilled with Lilly, particularly as a #2. However, it seems like everyone is looking for pitching and there are very few good FA pitchers available.

Hendry is kind of in a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" situation. He needs to make a move for more starting pitching, but none of the options are very attractive. Even Schmidt comes with a high price tag, a declining fast ball and injury concerns.

I expect the Cubs to come out of the Winter Meetings with two new starting pitchers. I think one will be a FA and the other will be obtained through a trade. However, I doubt that the two pitchers will make everyone happy.

wow, lilly was traded WITH westbrook to the yankees for hideki irabu....ouch for the expos

March 17, 2000: Sent by the Montreal Expos to the New York Yankees to complete an earlier deal made on December 22, 1999. The Montreal Expos sent players to be named later and Jake Westbrook to the New York Yankees for Hideki Irabu. The Montreal Expos sent Ted Lilly (March 17, 2000) and Christian Parker (March 22, 2000) to the New York Yankees to complete the trade.

then westbrook, ledee and zach day went from the yankees to the indians for david justice.

day went to the expos for milton bradley, straight up.

the bradley went to the dodgers for a pile of nothing, being an asshole sometimes can do that.

The good thing about the Cubs pitching staff is that there are a whole bunch of "question" players. Miller should be healthy. Prior should be healthy as well. Wood might be able to pitch sometime next season. Even if we get one of those guys back in good health, we should be fine. If you cant get a Schmidt or Zito in the next month or so, then you wait it out and see. I think a rotation with either Prior or Miller healthy would be better than the Cardinals or Astros. And picking up Cliff Floyd would be perfectly fine too. Give him some periodic time off and try not to burn him out.

Im optimistic about next year.

Everyone seems to complain about the Trib overspending on Soriano. I dont care. Overspend. Even if Soriano is way overrated, he is better than a great many players and will be fun to watch. I think the lineup is better with him in it and should be really exciting next summer.

Id be happy with Murton/Jones in LF, Soriano in center and Floyd in right. Defense be damned.

Why are we talking about the 2007 payroll being approx. $115M? The luxury tax cap next year is $148.5 so if McDonough isn't blowing smoke about "taking the Cubs to the World Series" then why only $15M left to spend? I can't see any reason for them not to end up between $120-125M for next year........after pitching, they still need a backup IF (unless that's Cedeno) and at least 2 OF--hopefully all who can swing left-handed. Is there some prior story detailing what next year's budget is definitively?

"Hendry is kind of in a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" situation. He needs to make a move for more starting pitching, but none of the options are very attractive. Even Schmidt comes with a high price tag, a declining fast ball and injury concerns."

Sweet Lou,

I agree with that comment 100%. None of these options are going to make everyone happy. Negatives are going to be found whether its contract length, contract price, injury concerns, etc.

However, SOME moves have to be made. I guess it would be asking to much to not spend all our time focusing on the negatives that would come along with any one of these moves and instead focusing on the positives.

#8 of 9: By Bogey (December 2, 2006 01:12 PM)
Also, CLEV signed Roberto Hernandez and Aaron Fultz today making it less likely any trade involving Jake Westbrook will arise unless they're stupid enough to want Dempster...they're also looking at JoBo to fill that role however.

==========================

BOGEY: With Jake Westbrook a FA after next season, I would think the Indians would be interested in moving him if they can get at least one young rotation starter back in the deal. While signing Hernandez and Fultz might mean they would probably have less interest in a Will Ohman or a Neal Cotts, they probably would still have a strong interest in Sean Marshall. And don't be so sure they wouldn't take Dempster back as part of the deal, either.

Cubs fans are understandably frustrated with Dempster off his poor performance this past season, but he did save 33 out of 36 games in 2005, and a lot of closers are known to be every-other-year type guys.

Westbrook and Dempster are making about the same salary in '06, so a Dempster/Marshall for Westbrook deal doesn't seem terribly out of mind from the Tribe POV, especially if the Cubs include a third young pitching prospect in the deal (somebody like Mark Holliman).

Phil,

It just might be however, that the Indians actually want to win this year and are fine with parting with Westbrook for a draft pick next year or dealing him at the deadline should they fall out of contention.

Sometimes these middle market clubs do want to win now rather than continue to trade their best chances for prospects.

I'm with bogey, unless the tribe are blown away with an offer for Westbrook, I think they're keeping him and going for a playoff spot next year.

Michael: I respectfully STRONGLY disagree with you. Platooning Murton is going to strongly hinder his development, and will also lower his trade value (if we aren't going to play him, may as well trade him for some pitching). Floyd should be nothing more than a bench player. He has some pop, but is an injury waiting to happen--even moreso than Drew. He also isn't a great LF, so putting him in RF would be a colossal mistake, especially since Wrigley Field, is considered one of the more difficult RFs in baseball.

Floyd as a bench player for $3 MM or so + incentives is ok (although I'd rather pony up a little more money and bite the bullet on Gonzo, even though he makes Jones look like Nolan Ryan). I think that we're going to have to either move Murton as part of a package for a SP (I don't want it to happen, though), or trade Jones for some SP. Kenny Lofton should then be pursued to keep CF warm for Pie.

Indians probably are in no hurry to trade Westbrook, so for us to get him, we'll have to dearly overpay for him. We may be better suited going elsewhere for our SP needs. Florida and Pittsburgh could fit the bill, IMO.

#15 of 15: By CL (December 2, 2006 01:45 PM)
Phil,

It just might be however, that the Indians actually want to win this year and are fine with parting with Westbrook for a draft pick next year or dealing him at the deadline should they fall out of contention.

Sometimes these middle market clubs do want to win now rather than continue to trade their best chances for prospects.

I'm with bogey, unless the tribe are blown away with an offer for Westbrook, I think they're keeping him and going for a playoff spot next year.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

CL: You could be right. It's impossible for us to know what the Indians are thinking, although from the Tribe POV, getting a closer (Dempster) and a replacement starter (Marshall) and possibly a young rotation starter prospect (somebody like Holliman) for Westbrook now might accomplish both objectives (that is, get something of value for Westbrook AND improve the big club for '07).

Only time will tell. We'll see. (Same goes for Jason Jennings, BTW).

"...none of the options are very attractive."

Actually, Padilla is the more attractive, as I keep professing and may have more upside than any of the "Tier Two" guys.

He is still relatively young, pitches innings, and has nasty stuff that would do well in Wrigley.

And, in eching Ryan, abive, Cliff Floyd at this stage is ONLY a bench player/spot player, in my opinion. His injuries and production has been steadily declining.

He would be a nice "story" coming home - especially if he hits a walk-off HR to win an important game in a pennant chase, but realistically, the guy is at the end of the line.

So I guess the question is whether our team would be better off spending $15 million on Jason Schmidt or $15 million + trade bait on Lilly + Jennings/Westbrook.

Considering there is no guarantee the Cubs can even go after Jennings/Westbrook, I'd strongly support the first option (i.e. Schmidt). The Rockies have supposedly asked for Rich Hill in exchange for Jennings, which would get us nowhere, and Westbrook will cost us a chunk of our good relievers and maybe an outfielder or prospect as well.

I'd favor a Cliff Floyd signing, as it's probable that our outfielders don't all hold up next year. He'd give us some added pop that will be nice, especially if Jones is sent packing.

Phil,

Very true. They do need a closer. I don't believe I'm overstating at all when I say that the coming Winter Meetings are going to be the busiest we've seen in years.

For those of you who want to look ahead this far, here are the Top 50 post-2007 MLB FA (as of now):

STARTING PITCHERS:
Kris Benson
Mark Buehrle
Chris Carpenter
Doug Davis
Freddy Garcia
Tom Glavine
Livan Hernandez
Jason Jennings
Randy Johnson
Kenny Rogers
Curt Schilling
John Smoltz
Tim Wakefield
Jake Westbrook
Carlos Zambrano

CLOSERS:
Trevor Hoffman
Joe Nathan
Mariano Rivera

SET-UP RELIEVERS:
Scott Linebrink

CATCHERS:
Michael Barrett
Jason Kendall
Paul LoDuca
Jorge Posada
Ivan Rodriguez

FIRST BASEMEN:
Sean Casey

SECOND-BASEMEN:
Craig Biggio
Luis Castillo
Marcus Giles
Mark Grudzielanek
Jeff Kent

SHORTSTOPS:
David Eckstein
Michael Young

THIRD-BASEMEN:
Brandon Inge
Corey Koskie
Mike Lowell

LEFT-FIELDERS:
Moises Alou
Eric Byrnes
Adam Dunn
Geoff Jenkins
Brad Wilkerson

CENTER-FIELDERS:
Milton Bradley
Mike Cameron
Torii Hunter
Andruw Jones
Corey Patterson
Vernon Wells

RIGHT-FIELDERS:
Bobby Abreu
Jermaine Dye
Shawn Green
Ichiro Suzuki

Other than Schmidt, Padilla probably tops my pitching wishlist, as well, but I don't think the Cubs will go after him. The guy's apparently not the greatest clubhouse presence, and I doubt Piniella wants to put up with his behavior. His groundballs would be beautiful in Wrigley and elsewhere, however.

