Winter Meetings ‘06: Day Three Rumor Roundup

I can't imagine that I'll keep up the pace from yesterday, but I'll do what I can. 7:05 PM Rosenthal says that Lilly has agreed on a 4/40 deal with the Cubs. Welcome to the Northside! 7:00 PM Some of our readers that have been listening to local ESPN radio 1000 and Bruce Levine are saying that Jim Hendry has been admitted to the hospital with flu-like symptoms. Bummer. 6:43 PM - Maybe the Cubs are hedging their bets here, but that same St. Louis Dispatch writer, Bernie Miklasz is saying things don't look good for the Cardinals on the Jeff Suppan front and that the Cubs and Astros have made 3/30 offers for him. Cards are only offering 3/20 at the moment for Suppan. If true, Astros have a distinct advantage as Texas has no state income tax making it a better overall deal for Suppan. It also seems the only thing holding up the Dodger deal with Schmidt is the physical (various sources). 6:33 PM - Newsday is saying the Cubs have upped their offer to 4/44 on Lilly and Cashman is deciding if he'll offer the 4/40 that Lilly said he'd be willing to take to pitch for the Yankees. 6:21 PM My apologies to reader "Andrew", for he did post new info in the comments on a link I had previously posted. It seems 30 minutes after thinking they were out of the Meche running, the Blue Jays now believe he may take their 4/40 offer. 5:13 PM - Is Gil Meche a Cub? A Blue Jays official has told a Seattle paper that it's his understanding that Meche will sign with the Cubs. I'm not a fan...... 4:56 PM - Rotoworld and Will Carroll have both picked up on the Schmidt deal not being done quite yet and Schmidt has apparently stopped talking about it. - SI.com is reporting that Lilly has told the Yankees that he'll sign with them if they offer 4/40. - ESPN is saying that Andy Petitte has decided to pitch next year and if my update at 4:05 pm from Stark is true about the Yanks waiting for Petitte, they'd back out on the Lilly sweepstakes. 4:47 PM - Here's a twist for you, although it looks like a message board, the post is from one of the writers from the St. Louis Dispatch and he says the Schmidt deal isn't done yet and they want to still talk to the Cardinals. Ned Colletti may very well take out all the agents in a mass murder-Godfather style hit if Schmidt backs out. In a later post, (around page 5), Bernie (the writer) says he still believes Schmidt is going to the Dodgers and doesn't trust what his agents are telling the Cardinals. 4:05 PM - Another ESPN update from Stark tells us that the Yanks aren't even sure they'll make an offer on Ted Lilly, preferring Andy Petitte. Unfortunately for them, Petitte probably won't be making any final decisons for a couple of weeks. - He also puts the Blue Jays as the front-runners for Gil Meche. 3:15 PM - Rosenthal jumps in on the Meche/Lilly combination for the Cubs and says the Cubs are pursuing Ryan Church. He also mentions the Mariners as suitors for Miguel Batista. Go to rotoworld.com quick before they fix it, but who is "Sean Hill"? 3:10 PM - Will Carroll indicates that no team was willing to guarantee a fourth year on Schmidt despite his agent pushing for it. CORRECTION: It actually reads, It's worth noting that Ned Colletti once again beat out other teams by going more dollars for fewer years; Schmidt's agent was lobbying hard for a guaranteed fourth year, and it didn't happen. He very well may be talking about just the Dodgers not going four years, not other teams. Apologies if that's the case.... - The same link but a later update says that Piniella was bummed they missed out on Schmidt, but Piniella's next best option is a rotation of Z, Lilly, Hill, Meche and some combination of Prior/Miller. Carroll questions whether the Cubs have really improved this offseason. 2:23 PM - Ted Lilly has crossed the Blue Jays off the list and it's between the Yankees and Cubs for his services. - The same link will tell you that the Mariners have joined the Cliff Floyd sweepstakes along with the Cubs and A's. 12:23 PM I guess that's over, Rosenthal says Schmidt has agreed on a 3 year/$47 million deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Damn you sunny Southern California and your beaches!!! At least it's not the Cardinals. That probably makes Brad Penny available in a trade and if the Dodgers can't get in on Manny Ramirez, think we can entice them into Jacque Jones and a couple of good minor leaguers? Me neither.... 11:51 AM - Will Carroll chimes in saying the Cubs and Cardinals have both bumped their offers to 4 years on Jason Schmidt. 10:47 AM - It seems the main suitors for Kenny Lofton are the Cubs, Rockies and Rangers, but that Lofton is asking for $6 million right now on a one year deal. - This one is a bit old but Gil Meche has narrowed his choices to the Cubs, Royals and Blue Jays and will likely decide by the end of the day. - The Sun-Times runs with the 4/40 deal being offered to Ted Lilly and says the Cubs may be willing to go to 4/44 even. I am very much looking forward to never having a discussion on these boards next season about the Cubs unwillingness to spend money. Although I imagine plenty of discussions on how the Hendry and Co. don't know how to spend the money. Wednesday Morning Roundup - The Cubs have asked for Cliff Floyd's medical records and Bruce Miles speculates that it's just a matter of time before he's a Cub. The article also states the Cubs are interested in Nationals outfielder Ryan Church as well as Daryle Ward who finished the season with the Braves. - In a separate article from Miles, it appears he talked to Lou Piniella and he confirms that Alfonso Soriano will be a corner outfielder (making the deal far worse). Piniella has been busy trying to woo Gil Meche and Ted Lilly. - Speaking of Meche and Lilly, Jayson Stark says the Yanks are Lilly's team of choice and they may end up being accomodating. He also says the Cubs are interested in adding both Meche and Lilly rather than just one or the other. - The odds of Jacque Jones remaining a Cub for 2007 are about 1 in 1,000,000. It's never good when the public mouthpiece rips into you. - The Cubs outbid the Angels by $21 million for Soriano (ugh)! Article also says Cubs may sign Richard Hidalgo to a minor league deal. - Cardinals have stepped up their efforts to sign Jason Schmidt, with word of a three year deal on the table.
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Comments

FANTASTIC JOB by ROB G.!

Thanks for the updates, man!

I hope you can keep it going...

PITCHER Worst-Case Scenario

Well - as I see it, there are three FA pitchers available.

Two, Lilly and Meche are pretty close to the same pitcher with Lilly the edge in SO, BB, fly balls, but older.

The third is the coveted one Schmidt, but on the downside of his career, with decreased velocity and a history of injuries.

Zito ain't happening.

So, if the Cubs do not get anybody - where does it leave the team now??

If only Lilly/Meche is signed - who gets the other slots?

What is the future then of Marshall, Marmol, Guzman, and Ryu?

I enjoyed watching Marshall and Marmol, but - as we all know - the inconsistent nature of a young pitcher will drive us all crazy once again. It could be "wait 'til 2008".

Discuss...

I'm pretty sure the Cubs will get either Lilly or Meche. Cubs.com reported that Meche appears to have the Cubs as his #1 choice, while it appears the Cubs would prefer Lilly, at least at this point.

If they don't sign either, expect them to go hard after Schmidt, ala Soriano. Hopefully they'll do that regardless.

According to the STLtoday article, the Cardinals offer is believe to be only about $10-11.5m for 3 years. That shouldn't be enough. The Cards may reportedly sweeten the deal, and the Hendricks brothers have stated Schmidt is looking to win above all.

The Yankees are already negotiating with Kei Igawa and they have an offer on the table (1 year/$15 million) for Andy Pettitte. They already have Mussina, Johnson and Wang locked up, not to mention Pavano if he is healthy. I'm not sure they would have room for Lilly.

Gosh - Lilly and Meche suck - I can't understand why the Cubs are so hot for them. Honestly it seems that the FA pitchers available all come with lots of baggage but why do the Cubs crave guys who give up the long ball and walk a ton of batters. On top of it Ted Lilly is at best a guy who can give a team 6 to 7 innings not exactly a work horse. Personally I would have preferred Maddux back and Batista. This is just insane!

Well I am sure glad we locked up DeRosa right off the bat at 3/13. wouldnt have wanted to get stuck with Loretta at 2/6 or god forbid Lugo at 4/36. I also with thank lord sweet baby jesus that we got Cesar Izturis as well.

RORY: It IS insane!! But - you either pay or don't play. You saw what the young kids did last year: one decent start - 3 bad ones, time after time. Which is expected. But now, the bar is supposedly raised higher than they ever have.

I wouldn't go so far as to say L/M "suck".

But mediocre is probably more accurate.

don't forget - Jeff Weaver "sucks" too. But he was kinda the World Series hero for the F-Birds.

Re: The Cubs outbidding the Angels by 21 million.

It sounds like a little bit of grandstanding coming out of Southern California. You gotta think that Morleno is catching a little bit of heat after losing out on both ARam and Soriano and then signing Sarge Jr to a 5/50 contract. And Believe it or not, the Cubs aren't the only team that tries to spin things to the fans when they don't go their way.

$21 Million isn't all that much compared to the overall contract. I suspect that means the Angels only offered 7 years, while Hendry got the deal done by giving Soriano the 8th year. If that is the case, that just means the difference between the teams two offers per year was under a million dollars.

Atleast Lugo and Loretta have proven over multiple seasons they can hit at the major league level. That is something Mark DeRosa has never done.

I think Aaron was being sarcastic, Mike - thus the "thank the lord sweet baby jesus for Cesar Isturis" comment at the end.

Loretta is probably done proving that he's worth having. He's declining rapidly. Todd Walker would be a much better option than Loretta.

Loretta is supposedly considering an offer from the Reds to platoon at First with Scott Hatteburg... that should tell you just about all you need to know about his value.

You know what....Jeff Suppan is looking better and better now.

Look at his numbers he is so-so for the first half and comes on strong in the second half. Last 3 years 4.41 ERA pre-allstar, 3.41 ERA post-allstar. In fact the last 2 seasons he posted ERA's of under 3.00 in the second half, 2.78 and 2.39.

I sure as hell like him more than Gil Meche. At least Suppan is a ground ball pitcher.

My sarcasm meter has been malfunctioning lately, my bad.

BLEED: Exc. point. Its just sour grapes slam. We all know full well that half a dozen teams would have loved to been able to pull the trigger and done what it took to sign Soriano.

And, as you say, Moreno lost out on the top two prizes this year.

If Hendry has to unload Jones, I hope he at least inquires about Ryan Freel.

He could play Center until Pie is ready and then be moved back into the Super-sub role that Cincy uses him in.

If Lou is serious about getting players plenty of rest during the season, we could do a lot worse than having our utility guy be Ryan Freel.

The Reds could use Jones also. They need a corner OF'er to fill in until Bruce is ready, and Jones could play Center if Griffey agreed to move into a corner spot. Plus Jones' contract isn't outrageous.

Obviously I'd rather see a large deal done involving Jones and a starting pitcher, but if Hendry gets into a position where he simply has to dump Jones for the sake of getting him out of Chicago, Freel wouldn't be a bad option.

I am not in favor of signing both Meche and Lilly, but realize Hendry may be in a dilema. If he waits for Schmidt (there are indications Schmidt may wait for others to sign and also he may be toying with non-west coast teams), one or both of M & L could be gone and if he loses out on Schmidt we are really in a poor state. I think if he signs M & L I could not blame him because it probably means that he doesn't want to risk waiting for Schmidt and he cannot get a decent pitcher for Jones. Hendry has to move now or be left behind. I would blow Schmidt away with a take it or leave it offer now and if he doesn't bite, sign the other two. Timing is everything.