The rumored Jones for Jennings trade is looking better and better. Do it. I don't want Lilly or Meche for the money they're going to demand. Cubs have a half-dozen young pitchers that are borderline prospects, surely Hendry can swing a second trade to bring in another veteran starter to go with Jennings.

What starters that are decent could be available in trade? We can offer any of Marshall, Marmol, Mateo, Ryu, Guzman, Novoa and Ohman in exchange.

Tim Hudson? Freddy Garcia? Javier Vazquez?

Eric: You're kidding with Vazquez, right? Ditto for Hudson; I don't wanna be on the hook for the last 2 years of that backloaded contract.

We need a #2 starter and a #4 starter. If we get Lilly, there's the #4 starter. We would need to either increase the payroll to get Schmidt, who may not even want to come here, or trade for a #2. If the Indians aren't willing to deal Lee, Sabathia, or Westbrook, then we would have to go after an Olsen, Duke, Johson, Sanchez type. The bottom line is that we would need to either trade with someone who has an excess of pitching, like the Pirates or White Sux (and the only starter of theirs I'd have any remote interest in is Garcia), or someone who needs to make a trade for payroll/arbitration purposes. Florida fits that bill, although the only pitcher of their who would cost them is Willis, who I would also gladly take off their hands for a package of young pitchers.

If we do in deed sign Lilly, though, signing Jennings simply means that the Cubs are sealing their own fate of mediocrity in the starting rotation.

Eric the Great:
The rumored Jones for Jennings trade is looking better and better.

Andrew:
I'd favor a Cliff Floyd signing, as it's probable that our outfielders don't all hold up next year. He'd give us some added pop that will be nice, especially if Jones is sent packing.

If an outfielder gets traded it will probably be Murton. I can't see the Cub's, who are looking to add not subtract a left-handed bat, trading any kind of left-handed power.

Anyone think CF is Pie's job to lose starting in '06? I think it is... if he stinks it up in ST, we might have a:

LF Soriano
CF Jones
RF Floyd

Until Pie is ready, then:

LF Soriano
CF Pie
RF Jones (Floyd to bench)

Either way Floyd makes a lot of sense and I don't think Jones is expendable at all.

Hudson, Garcia and Vazquez seem to be much better options than those more commonly discussed lately. Can we get some weigh in on the viability of obtaining any of these three? What are the issues?

Otherwise my list would be in the following order:
Padilla, unless he really is a clubhouse drag.
Westbrook,
Lilly, and close behind...
Jennings/Meche

"Eric: You're kidding with Vazquez, right? Ditto for Hudson; I don't wanna be on the hook for the last 2 years of that backloaded contract." --RYAN

Neither of these contracts is much more than Schmidt money, right?

#23 of 28: By Eric the Great (December 2, 2006 02:26 PM)
The rumored Jones for Jennings trade is looking better and better. Do it. I don't want Lilly or Meche for the money they're going to demand. Cubs have a half-dozen young pitchers that are borderline prospects, surely Hendry can swing a second trade to bring in another veteran starter to go with Jennings.

What starters that are decent could be available in trade? We can offer any of Marshall, Marmol, Mateo, Ryu, Guzman, Novoa and Ohman in exchange.

Tim Hudson? Freddy Garcia? Javier Vazquez?

========================

ERIC THE GREAT:

A while back, I posted a list of pitchers possibly available in a trade this off-season. I have added Mark Buehrle to the list because the White Sox exercised their club option for '07, which was not known at the time I first posted this list.

NOTE: Player's age listed is what it will be as of Opening day 2007

RHP:

Kris Benson (BAL) ñ age 32
2007 - $7.5m
2008 - $7.5m (or $500K buy-out)

Kelvim Escobar (LAA) ñ age 30
2007 ñ $8.5m
2008 ñ $9m
2009 - $9.5m (FA after 2009)

Freddy Garcia (CHW) ñ age 30
2007 - $10m (FA after 2007)

Jon Garland (CHW) - age 27
2007 - $10m
2008 - $12m (FA after 2008)

Tim Hudson (ATL) ñ age 31
2007 - $6m
2008 - $13m
2009 - $13m
2010 - $12m (or $1m buy-out)

Jason Jennings (COL) ñ age 28
2007 ñ $6.5m (FA after 2007)

Jon Lieber (PHI) ñ age 36
2007 - $7.5m (FA after 2007)

Matt Morris (SF) ñ age 32
2007 - $9.5m
2008 - $9.5m
2009 - $9m (or $1m buy-out)

Javier Vazquez (CHW) ñ age 30
2007 - $12.5m (AZ pays $3m & NYY pay $3m of it, so it's really $6.5m)
2008 - Salary Arbitration (FA after 2008)
NOTE: Because he demanded and received a trade a year ago per rights granted in the CBA, he cannot be a FA again until after 2008.

Jake Westbrook (CLE) ñ age 29
2007 - $6.1m (FA after 2007)

LHP:

Mark Buehrle (CHW) - age 28
2007: $9.5M (FA after 2007)

C. C. Sabathia (CLE) ñ age 26
2007 - $8.75m
2008 - $9m (FA after 2008)
NOTE: Up to $3m in performance bonuses each year 2007 & 2008

Dontrelle Willis (FLA) ñ age 25
2007 ñ Salary Arbitration
2008 - Salary Arbitration
2009 - Salary Arbitration (FA after 2009)
NOTE: Made $4.35m in 2006 (was post-05 Super Two)

I don't want Vazquez at all. Period. Even if the Sox paid part of his salary (which, by today's market, isn't that high). He has pretty good stuff, but doesn't know how to pitch. And I feel that he never will. He's prone to meltdowns, as everyone should have seen last year with the Sux.

Schmidt's contract would cost more than the last 2 years of Hudson's, which I believe are $13 MM each, but Schmidt is better than Hudson.

Wow, even worse than I thought. 3 years left, 2 for $13 MM and 1 for $12 MM. Thanks for the info, AZ Phil.

Thanks Phil. Vazquez and Hudson both appear to be comparable options to Schmidt with Garcia appearing cheaper. Where are each of them on the realistic meter?

Not a big fan of Vasquez either, but what about Hudson? Why has his stock dropped recently, other than his struggles last year?

Floyd makes sense just because he is a left handed bat? Why in the hell would we want to downgrade to Cliff Floyd from Matt Murton?

It is bad enough Jones can't hit lefties to save his life, lets bring in another player who can't hit lefties and while were at might play 100 games if we pray really hard. (Only 2 seasons out of 14 seasons has he played over 150 games)

Dude, Floyd is done. Physically he is a train wreck, he is finished.

I'm with MikeC on the Murton vs Floyd question. I'm hoping/dreaming that Murton will start somehow and Floyd will come off the bench even if Jones doesn't stay a Cub.

If an outfielder gets traded it will probably be Murton.

I'd tend to agree, although I read on ESPN Insider the other day that a Cubs source said they're more likely to deal Jones than Murton. And there's also been a lot of talk about "building a market" for Jones.

While pitching should be our priority, I hope Hendry makes inquiries at the winter meetings into both Vernon Wells and Crawford. Both guys are going to cost us some talent, but how awesome would they be in CF?

BTW, since I posted the list last Summer, the situation has changed somewhat. The starting pitcher market has gone bull (salaries have gone up about 20-25%), as have the attitudes of some of the clubs that would be involved in trading some of these pitchers (for instance, BAL and SF do not appear to be rebuilding, contrary to what I thought might happen).

So I no longer believe Benson, Escobar, Lieber, Morris, Sabathia, Vazquez, or Willis would be available in a trade. Their salaries are almost cheap by comparison to what's out there on the free-agent market, and so their clubs would not appear to have any motivation to trade those guys.

But the others (Buehrle, Garcia, Garland, Hudson, Jennings, and Westbrook) should be available, either because the club appears to be rebuilding (ATL), or because the club actually has an excess of rotation starters (CHW), or because the pitcher will be a FA after next season (Garcia, Jennings, and Westbrook).