LNL: Isn't The Riot pretty much a Ryan Freel-type? Why not just develop Theriot?

TJ: For sure - Hendry f'd up big time as discussed ad nauseum with the Furcal loss/trade of 3 Pitchers for a 1-yr. rental!

Now - he really has no choice under the "Win Now" mandate/mission: he MUST sign FA pitchers. He knows it. The AGENTS for sure know it too!

UGH!!!

I really wish that the Cubs would not, as per usual, air their dirty laundry before the trade, thus killing trade value. Nothing like devaluing and appearing desperate to move a player before trying to get something back in trade.

the E-man:
Two, Lilly and Meche are pretty close to the same pitcher with Lilly the edge in SO, BB, fly balls, but older.

As far as the results they will produce, you may be right, but I'd like to respectfully disagree with you about them being "pretty close to the same pitcher".

Lilly is a veteran, injury prone lefty, while Meche is more of an up-and-comer righty. Between the two I think I'm more of a fan of signing Meche because of his upside. I understand the Cub's not wanting to take any chances this next year on youth, but Meche makes more sense, IMO. However, signing a veteran with a shaky history of staying healthy would be very Cublike.

#18 of 19: By the E-Man (December 6, 2006 11:22 AM)

LNL: Isn't The Riot pretty much a Ryan Freel-type? Why not just develop Theriot?
----

As for his overall value as a utility guy, to me it looks like Theriot and Freel are very much alike.

However, I was looking at Freel more because of his ability to play CF as a bridge to Pie, and then be able to remain a pretty useful player after Pie is ready (pinch hitter, pinch runner, basically every position other than Catcher and SS). This would seem to me to be the difference between a Lofton and Freel.

I know it has been reported the Cubs plan on using Theriot in the Outfield, but I'm not sure if he can be counted on to be a CF bridge to Pie. I don't know much about Theriot's history in the OF though... maybe he's played CF a lot.

I just have never heard that he has, and if not, thats the main difference I see between Freel and Theriot and why it would at least make some sense if Jones must be traded and pitching can't be acquired.

Dave Kaplan said this morning on WGN radio that the Cubs have made an offer to Meche and that they expected him to decide today where to sign. I'd rather have Meche than Lilly as well, but both wouldn't hurt if they can't deal for someone better.

I'd love to see Hidalgo or Church.

Kaplan mentioned that they contacted Kenny Lofton's agent yesterday.

I doubt if they would bring in more than 1 OF, but if they trade JJ they'll bring in two from a pool like Floyd, Church, Hidalgo, Lofton, etc.

The Cubs outbid the Angels by $21 million!

What that really means is the Cubs offered $17 per year over 8 years and the Angels offered $15 per year over 7 years.

The Angels outbid the Cubs by $26 million on Gary Matthews, since the Cubs probably would have offered him three years at $8 per.

There is a stupid owner here, suprisingly, it isn't the Tribune.

I think the Angels trying to judge all free agent signings based on the bargain they got Vlad at, is a bit stupid, since Guerrero had back issues at the time. Imagine if he had gone the way of Mike Sweeney.

Theriot has never played the OF in a minor league or major league game. He did play a little OF in spring training, but that's all.

One more note, one source claimed the Cubs inquired about Aaron Rowand. That would be great but I don't think it would happen because A)they don't have the pitching to give up and B)why trade for the guy and let him walk in a year as a FA when the precious and overrated Pie is ready?

even if hendry does not end up overpaying for lilly and/or meche, he still has the option of overpaying (via trade) for jennings or westbrook.

or, freddie garcia. i am still (deranged and) convinced the cubs and southsiders will be doing some further business this off-season.

What that really means is the Cubs offered $17 per year over 8 years and the Angels offered $15 per year over 7 years.

Actually the Angels offer must have been closer to $16.5M per year for 7 years if the difference was $21 million.

But the point otherwise remains the same.

I found this tidbit from Phil Rogers in today's Tribune to be interesting. In debunking the Jones 3-way deal w/Col and Pit, Rogers posits that "...the Cubs value (Carlos) Marmol almost as much as Rich Hill, making him essentially untouchable."

Do the TCR scouts feel the same way about Marmol?

Rotoworld has a quip that the Cards are interested in Barry Bonds if the price is right. I don't think he will come that cheap, nor do I think he fits LaRussa's managerial style, but I would not want to face Bonds in a lineup with Rolen, Pujols, and Edmonds...

Yeah, I think I had a fat finger and subtracted 31 instead of 21.

I think Bonds and Larussa would get along great, Larusssa's probably stockpiled a decent stash by this point of PE drugs that I'm sure he's more than willing to share.

Do the TCR scouts feel the same way about Marmol?

This has already been mentioned several times, but yes, they believe that Marmol has some of the best raw stuff in the Cubs organization (which is true). remember...he has only been pitching for a couple of years, having been converted from a catcher.

His stuff is great, he just needs to reign in a bit.

non-Cubs related via Rotoworld...

Lieber for Mench/Turnbow is in place pending a Rowand/??? pitcher (possibly Gavin Floyd) for WSox pitcher (likely Freddy Garcia)

Manny rumors won't die, Dodgers believed to have offered Penny and 2 prospects while Mariners offered Sexon & Beltre or one or the other and JJ Putz.

And to follow up, Rob:

The Rockies have improved their proposal to Jason Jennings, offering him a three-year, $24 million contract with a fourth-year club option.

Rotoworld doubts that will get it done.

Borowski has signed as a closer with Cleveland @to ESPN. One of my favorite ex-Cubs.

So the Cubs are now offering Schmidt 4 years? I'm a bit confused--so they are going after both Schmidt and Lilly, so the trade with Colorado for Jennings is now dead? What about Meche? I thought he was going to make a decision today, and the Cubs were in front on that.

Until the signatures are on the contract, anyone can back out. But the Jennings rumor was never alive in the first place.

Now that the Cards have entered the fray on Schmidt, the Cubs need to be the bully on the playground and make sure whatever happens he doesn't go there, plain and simple.

I'm not understanding the direction and priorities at this point either Brian, although I hope before the Cubs turn to other options they make Schmidt turn down what they consider to be their best offer.

This seems to be the calm before the storm though. Offers are out everywhere, it can't take too much longer before some of the blocks start to fall. (Can it???)

I agree Rob.... do whatever it takes to block Schmidt from going to St. Louis. Having him and Carpenter locked up at the top of the rotation for the next few seasons would not be encouraging.

Schmidt to Dodgers, check the post

Dodgers sign Schmidt 3Y/$47M.

Fox Sports is reporting Dodgers reached agreement with Schmidt for 3 years/$47 Million

Rob-

Thanks for all the good work! Yet another example of why TCR is the destination of choice!

I will be curious to see how Lou handles the bullpen -- I remember the Nasty Boys, where they had 3 guys who could potentially close a game. How did Lou handle the pen in Seattle? With Dempster (still makes me nervous), Howry and maybe Wood (I know, I know), maybe Lou would go with a multi-headed closer approach. Those 3, plus Wuertz, Eyre and Cotts, should give the Cubs a pen that is at least deep, as it will probably get a lot of work again.

Ugh... stupid Dodgers.

dc60124:
...still has the option of overpaying (via trade) for jennings or westbrook.

I think this Westbrook business is hooky. The Indians have been up-front about not wanting to trade him.

I'm really really starting to hate that Ned Colletti guy.

I think a lot of the Tribe speculation had to do with them upgrading their pen, but they have been pretty active on that front over the past few days so I'm sure that desire is no longer there.

How does Schmidt no longer being an option change everyone's perception of signing Lilly and Meche, if at all?

I don't know much about Meche, but few here seem to like him. I really hope the Cubs re-open talks for Jake Westbrook.

Also, with Schmidt coming in, Penny is probably available. Any guesses on what it would take to snatch him? He's not a FA for a couple years yet, but I don't remember his contract specifics.

Little Nate Lewis:
How does Schmidt no longer being an option change everyone's perception of signing Lilly and Meche, if at all?

I think signing Schmidt would have automatically made the Cub's the favorite for the division. Now I think they'll have to get Jennings somehow and one of the overrated, overpaid FAs like Meche, Lilly, or Suppan.

Ok... kidding about Suppan... please keep him away.

Andrew:
Any guesses on what it would take to snatch him? He's not a FA for a couple years yet, but I don't remember his contract specifics.

Jacob Cauthen Westbrook: signed 2-year deal worth 7.5M on 1/24/05- he will make 2.9M in 2005 and 4.25M in 2006- + the deal includes a Team Option for 2007 worth 5.6M or a 350K buyout- + the value of the option can rise to 5.8M with 200IP in 2006 and to 6.1M with 210IP in 2006- + the value of the buyout can rise to 600K with 180IP in 2005- + the deal includes escalators based on top 5 finishes in Cy Young voting- + 2007 option value rose to $6.1M by reaching 210IP in 2006 on 9/30/06- + 2007 option worth $6.1M was EXERCISED by CLE on 10/3/06

- and -

Bradley Wayne Penny: signed deal for 2005 season worth 5.1M on 1/24/05- + he can earn performance bonuses: 25K each for 160 and 180IP and a 50K bonus for 200IP- + later signed 3-year EXTENSION worth 25.5M thru 2008 season on 6/8/05- + the deal includes a Team Option for 2009 season worth 9.25M or a 2M buyout- + he receives a 3M signing bonus that is paid in three installments of 1M each on Jan. 1 in 2006, 2007 and 2008- + he receives salaries of 4.5M in 2006, 7M in 2007, and 8.5M in 2008- + he receives a limited NO-TRADE clause, that allows him him to be traded to only 5 teams without his consent

From mlb4u.com

Brad Penny is being dangled for Manny Ramirez. At least they are trying to.

Thanks Ryno. I need to remember that site, as I'm always hunting for contract info.

I forgot about the Manny deal (silly me). Seems very possible Colletti will now package Penny and a prospect or two for Manny.

Detroit News reported today that the players that the Tigers are willing to trade this winter are Mike Maroth, Zach Miner, Chris Shelton and Marcus Thames.

No word on what they were seeking in return.

With the exception of Shelton, the other three would all look awesome in Wrigley for the right price.

in regards to Schmidt...

word was the Cards were offering 10.5 to 11 mil for up to 4 yrs, which is less of a total contract and less per year than he got from the Dodgers. There was a very unsubstantiated rumor of 4/60 from the Cubs, so he MAY have walked away from $13 million total BUT got a bit more on the annual salaray from the Dodgers.

Marlins may move Nolasco to the closer role

Luis Gonzalez leaning towards Dodgers as well which shoots my Jacque/Penny trade to bits...

I think it's clear that Jim Hendry has a problem with PRIORITIES. He said it himself, HIS JOB THIS WINTER was to fix the Cubs starting pitching. Instead, he's done everything but that ...unless you think Neal Cotts belongs in the rotation.

Penny/Ramirez was an ESPN Deportes rumored I mentioned in comment #33. It was penny and 2 prospects. If the prospects are Laroche and Broxton and the Dodgers take most of the contract, the Rsox better say yes quick.

With Schmidt off the board, I wish Hendry would really focus his attention on Zito. Yes his tendancy to give up the long ball would be an issue in Wrigley, and yes he's going to make more than he's worth.