I also think it is VERY unlikely that any of the pitchers I listed in my GROUP #3 pitchers (cheap young studs still on the come) in my article yesterday would be available in a trade, even at virtually any price. I'm talking about this group:

Chad Billingsley, LAD
Joe Blanton OAK
Boof Bonser, MIN
Dave Bush, MIL
Daniel Cabrera, BAL
Matt Cain, SF
Juan Cruz, AZ
* Zach Duke, PIT
* Jeff Francis, COL
* Tom Gorzelanny, PIT
* Cole Hamels, PHI
Clay Hensley, SD
Felix Hernandez, SEA
* Rich Hill, CUBS
Chuck James, ATL
Josh Johnson, FLA
* Scott Kazmir, TB
* Noah Lowry, SF
* Paul Maholm, PIT
John Maine, NYM
Ricky Nolasco, FLA
* Scott Olsen, FLA
Anthony Reyes, STL
Anibal Sanchez, FLA
Ervin Santana, LAA
* Joe Saunders, LAA
Ian Snell, PIT
* Jeremy Sowers, CLE
Chien-Ming Wang, NYY
Jered Weaver, LAA

Chad Bradford is a Type A FA? What are the guys at Elias smoking?

Dusty Baker is no longer managing the Cubs, so I think if Hendry signs Cliff Floyd, it would be to replace John Mabry as the back-up 1B-LF-LHPH, not to replace Matt Murton as the #1 LF.

I would imagine Hendry will probably offer Floyd a one-year deal for about $3M plus incentives based on PA, in case he ends up having to play more than anticipated due to an injury to D-Lee or to Murton. And if Floyd doesn't want that kind of a deal, or if he can get more money to be a DH in the A. L.? Then Hendry just won't sign him.

But Hendry and Floyd go way back (Hendry recruited Floyd when Hendry was the Head Baseball Coach at Creighton, and Floyd would have gone to Creighton if he hadn't gotten a big bucks bonus out of high school from the Expos), so if Floyd is cool with the idea that his career is winding down and that his role has changed, then he very well might want to come home to Chicago and to an organization run by his ol' pal Jimbo.

And I don't know about you, but I would consider Cliff Floyd an upgrade over John Mabry, especially now that it will not cost the Cubs a draft pick to sign him. (Floyd is a Type "A" FA, but he was not offered arbitration by the Mets).

I don't love the idea of Cliff Floyd but Mike, you're wrong about him not hitting lefties. He hits them well enough. .272/.330/.466 against lefties while he's .281/.368/.496 against righties. My only problem with him is inability to stay healthy. I certainly wouldn't mind him on our bench.

Cliff Floyd is a definite upgrade over Mabry but at $3M/yr it points out that they're willing to pay 3x last yr's output for their #1 lefty off the bench/platoon OF-1B.

God Bless John McDonough...otherwise we would be resigning Mabry or Hollandsworth again with the spin that this time "he is healthy".

#40 of 40: By cubster (December 2, 2006 03:30 PM)
Cliff Floyd is a definite upgrade over Mabry but at $3M/yr it points out that they're willing to pay 3x last yr's output for their #1 lefty off the bench/platoon OF-1B.

God Bless John McDonough...otherwise we would be resigning Mabry or Hollandsworth again with the spin that this time "he is healthy".

=================================

CUBSTER: Besides being the #1 LHPH and getting an occasional spot-start in lF against a tough RHP starter, I think if the Cubs sign Floyd it will be as an insurance policy in case something happens to D-Lee (perish the thought, AZ PHIL!).

I just don't think the Cubs want to get themselves into another situation again this year where if D-Lee goes DL, the only options are Mabry, Blanco, Hoffpauir, or Dopirak.

God Bless John McDonough...otherwise we would be resigning Mabry or Hollandsworth again with the spin that this time "he is healthy".

No doubt..... it was hard to not be cynical during McDonough's press conference, but you got to give him credit. For once, Cubs upper management stood by a promise that didn't solely involve the increasing of revenues at Wrigley.

AZ PHIL: "I would imagine Hendry will probably offer Floyd a one-year deal for about $3M plus..."

As I stated earlier, PHIL, I concurr that it would be a "nice story" if he returned to Chi-Town and the Cubs were to get into the post-season.

But $3MM for him for a year? Isn't that a bit steep for a guy at the end of his career, coming off injury (multiple) and declining numbers?

LHPH for sure! ONLY! Do not send Murton packing or platoon him. It would be also a mistake to consider for a moment that he'd be a replacement for JJones, coming off a terrific offensive year.

I'm hoping the Cubs braintrust realize this.

If we do in deed sign Lilly, though, signing Jennings simply means that the Cubs are sealing their own fate of mediocrity in the starting rotation.

What's with the twisted perception about starting pitchers? Are Cubs fans under the impression that we've been watching a staff full of aces for years on end just because we're always doing the Prior/Wood DL-watch?
Lilly isn't that bad and he's certainly a much better option than Zach Duke. The only real problem with Ted is that he burns his pitch count by the 5th-6th inning pretty often.
This is similar to Rob calling Westbrook "back of the rotation filler". (sorry Rob)

The reality is that Westbrook and Lilly are both pretty good pitchers.

Among AL starters,
Westbrook was 16th in ERA with 4.17
Lilly was 19th at 4.31

Generally, you can shave about .2 from ERA with a transition to the NL.
If Westbrook threw a 4.00 ERA in the NL last year, that would've been good for 16th best in the NL.
If Lilly pitched in the NL and posted a 4.11 ERA, he would've also been 19th among NL starters.

Those are 2 pitchers who would make this team better immediately. Schmidt or Padilla would be nice, but any 2 starters in this range is better than hoping Marshall and Marmol can post anything near league average ERA.

#43 of 43: By the E-Man (December 2, 2006 04:21 PM)
AZ PHIL: "I would imagine Hendry will probably offer Floyd a one-year deal for about $3M plus..."

As I stated earlier, PHIL, I concurr that it would be a "nice story" if he returned to Chi-Town and the Cubs were to get into the post-season.

But $3MM for him for a year? Isn't that a bit steep for a guy at the end of his career, coming off injury (multiple) and declining numbers?

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

E-MAN: I hear ya. It's too much, but that doesn't mean the Cubs won't give it to him. And I doubt that Floyd would sign for less than that, especially since some A. L. club would probably pay him that much (maybe even more) to be just a platoon DH.

Remember, Hendry likes Cliff Floyd a lot (the Cubs almost traded Sammy Sosa for him a couple of years ago), and I think the Cubs do not want to get caught with their fly open if something happens to D-Lee. The only other possible (cheaper) FA back-up 1B-OF-LHPH types out there I can see are Todd Hollandsworth, Ricky Ledee, John Mabry, and Matt Stairs, and I'm not sure I would want any of those guys over Floyd, even if it costs $2M more for Floyd (that is, unless that extra $2M keeps the Cubs from signing Jason Schmidt!), although I have always been partial to Matt Stairs.

If Cliff Floyd does sign with the Cubs, I believe it would have to be with the understanding that he will NOT be an everyday player, unless something happens to D-Lee or to Murton. Either Floyd accepts that, or he doesn't. And if he doesn't, then expect the Cubs to sign Stairs, Holly, Mabry, or Ledee, because they essentially are the only other options for that roster slot.

One other in-house possibility I did not mention is Jason Smith, who was signed by the Cubs last month as an MLFA with an NRI to ST. Smith (a one-time BA Cubs Top 10 prospect who was traded to TB for Fred McGriff five years ago) has evolved into a super-sub utility guy who can play any position in the IF & OF (including 1B). He also did a nice job as a LHPH for COL this past season, and he has HR power, too.

http://preview.tinyurl.com/y5tsts

I guess asking for someone to post the whole story would be copyright infringement...

Frequent reader, next to never poster. I recall when the Cubs traded for Neil Cotts that there was talk he would be in consideration for the rotation. Is that no longer the case?

DMCubsFan:

Welcome to the site. And we haven't heard anything further on Cotts wanting/going to start, and we don't even know if he's working on extending his arm and endurance.

I guess it's dependant on the number of pitchers the Cubs acquire during the winter meetings.

There were grumblings last year from the Sox that Cotts was hiding an injury. He was really great in 2005, but I don't think it's realistic to plan on him being a starter. I don't know what Hendry's point was behind saying that stuff. Maybe he hoped it would make him look less desperate for SP?