That said, just like Soriano's deal doesn't look so bad when compared to Sarge2 or Pierre's contracts, I think the amount that Zito is going to get overpaid won't seem nearly as bad when compared to spending more than 10 million a year on the likes of Lilly or Meche.

Levine saying Hendry looking to sign both Lilly and Meche...gehhh. Steve Phillips noting SF may be in on Zito and that's why they've held off on resigning Barreoid. Says TEX will likely have the largest offer on the table, Mets won't go as high. Schmidt signed with LAD..hmm what a shock he stayed on the left coast at market value.

"There was a very unsubstantiated rumor of 4/60 from the Cubs, so he MAY have walked away from $13 million total BUT got a bit more on the annual salaray from the Dodgers."

I doubt that he walked away from a 4 year deal like that.

Personally, besides Zito, Suppan and maybe Padilla, you really don't know what you're going to get from most of these pitchers. At least with Aramis and Soriano, you can pretty much type in their numbers right now and be fairly close.

It's just a matter of finding the right fit. Zito's just not worth the 6/100 he's going to get especially when our own Z will be up for a deal next year, very possibly in that range depending if he prefers security over another chance to cash in, in about 3-4 years.

I'm not sure I'd call 15.67 a year market value on Schmidt. It certainly trumped the Cards offer as I mentioned. No one seems to be able to get a definite say on what the Cubs offered.

I'm out for awhile...

How about Jacque Jones and Scott Moore to the Phils for Aaron Rowand and Jon Lieber?

"How about Jacque Jones and Scott Moore to the Phils for Aaron Rowand and Jon Lieber?"

Yeah, maybe they will throw in Utley and Howard, too...

3/$44, 3/$45....3/$47 isn't market value? The Cards offer isn't concrete so we don't even really know if they offered 4 years. I suppose it doesn't really even matter if or what Hendry offered. He's maintained publicly that he never made an official offer and there's probably little chance he'll own it now if he truly did, as it will look like he failed.

I will be curious to see how Lou handles the bullpen

ESPN radio reported, a little while ago, that Lou has talked to Wood about wanting him to be the Cubs closer.

Why is it that 4/44 million dollars seems totally reasonable to the cubs for Lilly. Yet 6/72 was too much for tejada. 4/40 was too much for Renteria. And 7/112 was way to much on Beltran?

The Dodgers can have Schmidt at that price. I think he pretty clearly wanted to stay on the west coast and I doubt the Cubs were major players at any point. The talk on ESPN 2 over the noon hour was that 3/47 is too much of a risk to pay Schmidt and if Schmidt gets that, with his record last year, what could Clemens get if he decides to come back. Just speculating but I doubt we are major players for Zito. I think the question is do we get Meche, Lilly or Jennings or maybe two of them. My gut tells me we get only one and it probably will be Meche. If that is the only other pitcher we bring in, I think we could be in for a long, long season next year.

Why is it that 4/44 million dollars seems totally reasonable to the cubs for Lilly

Come on...it is pretty clear that the Cubs are working under a completely different paradigm now than they have in the past.

We can complain all we want about how the Cubs were not willing to spend money in the past, but it doesn't change anything about what is going to happen this winter.

I, for one, am just happy that they are finally willing to spend money. But because of the limited supply, they are now stuck paying significant money to lesser players. But at least they are paying the money and making the team better.

Blue Jays are out of the running for Lilly:

Agent Larry O'Brien said Wednesday that the Blue Jays are out of the running for free agent Ted Lilly.

"It's down to the Cubs and the Yankees," O'Brien said. It's unclear whether the Yankees have made an offer. That could come with the two sides due to meet later the afternoon. The Cubs have offered $40 million-$44 million for four years.

I don't like the idea of going head-to-head with the Yankees, but do they even need Lilly?

Sorry, forgot the source. That's from Newsday, via Rotoworld.

It's not just the Cubs working with a different set of economic circumstances, it seems to be many teams as contracts across the board are much higher then the last two years.

Sullivan was just on Murph's show on WSCR and he said Lilly's agent has a press conference scheduled in about 30 min? Did anyone else hear that?

I'm starting to get a bad feeling. If we are going head to head with the Yankees, guess who will win. Since Toronto lost out on Lilly, they will go all out for Meche. Guess what we could be left with- nothing. I don't like Lilly or Meche, but I realize the limitations on what is avaiable. I'll take Lilly and Meche over a repeat of last year with pitchers that weren't ready.

Here on the East Coast, I was just listening to Mike and the Mad Dog on WFAN in NY and they just said TOR is out on Lilly and that it is down to the CHC and NYY. They said the CHC have bid 4/40 and Lilly and his agent are talking to Cashman right now.

One more thought. If we have to overpay for mediocre pitchers, I would rather overpay with money than overpay with players via trade.

I don't get it. What are the Yankees going to do with Lilly? Middle relief?

Then again...it is not like the Yankees have any other wholes to spend their money on. They must just feel left out.

Sigh. $44 million is a lot of dough.

$44 million would be enough to trade to Boston for the rights to negotiate with Matsuzaka in about 10-14 days.

$44 million would be a nice down-payment on Barry Zito.

Hell, $44 million might be better spent getting the Cubs a year of Roger Clemens. Feed his stupid ego with the richest one-year deal until about 2030.

But I guess it's better than giving the spot to Prior, so hey, Hendry isn't technically paying to make the team worse!

Again, I don't know much about Meche, but the Cubs are reportedly his first choice, most likely because of the Piniella connection. So, if the BJ's are out of it, and if the Yanks sign Igawa or Pettitte, then conceivably the Cubs could end up with Meche and Lilly which I'm sure would just make Hendry tickled pink.

I'm not nearly as worried about the dollar amount as the length of any of all of these contracts. If these moves don't work we have a ton of money tied up over the next 4-5 years.