Big John Stud: Ted Lilly is not a #2 starter. I'm not saying that in comparison to Prior or Wood; he's not an ace, and he's also not a #2. It's debatable whether he's a #3 or not, so I'd just as soon pencil him in as a #4. Likewise, I don't think that Jennings is a #2 starter. I think he's a #4. Having a rotation of one true ace (Zambrano) a kid who may have put it all together at the end of the year (or may not have, but I think he did put it together) and, if he did, is a #3 (Hill), a guy who used to be an ace but is still recovering from injury and only lasts 5 innings (Miller) and two #4 starters (Lilly and Jennings, for arguments-sake) is mediocre. Now, IF Prior comes back and pitches like he's capable, and/or IF Miller gains more velocity and strength and re-establishes a consistent release point, then having Lilly and Jennings, in addition to Hill and Zambrano, would give the Cubs arguably the best staff in the NL, and one of the best staffs in baseball. But those are a lot of ifs, and as much as I like Prior, I don't want this season to rest on a question mark (no pun intended).

If, on the other hand, the Cubs were to trade for Westbrook (which now seems unlikely), they'd have a #2 starter to go behind Zambrano and in front of Hill, Lilly, and Miller/Prior. That would give the Cubs a very strong rotation. I guess I'm just a much bigger fan of Westbrook than I am of Jennings, especially since Westbrook's sinker + Wrigley's infield grass==a lot of ground ball outs and a lot of deep outings for him.

I never called Westbrook back-of-the-rotation material; I think he's a #2 starter on most teams.

STUD: "Those are 2 pitchers who would make this team better immediately. Schmidt or Padilla would be nice, but any 2 starters in this range is better than hoping Marshall and Marmol can post anything near league average ERA."

o.k., o.k., you do have a point - but with Lilly, his injury history and the fact that a 4-yr. deal is on the table really has me concerned.

We all have become knowledgeable on DL watching, towel-throw drills, soft-toss, etc. Surely, this is a guy who will carry the torch forward in these areas if the Cubs sign him.

With Marshall, I believe that he has tremendous upside and it will be interesting to see which team will be the one to fulfill it.

I don't see the point in labeling guys #2, #3...
What's the point? Lilly is basically as good as Westbrook, he just doesn't throw as many innings. Jennings was better than both of them last year.
Big Z was barely better than Jennings.

In the second half, Rich Hill was better than all of them.????

Guys are numbered in the rotation from year to year based on how well they did the year before. Just get the best pitchers available and line them up in the rotation however it looks best.

There are 14 teams in the AL. Lilly was 19th in ERA. He was actually a #2-#3 starter on virtually any team. It makes no sense to cling to a pre-conceived notion about a guy being a certain # starter. How many starters did the Yankees have who were better than Lilly? The Cardinals?

A rotation of:

Z
Hill (resembling anything close to his 2nd half)
Jennings
Lilly
Miller (30 starts at or even a bit below league average)

would be one of the best in the NL.

I agree with BJS. Wow, is it the first time? :)

If the Trib has it right, Lilly was 3rd in the AL in most BB per 9 innings.

Trailing league leader...wait for it...Gil Meche.

Perfect.

The Cubs do seem to love pitchers that walk a lot of batters and batters that don't take a lot of walks from pitchers. Recipe for something less than success.

Sounds like you're suggesting that somebody should WHIP the Cubs across their HIP. I'm usually not into that scene, but I could give it a go. They could certainly use it, and it'd be pretty hard to miss Jim Hendry's HIP.

Is there any way the Cubs can pry Dontrelle Willis away from the Marlins? I know they need a CF. Would Felix Pie, Sean Marshall, and one of the other pitching prospects (or perhaps Dempster) get the job done?

Willis is arbitration eligible in 2007 and the Marlins don't appear to be interested in increasing their payroll to accommodate what Willis would likely get in arbitration. He would be a great #2 for the Cubs and would allow Lilly (or what ever FA they sign) to slot in as a #3 or #4, either in front of or behind Hill.

How about Jacque Jones for Kris Benson? Baltimore needs a leftfielder.

I'm not trying to be a bastard about the idea of labeling pitchers with a number. The point is, Soriano was just given a mega-contract, A-Ram was locked up through his prime and D-Lee is locked up for the next 4 years. Plus this may be the last year of having a bat like Barrett's from the catcher position. None of that will mean anything if the Cubs don't build some semblance of a quality rotation. With the big bats locked up, it doesn't make sense to pass on proven rotation arms because of price/value/production in relation to the youngsters. You can't wait on Guzman, Marshall and Marmol to develop or bet on getting lucky with a reclamation project like Miller. If that's the plan, there's no point in having Soriano, D-Lee and A-Ram. The committment has been made to win now.
I'm with Ryan... just not a big fan of Lilly, but two starters are needed. I'd prefer Schmidt, Padilla, Westbrook and Jennings ahead of Lilly. If Prior gets healthy and Guzman or Mateo force their way into the rotation, then great, dump Lilly's contract onto someone who wants a lefty. In the meantime, a couple of above league average starters like Lilly and Westbrook are necessary.

BJS-Z was barely better than Jennings?

Zambrano:
16-7, 33starts, 214 IP, 162 H, 210K/115 BB, 3.41 ERA, 1.29 WHIP

Jennings:
9-13, 32starts, 212 IP, 206 H, 142K/85BB, 3.78 ERA, 1.37 WHIP.

Zambrano has a better record, ERA, more K's (troubling BB increase), and a better WHIP.
He is also 2 1/2 years younger than Jennings.

That being said, if they'd take Jacque Jones for Jennings, I'd do it in a second.
The rest of your post I agree with. Past the obvious #1 guys...2,3 and 4 are just labels.

Because of Z's obscene BB rate, he really didn't fare that much better than Jennings. Z was more than "barely better", but he wasn't that much better. Their WHIP and ERA are reasonably close. Sure, Z's immensely more talented, but if he can't control his stuff and continues to put guys on base at that rate, the end result isn't much better than what Jennings can do.

Well Chad those a career numbers, I was looking at last 3 years. Floyd is a shell of a player now especially against LHP.

.218 BA, .285 OBP, .664 OPS

He just can't hit lefties anymore. That is Jacque Jones levels.

He has some decent numbers against righties. But that .244 average last year is just a harbinger of things to come with him.

Murton in his brief career is hitting .329 with a .401 OBP against lefties and .289 with a .359 OBP against rightes. Plus Murton isn't on his last legs as a baseball player like Floyd is. It would be criminally stupid for the Cubs to bench/trade Murton and fool themselves into thinking Floyd would be an answer.

Sure I wouldn't mind him for the bench, but we don't know if Floyd wants to be on the bench. I think he still looks at himself as starter material.

For people advocating a straight up Jones/Jennings trade, what are your thoughts on Center Field if that deal would actually come to fruition?

Pray Pie wins the job in the spring?

Sign a Kenny Lofton type until Pie proves he is ready (hopefully at mid-season)?

I would make the trade also, as an Outfielder is generally easier to come by than a decent Starting Pitcher..... but I am not sure exactly what options would be out there to fill Center.

I go back to my comment (#12).....2007/2008 is put up or shut up for Hendry/McDonough. All their moves so far indicate a team 'going for it'. If this is truly what's happening, we'll see Hendry make his move this month for 2, if not 3, starting pitchers. Even if it puts the payroll at $125M+. I think AZ Phil has done a great job of classifying the pitchers out there (#2, #3, etc.), but let's stop focusing on our favorite guys and what the Cubs need. They need at least 2 guys to go with 'Z' who can put up 190-210 innings with ERA's around 4.0 to 4.3....Hill could be real nice (maybe 165-170 IP and a dozen wins if lucky). You need 4 SP's who give you a chance to win and then look at the #5 starters in all baseball (compare Miller, Marshall, et al to any of them and difference isn't that big). I don't know what duo that would be -- Schmidt, Padilla, Westbrook, Lilly, Meche, etc. but Jimbo better figure it out this month or it's going to be another long season with a huge payroll.

Also, why all the love for Murton? He can hit (maybe) if he continues to make adjustments to how he's pitched, but he's brutal in the OF..absolutely brutal. If you don't think that's going to catch Lou's eye, you never played much baseball. Bottom line: Murton, Jones, Pie, whoever would be available for the best SP's I could trade for......AZ Phil should know this as well: these are the only 'prospects' any AL/NL team values from the Cubs -- Veal, Pawelek, Pie, and E. Patterson (he's a maybe). If I'm Hendry, I trade any or all of them for a shot at the World Series this year and next.

Look at the career numbers then BJS...Z struggled with his control last year, and still had a better year. He is a better pitcher.

Again, I'd take Jennings in a trade for Jones.

The love for Murton is because he is a young outfielder who showed that he can hit both LHP and RHP, has some pop, and can get on base. He also had a terrific second half after struggling in June.
I'll give a guy some time to improve defensively if he can hit. He is not the SS or CF, where defensive struggles are magnified. He'll be fine in LF. Murton is a player on the rise, not wringing a last good year out of the twilight of his career, which is a nice change of pace.

I didn't say Zambrano wasn't better.
I don't have to look at career numbers. I've watched virtually every big league game Zambrano has pitched. I'm not going to be such a homer, though, to try and make it sound any different than it is. Zambrano was not a whole lot better than Jennings in 2006.

1) Zambrano is far more talented
2) Zambrano has had a far better career
3) Zambrano wasn't much better than Jennings last year
4) Zambrano has struggled with his control for most of his career. Those rising BB totals are ugly.
4) Their 2006 W-L records mean nothing. Zambrano had big run support last year.

You took my original comment out of context. I was using it as an example that from year to year, the pecking order among your pitching staff can change. 4th best pitcher one year cuold be your 1st or 2nd best the next year. Z/Jennings was a good example. Z has been much better in the past. In 2006 Jennings was nearly as good as Z. It was only a half a season, but Hill was definitely better than Z after the all-star break.

Even so, if I had to win a one game playoff, I don't have to think twice about it. Zambrano's my guy.

Ted Lilly has only won more than 12 games; he's 59-58 lifetime. ERA under 4 once. Can someone tell me why I should be excited about this? I don't think he's ever pitched in Wrigley, is there a park like Wrigley where he's been successful?

Says Jones is trade for a starter....

I was against bringing up Pie last year, he would be expected to be an immediate contributor on offense which would put to much expectations on him to perform.

Soriano is on the team now, the top of the order is looking good, why not let Pie be the CFer heading into 2007? Just let him play defense and work on his hitting in the #7 or #8 hole. I wouldn't have a problem with that, I would like it more than Julio Lugo playing CF for 8+ million or whatever the Cubs are thinking.

So yeah I am open to the idea of just running with Pie in CF for next season if it comes down to it.

Regarding who the Cubs might have to give up to get a starting pitcher, you have to remember this...

When MLB GMs get together at the Winter Meetings, there's a lot of imbibing of libations into the wee, wee hours. You get a couple of these guys together in the hotel bar til 3 AM, and believe it or not, some otherwise rational baseball man might even trade Mark Grudzielanek and Eric Karros for Todd Hundley.

So you just never know what might happen. Logic can fly out the window with the 15th scotch & soda. Hopefully our man Jimbo can keep his wits about him.

You get a couple of these guys together in the hotel bar til 3 AM, and believe it or not, some otherwise rational baseball man might even trade Mark Grudzielanek and Eric Karros for Todd Hundley.

Haha, great tie-in there Phil!!

"3) Zambrano wasn't much better than Jennings last year"

Was Jennings a Cy Young candidate last year?

Zambrano: 3.41 ERA, 1.29 WHIP

Jennings: 3.78 ERA, 1.37 WHIP

Do you understand numbers?

Zambrano wasn't much better than Jennings last year.

Numbers schmubers. I don't know why you are making this argument.

Webb 3.10 ERA, 1.13 WHIP

Webb (the 2006 Cy Young winner, BTW) wasn't much better than Zambrano last year.

Darin Erstad does not seem to be in the Angels plans. Wouldn't he be a better option for the Cub's bench than Floyd? He can play CF, LF or First. He certainly seems to be a Pinella type of player.

I don't really know what the plans are if we do sign Floyd, but I'm guessing there looking for power off the bench, then a glove and versatility that Erstad would give us.

Jones for Benson was all over an O's message board the other day, just people talking, but funny it came up again here.

The Pawelek interview is rather boring....

- came out of shape last year, no one to blame for himself
- has a set workout program this year
- bunch of crap on working on his pitches..

if I'm repeating, sorry.

Roberts to Giants for 3/18 is official
Jose Guillen to Mariners for 1/5
Reds are going to file a grievance that Nats misled them on Majeweski's health in the trade.

http://preview.tinyurl.com/yjctn4

http://preview.tinyurl.com/ycaflt

I thought these were 2 pretty good articles by Sullivan on the history of winter meetings and overspending for free agents.

Barry Bonds. One year, $10-$12MM. Trade Murton, Jock, Izzy, Dempster and/or young pitching prospects for starting pitchers. Sign Lugo (for SS). Promote Pie (and bat him 8th).

Discuss.

Trade Murton, Jock, Izzy, Dempster and/or young pitching prospects for starting pitchers.

Other than Murton, there's not much to like among those guys. You're not going to get anybody special starters.

think more than a few teams would take j.jones for 5.5m a year with his production...even if for 'just" CF or LF.

if someone gives hendry a starting CF/RF he wants and they can pay jones instead of the cubs.

"So you just never know what might happen. Logic can fly out the window with the 15th scotch & soda. Hopefully our man Jimbo can keep his wits about him."

Well atleast Jimbo's diet helps him with his job.

As for the Lily deal he was the 5th best 2nd tier FA (6th if you include Igawa in the group) we could have signed. Honestly I dont know why he did not go after Suppan. The guy eats innings and infield grass with his GB numbers. Everyone in that group (Supp, Lily, Maddux, Padilla, Weaver, Meche) is going to get a 4/36-40 deal expect Maddux will be probably get 2/14 with a option for a third with a 2-3 mil buyout.

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2...

Sosa interview will be on Outside the Lines and Sportscenter at various points tomorrow. You can watch a brief clip as well...

As for the Lily deal he was the 5th best 2nd tier FA (6th if you include Igawa in the group) we could have signed. Honestly I dont know why he did not go after Suppan.

Suppan? I hope you're joking. I have NO interest in him. He'll tank like Morris if he leaves Duncan. And, hey, relax, we haven't signed Lilly to anything yet. You make it sound like a done deal.

Btw, I noticed on a chicagosports.com poll that when asked "Which Cub will hit the most HR's next year?", 50% said Derrek Lee, 24% said Ramirez, and 26% said Soriano. Interesting.

Was Zambrano a choice in the HR poll? Unless we figure out the pitching he may play 125 games next year.

http://story.scout.com/a.z?s=325&p=2&c=596799

Blue Jays site...

ìI think itís real accurate to say that geography is not going to eliminate anybody,î Schmidtís agent Scott Sanderson said.

According to multiple executives, Schmidt currently has an offer on the table from a west coast team ñ believed to be Seattle ñ worth approximately $44 million over four years.

Sources tell InsideTheDome that the Cubs want to sign Schmidt, but believe their location on the map, and Seattleís strong interest, puts them in a difficult position.

ìYou can take it to the bank that if the Cubs sign Jason, they will eliminate themselves from the race for Lilly.î

One baseball official said Saturday afternoon that he believes the Cubs are in the distance to sign Schmidt because they have made a strong offer to Ted Lilly.

I just read on MLB.com that the Dodgers are interested in re-signing Greg Maddux for around $10.5 million per year, but that Maddux is looking for 2 years at $12.5 million per year. I know the market has gone a little nuts, but doesn't $12.5 million per year for Maddux seem kind of high? We were talking about this a few days ago and I think the consensus was that Maddux was probably looking at $8-$9 million per year.

http://www.dailyherald.com/sports/cubs.asp?id...

Primer by Miles on the GM meetings...

something about the cubs and lilly talking parameters, not necessarily an offer.

Not so interested in Trot Nixon yet, could change if medical reports on Floyd aren't so great

Like Westbrook, hasn't been very available yet

Ted Lilly is a No. 3 in an average starting rotation; a No. 4 in a good one; a No. 2 in a bad one. If he's the No. 2, it will be another long season; even if he's the No. 3, it means the Cubs have to cross their fingers and hope other things go right (such as Prior being healthy).

And while I was certainly happy with Rich Hill over the final 2 months of 2006, how does he possibly get compared to Zito, I don't even think he can be compared to Lilly yet. What happens if Hill shows up at spring training and is terrible again like 2006?

The bad thing about signing Lilly is that not only rules out Schmidt in all likelihood, but probably also Padilla. It's not going to be easy to get either Westbrook or Jennings, so we're probably looking at either Batista or Marquis.