Still thinking about trade ideas for Jacque. There were rumors that Giles might be available out of San Diego, and while he definitely came back to earth last year, we could do worse in RF and in our #2 spot. Think we could get him for Jones and a decent pitching prospect?

dave:
I don't get it. What are the Yankees going to do with Lilly? Middle relief?

Then again...it is not like the Yankees have any other wholes to spend their money on. They must just feel left out.

I think there must be some pressure for the Yanks to do something... anything... after this last postseason. So far they haven't really done much.

I think there must be some pressure for the Yanks to do something... anything... after this last postseason. So far they haven't really done much.

Yea, I get that. But I don't see one (starting) player on the market, other than Pettit, that makes the Yankees any better.

Have you seen the SP market? The Yanks are just gathering pieces to be used later for trade bait (assuming they'd sign Lilly and/or Pettite)

Johnson
Wang
Mussina
Lilly
Pettite
Pavano
Igawa

FACE IT: Its gonna be Meche only on the North Side this year.

We have read in the last week that Lilly's #1 preference would be to join the Yankees again.

I do not recall the Cubs EVER "winning" on a signing when the Yankees are involved.

I will be shocked if he chooses the Cubs - Time to get ready for Gil Meche.

And then, a trade in the next 30 days or so which we can propose on this blog endlessly.

Ned Coletti bugs me too!

FWIW - Stoney on the SCORE today mentioned he felt the "ceiling was high for Meche". He likes him and looks at him as a solid solution as a #3 starter.

Problem is - the team will have two or three #3's!

thanks there "Steve Stone".....when you give us a link, I'll give you a forum.

STEVE STONE - Watch the double posts, please.

Funny post From the "On The Yankees Beat" blog:

"I hope the Yankees get Lilly. As a Blue Jay fan I can honestly say that the Yankees will have no chance at winning any games against the Jays in which Lilly pitches."

if anyone is wondering about comment #86, it's the same bogus Bill Wirtz claim from a previous thread.

espn radio just teased new cubs pitcher Lilly, but cant find confirmation on this.

BIGZ:

I did not hear this at all. I am listening to "The Duke's" on-the-hour
report right now. He said nothing of the sort during the Dan Patrick Show.

He stated, as have other sources, that Lilly will be making his mind up shortly between the Cubs and the Yankees". And, the posts above will tell you that O'Brien has not gotten a "serious" offer yet from the Yanks.

It would seem to me, that if I were a free agent, I would throw the Cubs name into the media just to drive my price up. Seeing how generous the Cubs have been this off-season, I'd be sure to include them in the list of possible teams.

In other news--file this under "I'm gonna be sick"

[Ken ''Hawk'' Harrelson is one of 10 finalists for the 2007 Ford C. Frick Award for Excellence in Broadcasting. As one of the top three vote-getters, he earned an automatic spot on the final ballot, along with Bill King and Joe Nuxhall.]

Don't you guys know Satire!
www.wirtzsucks.com

#80 of 83: By Andrew (December 6, 2006 03:13 PM)
Still thinking about trade ideas for Jacque. There were rumors that Giles might be available out of San Diego, and while he definitely came back to earth last year, we could do worse in RF and in our #2 spot. Think we could get him for Jones and a decent pitching prospect?

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

ANDREW: Actually, I would think the Padres might even trade Brian Giles even-up for Jacque Jones, or at least Jones and an MLB reliever.

Brian Giles (who will be 36 on Opening Day 2007) makes $9M per year as a member of he Padres, but he gets an automatic salary bump if he gets traded. So if the Cubs were to acquire Giles, here is what it would cost the Cubs in salary:

2007: $11M
2008: $11M
2009: $11M or $3M buy-out

On the other hand, Jones (who is a San Diego native, BTW) is four years younger than Giles, and will make only $4M in 2007 and $5M in 2008. (Jones also gets a $4M salary bonus that can be spread-out over three years 2006-08).

Even if Giles is the Cubs everyday CF in 2007-08, that is still about $6-7M more per year in salary than what Jacque Jones would cost, so I would think the Cubs would ask the Padres to take back some salary in a Jones-Giles deal, probably about $4M per year 2007-08. Which is exactly what Bob Howry makes. And with Trevor Hoffman (SD closer) and Scott Linebrink (SD #1 set-up man) both eligible to be FAs after next season, Howry could be a valuable guy for the Pads come 2008.

So maybe Jacque Jones & Bob Howry for Brian Giles might work, presuming the Cubs intend Giles to be their everyday CF in 2007-08. (Because $11M would be a lot to pay a guy to be a back-up or even platoon OF!).

The only other teams where Jones might fit that I can see are maybe ATL (as part of a deal for Tim Hudson?), BAL (for Corey Patterson and Kris Benson?), LAD (as part of a deal for Brad Penny?--unless they sign Luis Gonzalez to play LF), TEX (for Brad Wilkerson?), WAS (for Ryan Church and John Patterson?), STL (obviously no way), CLE (as part of a deal for Jake Westbrook?), OAK (for Milton Bradley?--who will be a FA after next season), or SF (for Randy Winn?--except Winn has a "no trade" through 2007).

I should of said ESPN1000 in Chicago. It was a tease for Mac, Jerko, Harry.

Steve Stone will be on the Score at 4pm Chicago time to talk baseball.

Sorry to see Schmidt go to the Dodgers, but for just under $16 mil per season, man, that's hard to take.

I think we can realistically blame Hendry for starting this outrageous free agent market for pitchers last year by paying $4 mil a year for relievers. Once you do that it's hard to tell an established starting pitcher, even a 4th or 5th starter, that you'll only offer $5-6 mil. So now those guys are getting $7-8 mil and bump everyone up the higher in the rotation you go.