Pretty much you can rank SP by the number of innings they pitch.

Aces pitch 220+
#2 guys 200
#3 guys 190
#4 Guys 170
#5 guys 150

If your starters do better than that, you're in good shape.

Lilly's upside is a #3 starter, I would rather take a chance on Padilla and his craziness for an extra $1 million per year, since he has in stretches been a ligitimate ace. I would take Suppan or Maddux and would think hard about Weaver over Lilly. Lilly is going to get shelled pitching at Wrigley June-September.

The Yahoo! Sports front page says it all:

Headline: "Winter wonderland: Mediocre pitchers set to get rich"
Then... a picture of Gil Meche

lol... Geesh.

Trib bigfoot (and small brain) Phil Rodgers in his usual sunday column says a mlb source saturday was hearing the Cubs "working to sign" to Kenny Lofton. I'm still a Lofton fan and think he'd be a good short term addition (lefty bat and good obp history) especially if they move Jacques Jones. One thing you can say about Lofton, he does seem to wind up in the playoffs alot.

The article also mentions Kerry Wood being Jason Schmidt's neighbor, which has been discussed on TCR previously.

http://tinyurl.com/y5sw9d

lilly as a #2 wouldnt be a bad option for the cubs with their depth of pen as long as the #3 guy can be counted on to turn in 7+ innings pretty steady.

the order really only matter in relation to the rest the pen needs, imo.

cubs had Z as a scheduled #2/3 even though he's been the #1 guy for years.

by "pretty steady" i mean more than lilly is...and more than almost the entire cubs rotation last year =p

"When MLB GMs get together at the Winter Meetings, there's a lot of imbibing of libations into the wee, wee hours"

AZ Phil has hit on something. Can't you see? The more pounds Hendry puts on, the more alcohol his body can absorb. You think a little runt like Theo Epstein could hold his own drink for drink with Gelatinous Jim? The bigger Hendry gets, the better late night trades he can make at the Winter Meetings. By risking his health to gain body mass, Jim is truly taking one for the team.

manny ramirez for glendon rusch, late breakfast at Denny's, and cab fare seems to be inevitable.

go jim.

"When MLB GMs get together at the Winter Meetings, there's a lot of imbibing of libations into the wee, wee hours"

The Hendry surname is from an old Scottish clan...they come with a genetically enhanced ability to order and drink Single Malt Scotch till the other GM takes Todd Hundley, Bobby Hill and Hee Seop Choi off your hands

I really want the Cubs to pursue Lofton; even if they keep Jones, Lofton would provide a spark, a good clubhouse presence, and would be able to PH or PR, as well as make a couple starts a week to spell Murton or Jones, should the need arise.

So naturally, I was furious to see that Phil Rogers' "sources" say the Cubs are trying to re-acquire him. Phil Rogers is almost never correct on anything. If he thinks we are going to get someone, odds are that we won't. Just the same though, Lofton would be a great proactive addition for Hendry to make. Teams looking for a LH outfielder would have one less option, therefore (hopefully) increasing Jones' value on the market. Lofton lacks power, but that's really not something the Cubs need, with D-Lee, A-Ram, Alf, and Barrett. And as I've stated in previous posts, if Pie should be ready, Lofton could always move to the bench (same applies if we don't trade Jones, but I really don't want to see JJ in CF next year) and be a positive contributor.

of course Lofton is cursed. will get you to the playoffs, but makes sure you don't win the WS.

after all these contracts for 13-15-17m the cubs have handed out...and guys like roberts getting 6m at age 72 to be a CF...i still cannot find a reason to hate the idea of a 5.5m jones with his power patrolling CF, especially when he's locked in for 2 years at that price.

people may hate his work vs. lefties, but that's about 120-150ab's a year vs. his work killing righties (and his power being uneffected by the lefties even if his BA/OB% is).

crunch: His arm and lack of playing time at CF in the past couple of years are reason enough to not want him in CF. Jones is really a LF, but we have Murton there, and I'd rather have Murton than Jones on my team. His salary is fine, and I can live with his SOs and inability to hit lefties, if he were a platoon player, but he's probably not going to be a platoon player. He's probably not going to be on the team if Hendry can get a good SP and Jones is needed as part of the package. But if given the option of having Lofton in CF or Jones in CF, who would you prefer?

I'm with Crunch. Jones makes much more sense in CF at a very reasonable price. And I'm not concerned about Jones moving over to CF. He's played their before and he has the speed to handle the position. Plus, we've talked in the past about Soriano being able to handle the move to CF or RF. If Soriano can do it, Jones can certainly do it.

Having said that, I'm not opposed to trading Jones for a SP. There are a lot of choices when it comes to decent outfielders, but pitching is really at a premium right now.

CUBSTER: "The Hendry surname is from an old Scottish clan...they come with a genetically enhanced ability to order and drink Single Malt Scotch till the other GM takes Todd Hundley, Bobby Hill and Hee Seop Choi off your hands..."

REALLY funny shit! LOL! Thanks...

*Barry Bonds. One year, $10-$12MM. Trade Murton, Jock, Izzy, Dempster and/or young pitching prospects for starting pitchers. Sign Lugo (for SS). Promote Pie (and bat him 8th).

Discuss.*

Nah, I'll save my breath for the discussion that would come when Bonds is indicted for something or other and the Cubs go into a tailspin because of it.

Or the discussion that would come after Bonds needs something scoped and missed 80 games.

Pass.

http://preview.tinyurl.com/ut3wq

the aforementioned Lofton curse if you haven't seen it yet...

Obviously not a Chadballer.

http://preview.tinyurl.com/ymju4c

more stories from Winter Meetings past, great story about a Dunston for Tom Foley swap in there, (heavy drinking involved).

misc. crap...

was reading the mlb phillies mailbag and u.urbina is still in jail...for those that might be wondering.

Does anyone else wonder if the Cubs use the Fan Surveys at chicagosports.com to make decisions? And the follow-up question, would it be a bad thing if they did?

no and yes.

=p

there's a lot of voting with heart rather than the mind (or maybe its ignorance) on too many issues.

and most of the questions are just retarded as hell...for instance:

"Do you want Jason Schmidt in the Cubs rotation?"

ummm. gee.

the question, to be taken seriously for anything but a popularity contest needs more "reality" added to it such as payroll, considerations already on the payroll, other available talent, your mom, etc.

Damn, how long has Urbina been in jail? Over a year?

I guess attempted murder is a serious offense, who wudda thunk it?

I heard that Ugueth Urbina bought Juan Uribe for two cartons.

If Jones does go for a pitcher. What about a Trot Nixon/Craig Wilson platoon in right? I am still holding out hope for Soriano in center.

your ideas are far too revolutionary for the Cubs, Real Neal....

Thanks for the winter meetings/Lofton curse links, Rob.

any guesses as to how much Trot Nixon signs for both in $$ and years?

also I think it would be funny but my guess is JD Drew plays in fewer games this yr than Nixon does.

Craig Wilson would be a strong addition to any bench, particularly if LouPa's gonna rest some of the regulars. We at TCR beat this drum alot last year to no avail, right Rob?

You want some weird/depressing news?

Apparently the Cubs are hot after Kenny Lofton for CF.

But I think they were just too ashamed to actually admit it because the Tribune web page that was running that story no longer exists.

I hope it stays that way. Seeing the corpse of Kenny Lofton in CF would make Murton look like a gold glover out there.

Mike, I don't know why you say that. Lofton is no butcher out there. He's not a gold glover but he's still fast and plays alright.

I think Lou P has a history of using some platoons, and also of employing a 'super-sub'. If you're going to have a strong bench, which he has stated he needs, platooning is probably the best way to do it.

I don't think Nixon will play more than Drew next year, just because he is such an obvious platoon player (plus he has injury issues). He and Wilson could both be signed on one year 'make good' deals, if no one throws big bucks at them, and from the lack of their names coming up I assume that's going to be the case. I woldn't be shocked if they could both be had for $6 million total. It only takes two or three eams though to build up their asking price. Nixon would probably fit in the Pirates yearly right field opening.

Lofton's parabolic tosses to the pitcher's mound leave about the same amount of fear in baserunner's mind as Pierre's three-hoppers to a hard charging shorstop. He wasn't so bad at catching baseballs last time I watched him a lot. That was 4 years ago, though.

Lofton was terrible playing CF for the Dodgers last year. Whatever he had he clearly lost on defense last year.

He has an OK stick but it looks alot like Juan Pierre, only slower and older. He does have the OBP to make him look a little better but not much better.

Plus hoping Lofton stays in one piece health wise at age 39 is the same risk you take in hoping Cliff Floyd can make it through a full season of games. The odds are not very good.

NEAL: " guess attempted murder is a serious offense, who wudda thunk it?"

You may not have heard, but he also was in for Attempt to Distribute COHIBAs.

A serious offense, in addition to the attempted murder.

nixon's not gonna wanna be a platoon player given his relative age and weakness in the RF market.

at least i'd be really suprised if he agreed to be one. he's not got too many more years to cash in on a nice fat contract and being a 300-400ab guy wont get it done if he's healthy enough to start.

Were they in the jerry cans of gasoline? Maybe it was just a Christmas bonus he was trying to give out?

"he's not got too many more years to cash in on a nice fat contract and being a 300-400ab guy "

You see a lot of teams clamoring for a right fielder who slugged .394 (.312 vs lefties) last year? He's been a platoon player for the last three years, I think he knows he can't hit lefties.

"Lofton was terrible playing CF for the Dodgers last year. Whatever he had he clearly lost on defense last year."

That's true. I watched 40-50 Dodgers games last season (mostly because of Vin) and Lofton's defense was all but good... and yeah, he's 39. H

"You see a lot of teams clamoring for a right fielder who slugged .394 (.312 vs lefties) last year? He's been a platoon player for the last three years, I think he knows he can't hit lefties."

well then, it comes down to wanting to pay him 6-8m per year for 3-4 years at that point.

i dont really see him checking out now as a "i realize im just a platoon guy" type, especially given his own outspoken ego...which he wisely keeps out of the newspapers by not feeding them stuff to crucify him with.

it would seem like giving up for him to take anything but a chance to start full time unless someone gives him enough loot to shut up about it.

ROB G.: did you catch Lofton much out there? Anything left in the tank in your opinion?

I usually watch the Angels over the Dodgers actually, but I do read Dodger Thoughts every once in awhile and they can't stand Lofton.

Of course, they hated the Pierre signing even more.

Lofton is still hitting and it really depends on why we're signing him. As an everyday CF option, it's absolutely ridiculous to sign him and trade jacque imo. As a bench guy who will get plenty of Ab's, that I'm all for...

"i dont really see him checking out now as a "i realize im just a platoon guy" type, especially given his own outspoken ego...which he wisely keeps out of the newspapers by not feeding them stuff to crucify him with.

it would seem like giving up for him to take anything but a chance to start full time unless someone gives him enough loot to shut up about it."

Nixon has only gotten 500 AB's twice in 8 years. The last three years his numbers against lefties are .209/.325/.295 for an OPS of .620.

Overall, his power seems to have disappeared due to injuries and he's no spring chicken. He only has 27 homers in 1066 plate appearances over the last 3 years.

Lofton + Pie = hedging your bets

i.e., hopefully one of them is ready to go in the first half, and/or hopefully one of them is still going in the second half.

As long as it's ONLY ONE YEAR, and not an amount of money that fully commits you to him (as in, not more than $5 million), I think it's at best a good move, or at worst a very safe, Hendry-esque move.

Pie looks close but you can't just give him the job. See Anderson, Brian.

Totally, totally off of any topic, but:

Does anyone here have any thoughts about places in or near Fullerton, CA that are nice to live, and about how much it costs per month to live in a decent one-bedroom apt.? Rob? Chad? Other CA residents?

Trans,

Too early to wish you congrats on landing a teaching job at CSF?

about how much it costs per month to live in a decent one-bedroom apt.?

About $975/mo for a nice fairly spacious contemporary 1 BR in Fullerton Trans, but a lot of places will give you a lower rate the first month.

A little bit premature. I just had a finalist interview on-campus last week. It went well, but there's now way to know in advance what they're thinking between the three candidates.

But IF they offer me the job, I want to have a better sense of whether I can afford to take it... So. Cal has to beat rural AR, and it'd be tenure-track, but I have to be able to afford to live somewhere OK.....

any opinions about good places to live in the area? Is fullerton an interesting place to live? Better communities to live that are nearby?

Well, good luck anyway. Whereabouts in rural AR are you currently? Not trying to be nosy, but I was born in Little Rock.

Sorry, I know nothing about southern California.

Yo Andew---
I'm livin' in Little Rock right now. Maumelle, actually, but let's not argue semantics.
The area's not for everyone, but I've lived in much worse places.

The rural part. ~grin~ Basically, one of the public universities here. Nice people, but very boring. Little Rock, at least, seems interesting.

Signing Lofton, IMO, is contingent upon whether or not the Cubs really do believe that a) Pie is the answer and b) he will be ready by '08 at the latest. If the answer to both of those is yes, then Lofton would be a very nice addition. His defense isn't as great as it used to be, and he has little pop in his bat. Other than that, he has a good OBP, doesn't strike out often, has a great attitude, is a winner, and is professional enough to accept a demotion to the bench if it should be in the team's best interest for him to do so.

If Pie is not the answer, then signing Lofton would make little sense. If Pie's not the answer, it'd be better to admit that he's not the superstar in the making that the Cubs' brass thought he was and trade him to Florida, who would most likely deal Olsen or Johnson for him straight-up (as they were supposedly willing to deal either one of them for Taveras, whose ceiling is far lower than Pie's). Perhaps the deal could be expanded, with us sending Guzman/Ryu and Mateo back in the deal to acquire Willis or Sanchez instead of Johson or Olsen. If this was done, we wouldn't need to dangle Jones for pitching, so we would most likely make him the CF, although I have serious doubts about his ability to play that position. Jones is, IMO, a left fielder.

If Lofton is signed, though, I'd expect for Pie to NOT be traded. I'd also only expect a 1/$4.5-ish type deal for Lofton, tops.

Cal State Fullerton? You're not going to be teaching their most popular course, Pizza Delivery 101, are you?

Yeah, Little Rock's nice and fairly sane and non-redneck within the city. Just don't venture too far outside. Hope you get out of the sticks soon, Trans.

JD-Too, Maumelle and Little Rock are both great, but that wasteland in between sure ain't.

Social D's Mike Ness once referred to his apt in Fullerton as a "shooting gallery" so you may want to ask the locals where Mike Ness used to live and probably avoid that area.

I'm in one of the islands surrounded by wasteland. It's an island that shuts down at 7pm every night. Nice place to begin a career, nice people, not interested in staying for more than a couple years.

Pizza Delivery: Is that a California Porn joke, a Dumb Student joke, both, or something else entirely? (dense)

I think he's calling it a party school.

HAH! yeah, the goal is to not take a job that requires me to live near or in a shooting gallery.... I will be sure to ask about Mike Ness, if I get that far.... It IS exciting to think about living in an area with MLB teams, for the first time in my life.....

Meh. I come from Madison. We were voted # 1 Party School in the Nation last year. Interested in seeing how far we drop this year, now that I've moved away.....

check your email trans....

NO! I refuse to check! What foul devices you have in store for me, I don't want to know! You don't have nothing on me, you can't control me!

Er.

Ah.

Ok, thanks for the input!

Jimbo likes Murton..

http://preview.tinyurl.com/ygtua2

I'm very happy with Murton and have no intention of trading him," Hendry said of the young outfielder, who hit .297 in his first full big-league season with 13 home runs and 62 RBIs. "I think Murton is going to be a quality player.

"I'd like to augment the outfield situation with some left-handed help, but not in any way is that a negative thought process toward Matt," Hendry added. "We're obviously a little too right-handed now. Hopefully, we can add some left-handed help, whether it be in the outfield or off the bench. There's absolutely no negatives to Murton. We all feel his better days are ahead of him, and he's got a chance to be a really, really good player. I don't plan on doing anything but giving him a chance to play a lot."

That's the best news I've heard all day.

sort of, I went to CSF for two years before transferring to UCLA. Fullerton has one of the largest, if not the largest, porn distribution ring in the country. CSF also has a bit of a reputation of being the dumbest of the CAL state universities. The recent antics of the baseball team do not help that either. It's definitely a party school, and the pizza delivery crack was more of a Jim Rome joke. He has a few CSF grads working on his show and they are depicted as porn addicted idiots. Sorry I can't help with the apt costs, I lived in the dorms for my two years and that was 15 years ago anyway. I'm sure the prices have doubled much like everything else in this state has.

Check your e-mail again, Transo. (Gmail)

Hmm. That's not the best news I've heard all day. But good to know. Thanks!