I'm sure the market in time would have reached these levels, but I still think Hendry is the one who started it. Maybe next year we will be blaming Hendry for starting the market of paying .220 hitting utility guys $3 million a year.

Friggin Mac just retracted his bone headed call of Cub Lilly.

WFAN just reported that Soriano, a former teammate of Lilly's in NY, will be making a call tonight to Lilly to help recruit.

Wow -- we blame Hendry for a lot, but it's hard to hang pitcher salary inflation on him -- see entries for Pavano, C. and Burnett, A.J.

Jacko, I don't think it appropriate to put the blame on Jim. If not Jim, then someone else was going to step up. We needed to improve the bullpen, and if he did not step up last year, it would have remained a problem this year. Besides, shouldn't you hold the other GM's accountable, at least partially, for following suit and elevating salaries for middle relievers?

I really hope we don't end up with Meche and Lilly. Hopefully Lilly signs and Hendry can get a decent starter for Jacque.

Hendry's signing of Howry and Eyre were quick strikes, before Pavano and Burnett signed, just like his signing of DeRosa this year.

Hey, I'm not complaining they are spending money like water, I'm actually thrilled. It's the first time in my lifetime. But I think the clear demarcation point for pitching salaries suddenly taking a huge leap was the signings of Howry and Eyre.

When is Jeffrey Maier going to just go crawl under a rock and die? Every five minutes the no-name kid who stole a hr for the Yankees a decade ago is getting publicity, either for being a bad college pitcher with an old wife or for showing up at the winter meetings and proclaiming that he wants to be a GM.

I think Fox must be getting a cut out of any future salary the kid gets for writing annoying stories about him.

Cubs org. in full spin mode already on the Schmidt signing. Lou Pinella via espn, "Obviously Jason has had a great career but I don't think we ever got that far in discussions". ohh ok.

Rob-

I think you misread the Will Carroll bit.

He said that Schmidt's agent was lobbying hard for a 4th year from the Dodgers not all other teams.

That was the context of the blurb.

fun with searchengine queries...

some from the last 20...

"cindy sandberg"
"t"
"Is Theo Epstein gay?"
"Chip Cannon"

most the rest are normal....

I don't think it's clear, but I do think you're right on that one GRZ, I probably misinterpreted.

70 million and 5 years for JD Drew. GM Jr got 50 million. Would you rather have Drew for 70 or GMjr for 50? I think Theo got a good deal on Drew. Not that he is worth it, but he has got to be worth twice, at least, what GM jr is worth.

Vlad was a bargain at 15 mil.

http://preview.tinyurl.com/yg5n74

Manny deals won't die...J.J. Putz, Adam Jones and another player are what the Rsox are asking for and no help on the contract.

The Boston media is gonna eat Drew alive this year. He'll be grabbing his hamstring by the 3rd week of May and won't play in 90 games.

Would you rather have Drew for 70 or GMjr for 50? I think Theo got a good deal on Drew.

GMjr: .313/.371/.495 19 HR, 79 RBI, 102 R, 10 SB
Drew: .283/.393/.498 20 HR, 100 RBI, 84 R, 2 SB

I am not sure that Drew's 20 point advantage in OBP is worth 20 million dollars, especially when you factor in Drew's injury history.

this year? BOS media and fans are killing Epstein and this deal already. If Epstein actually does move ManRam, it's only going to get worse. Who is going to hit between Ortiz and Drew, Lowell, Varitek?

If Drew only plays in 3 of the 5 years, I take Sarge Jr.

Right now, with Manny, the lineup is nasty:

Youk
Lugo
Ortiz
Manny
Drew
Lowell
Varitek
Crisp
2b

Though I would bat Drew 2b and move Lugo down in the lineup.

With that said, 14 million a year for Drew? that is a helluva' lot of money for a guy who puts up decent, but nowhere near great, numbers.

When BOS could've resigned Damon or traded for Abreu at last season's deadline for fringe prospects, it's a bad deal.

Anybody think if Hendry loses out on Lilly, he'll go hard after Zito?

No one thinks the Phillies are a market for Jones? I think Victorino could play center, Jones in right or left if they move Burrell. Scott Moore could platoon with Helm at 3rd (or beat him out). We could get Lieber and Rowand for Jones and Moore and possibly Ohman. Just brainstromin' here...

I don't think I'd want to do that to Jacque......

You think Wrigley fans got on his case, poor fella might as well go out in the Pope mobile if he played in Philly....

"Anybody think if Hendry loses out on Lilly, he'll go hard after Zito?"

Yep. Definitely.

I dunno, I think Hendry is saving that long-term pitching contract for our own Z.

DAVE; Lugo is not that great. He TRULY is overated. We'll see. Also, you failed to recognize in your "comparison" that GMjr. had ONE good season.

Drew is money in the bank when he's healthy.

I'm gonna read up on Meche some more.

Wonder what number he's going to wear here?

Personally I don't want Zito. Not only will we get in a duel with the Mets and some other teams we can't and shouldn't outspend, I don't think Zito's going to be all that great, and certainly not in Wrigley.

Mike Gonzalez for Laroche trade has gone down but Braves are holding it up until they're sure about Gonzalez's health

via rotoworld

I'm not too high on Zito either, but Hendry might feel pressured into at least offering him a contract if he doesn't get Lilly. Zito would be great at Wrigley, with the wind blowing in. When it blows out, it would get ugly.

Drew is money in the bank when he's healthy.

Yea...but how often is that? And money in the bank? He has never put up great numbers. He has always put up good to decent numbers, but not exactly superstar numbers either.

Also, you failed to recognize in your "comparison" that GMjr. had ONE good season.

And I "forgot to mention" that Drew never stays health.

Lugo is not that great. He TRULY is overated.