I've actually never been able to stand Jim Rome. I remember a friend of mine raving about him in the mid-90s, and at that time all I knew about him wasa vague memory of the Jim Everitt interview and thinking that this guy was a third-clas reporter and world-class dick... My opinion hasn't changed much.

"There's absolutely no negatives to Murton. We all feel his better days are ahead of him, and he's got a chance to be a really, really good player. I don't plan on doing anything but giving him a chance to play a lot."

But isn't it true that a manager/GM always openly endorses a player right before pulling/trading him?

:)

wow. The 1-in-3 likelihood that I'll soon have a long-term career in southern california is suddenly making me a popular guy! lol.... Thanks, Carlos.

Ok, I'm done writing my students' final exam for my CURRENT job (those poor bastards, they'll never know what hit them..... er, ah, I mean, this is a very fair and reasonable final exam for my dear students), and I'm going to go watch football and ponder how many more social opportunities there are in So. Cal as opposed to rural Arkansas...

Transo?

Left-handed help? What the hell is Jacque Jones? I don't know who else besides Lofton or Pie he could mean, but is either one "help" compared to Jacque? Probably not in April.

I thought Ventura, CA was the porn capital of the world, good to know I've 2 places to go now. :)

That is some beautiful news regarding Murton.

maybe they'll just add one or two lefty bench bats...

The thing to ask yourself regarding Jones is: is he worth keeping around if it means we have to settle for a below average pitching choice? Someone like Meche or Batista.

If the Cubs can trade Jones for Jason Jennings or, somehow, for Westbrook, it's not a clear-cut answer, IMO. I think both Jennings and Westy will be far superior to Meche or Batista, but will the lack of Jones' production lessen the impact of the pitching upgrade? Probably, but how much?

Last year was Jones' best season since '02, so it's at least highly possible that he regresses next year.

As a student taking a final exam tomorrow, it would have been a lot cooler if I hadn't had read #158, haha

"more social opportunities there are in So. Cal as opposed to rural Arkansas"

I believe the night and day analogy works here.

I'll be in L.A. this week for business.

Where do they film all those pornos?

So I can stear clear of them and avert my virgin eyes.

On Sunday, Hendry would not go into specifics about any possible negotiations, and would not comment on a rumored offer to free agent Barry Zito. The team was not believed to have made an offer to the left-hander.

same article as Murton quote, anyone know where the rumored offer for Zito came from?

"same article as Murton quote, anyone know where the rumored offer for Zito came from?"

Scott Boras.

I forgot to post the link to the Boras-Zito blurb.

I saw that Newsday article on Zito a few days ago and, in my opinion, it's purely Newsday making shit up.

newsday is owned by the trib...ITS ALL A CONSPIRACY@!$!@$!@$

meh...way too much NY sportsmedia is full of crap and busy making/funneling rumors than making contacts to get more legit info.

http://preview.tinyurl.com/y2y3e3

some talk about Jennings, Rockies asked for Rich Hill, Cubs were more interested in trading Jones, Cedeno or some other young pitching, probably would need a 3rd team at this point...

some Zito talk as well...

If it comes down to:

6 years of Zito at $15 per
4 Years of Schmidt at $14 per
4 Years of Padilla at $11 per
4 Years of Lilly at $9.5 per

I think I would probably go Schmidt, Padilla, Zito and Lilly. Besides playing at Wrigley and the NL Central, I don't like the idea of Hill and Zito/Lilly facing the same team in consecutive days. Even if the Piniella sets the rotation for that not to happen, eventually because of days off, injuries, ASG or whatever, it probably will a few times a year. If Marshall winds up as the 5th starter, it would happen a lot.

For another team, with a big park like the Mets or Dodgers I could see Zito, Lilly, Padilla, Schmidt.

I guess I should have thrown Suppan and Maddux in there, I would put them after Zito.

Does anyone here have any thoughts about places in or near Fullerton, CA that are nice to live,

There's nothing nice about Southern California. The South takes what the North delivers. Two states! We want two states! North and South! Two states!

I kept reading "Ted Lily" as "Ted Leo." I'd be much more excited if Ted Leo were coming to the Cubs.

You could live in Yorba Linda, home of Richard Nixon (thanks to Tom Tomorrow for that bit of trivia!). Seriously though, if the job is good, you'll find something reasonable around there. Just know that that part of the basin is a serious armpit. Expect lots and lots of smog and plenty of neighborhoods sprinkled around there where you'll die if you get out of your car.

#174:I kept reading "Ted Lily" as "Ted Leo." I'd be much more excited if Ted Leo were coming to the Cubs.

Uncanny -- I've been doing the same thing for this whole thread. You also allude to Pavement and Tom Tomorrow. Are you me? Hey...he thinks I look alike.

So the Cub's aren't trading Murton, and I presume they are not trading Jones, because of this:

I'd like to augment the outfield situation with some left-handed help, but not in any way is that a negative thought process toward Matt," Hendry added. "We're obviously a little too right-handed now.

And... the Cub's are presumably keeping Pie, so that leaves them with what for trade bait?

Marshall? Cedeno? Guzman?

Get real. Looks like it's going to have to be free agent pitchers. I guess there's always the bullpen, but I was getting to like the bullpen.

As someone who lived in LA for over a decade and didn't like the car-dependent hellscape, I still always have to laugh at the NoCal people who act like the snowmelt in the Sierra each spring is something they accomplished and that the south doesn't deserve. Highly entertaining.

"Seriously though, if the job is good, you'll find something reasonable around there. Just know that that part of the basin is a serious armpit."

Reasonable? Are you still living at home? There's nothing reasonable about apartment rents on the west coast. And who knew that Orange County was a "serious armpit?" By that measure, the entire Bay Area is ready for the wrecking ball.

Maybe he'll turn the Cubs' farm around,

Cubs director of scouting TIM WILKEN is the winner of the East Coast Scout of the Year Award. Major league scouts voted on the award.

--Jeff Vorva in today's Daily Southtown

who act like the snowmelt in the Sierra each spring is something they accomplished and that the south doesn't deserve

Not after giving the world The Red Hot Chili Peppers and Poison you don't. You still owe reparations for that.

' guess there's always the bullpen, but I was getting to like the bullpen.'

Well if the rotation produces 1050 innings that only leaves about 58 innings a piece for an 7 bullpen pitchers, so I guess they can trade one of the more solid guys. It depends on who your trade targets are, but there are very few teams who at this point don't consider themselves in contention for a WC or feel like they have pitching to give up.

Server's done puking all over itself, I take it?

WE ARE BACK !!

I blame Rob G.

#134 of 182: By Transmission (December 3, 2006 07:04 PM)
Totally, totally off of any topic, but:

Does anyone here have any thoughts about places in or near Fullerton, CA that are nice to live, and about how much it costs per month to live in a decent one-bedroom apt.? Rob? Chad? Other CA residents?

--

TRANS: Cal State - Fullerton, huh? That's the place Steve "Bottom Ten" Harvey used to called "Cal State - Disneyland" back when CSF was in the old PCAA with other now-defunct Div-1A football programs like Long Beach State and the University of the Pacific.

But one good thing about CSF is that they have an excellent college baseball program. You may even get to party with Kevin Costner (one of the Titans biggest boosters).

And of course Fullerton is real close to Anaheim, so you can probably see a bunch of Angels games.

A poster on BCB (sorry but I had to get my Cubs fix today from somewhere) stated that Keith Law was on ESPN News this afternoon and said the Cubs have set the market for Schmidt and that it would take a west coast team another $14-15 million to compete with the Cubs offer.

Did anyone else see or hear this?

no, but i did hear the cubs offered schmidt 3yr/44m.

I think we should grab Lofton, forget about Floyd, and then trade Jones for Jennings. If we have enough salary cap then, we can also sign Lily (depends on trade).
This would be our bullpen:
Zambrano
Lily
Jennings
Hill
Prior
BTW: OFFICIAL NEWS- Padilla is going to the Rangers.(HEARD ON ESPN RADIO).

Following up on Padilla... MSNBC has the story now:
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/16045534/

3 years/$33 million

They're also reporting that Zito is meeting with the Mets, looking for 7 years/$105 million (!!!)

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/16044902/

So Padilla's off the board and Maddux is about to join him. Both ESPN and Fox Sports are reporting that Maddux is about to sign a contract with San Diego.

According to Ken Rosenthal, the contract is either a one or two year contract, or is a one year contract with a team option for the second year. He didn't indicate the value of the contract, although reports yesterday said that the Dodgers were hoping to sign Maddux for $10.5 million per year, but that Maddux wanted more.

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