Over the last few years lugo has been good. I never said he was great. But he has been quite good for a shortstop, and he makes Boston's lineup that much better.

With all of the talk about Lilly, Meche, Schmidt, and to a lesser extent Zito, why isn't Jeff Suppan getting any love? He seems to be a pitcher that is every bit as valuable as Lilly and Meche, but I haven't heard his name mentioned in relation to the Cubs. With FA pitchers coming off the board every few days, Hendry should put a call in to Suppan's agent.

Mike Gonzalez for Laroche trade has gone down but Braves are holding it up until they're sure about Gonzalez's health

via rotoworld

nice deal for the Pirates. They don't need a closer if they are going to suck, and Gonzo isn't a top level closer anyway. Pitt gets a very solid, relatively young 1b to have for at least a couple of years.

For more on Suppan, see Mike C's post at #13.

I would guess that Suppan might get a call if they lose out on Meche and/or Lilly. I definitely would prefer him over Meche.

http://www.all-baseball.com/kauffman/archives...

Hopefully we don't all reach this point one day with the Cubs.

http://braves.scout.com/2/598302.html

word be that the Braves received Rafael Soriano for Horacio Ramirez.

Braves are loading up in the 'pen.

DAVE:

If Lugo was "good" in your book last year, than so was Cedeno.

Look up his ranking for all SS in the MLB. IS that still "good"?

Re: Drew, please be specific what you determine to be "Superstar Numbers".

Is a career .393 OBP not "great" for Drew. Or, is this just "good" like you say for Lugo? .286 Career BA in 9 seasons. How 'bout his health?

Well, to his credit, last year he was able to tough it out through 494 AB's. Not too bad, eh?

What about RBI's? Can Drew drive 'em in? 100 last year - his average is 86 RBI's over the 9 years. So would this be "great", "very good", "good", or better than average?

In my opinion, Lugo would be "mediocre", and for '06 - HE SUCKED!! Not worth bothering with for major bucks...

I don't like Lugo, but his first half of the season in Tampa certainly didn't suck.

Lugo's first half in Tampa:

.308 .373obp .498slg

Lugo's second half in very limited ab's in LA:

.219 .278 .267 but those were in under 150 ab's.

Like I said, I don't like the guy, but you can't throw out his TB numbers for last year or his previous seasons down there. He was a more than servicable SS. Better than Cedeno for sure.

Really, Rob? You'd prefer Suppan to Meche? I'm not a big Meche fan, but I've seen enough Suppan to know that he's a below-average pitcher with shaky tools. He's 31 and will probably get a 3 to 4-year contract. Without Duncan, the fan support of STL, and with natural aging, he's dangerously close to completely tanking.

Maybe I just haven't seen enough Meche. But at least he's got skills and is young(er). Damn, I don't know. Hopefully Hendry pulls a Jennings or Westbrook trade.

Yeah - of course better than Cedeno.

But - what about the rest of his career?

Compare it to JD Drew's.

Shoot - compare it to Furcal's.

Overated? "Great"?

"What about RBI's? Can Drew drive 'em in? 100 last year - his average is 86 RBI's over the 9 years. So would this be "great", "very good", "good", or better than average?"

That would be "not worth $14 million a year".

According to MLBtraderumors.com, quoting Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post Dispatch, the deal between the Dodgers and Schmidt isn't a done deal and that Schmidt and his agent want to continue discussions with the Cardinals. This was posted at 4:14 CST, so it's fairly recent.

to each their own...

Suppan has had an ERA+ of league average or better since 1999 sans 2002 ans has pitched over 180 innings in each of the last 8 seasons, hitting 200 five times.

Meche has never had an ERA+ at league average or better for a season where he's pitched more than 100 innings and has hit 180 innings plus twice in the last 4 seasons and has never hit 200 innings.

Both guys walk a ton of guys, Meche strikes out more hitters. Home run rates seem to favor Suppan.

Meche throws 98 mph at times though...

Suppan keeps the ball down.

I'll take Suppan, thanks. A little reliabilty over another "wish and a prayer" guy would be good for our rotation.

Suppan's career stats are favorable to Meche's, and Suppan is an inning eater, something neither Meche nor Lilly are.

Meche has a career era above lg avg 4.65/4.45 and a 1.439 career whip

Suppan has a career era below lg avg 4.60/4.67 and a 1.416 career whip

Similar numbers, but then factor in that Suppan eats innings - 8 straight years of 188 or more, 5 of those over 200.

Meche has twice been in the 180's, with a 143 and a 127 thrown in there.

I wouldn't mind Suppan. We just have to remember that there are no true number 2 starters available in free agency, no matter what anyone pays these guys.

If Meche could stay healthy and get a good pitching coach I would be thrilled to get him since so many scouts and GM's are saying he is coming into his prime and has as good a stuff as Schmidt. But I don't have much faith in Rothschild. Actually I have 0 faith in Rothschild. In that case it might be better to at least get some sure-thing innings by signing Suppan instead.

Just for the heck of it, here are Lilly's career era - just a notch above lg avg 4.60/4.56 with a 1.378 whip. Again, those are the numbers of a 3rd or 4th starter.

Actually Drew has been physically healthy the last 3 years. The only thing that disrupted that was a pitch that broke his wrist. Can't very well blame him for that.

And I highly doubt Drew is going to bat 5th for Boston. They are going to put him in the #2 hole and let him walk his ass off in front of Ramirez and Ortiz.

Lugo will lead-off as Boston likes his .350ish OBP and have soured on Crisp.

STEVE: "that would be "not worth $14 million a year".

Yes. True. True.

But, the "old" FA business model is now forever distorted, right? so, our perceived "value" of what a player is worth, Lugo, Soriano, Drew, et. al. is completely changed probably for a long time.

Lugo's batting rankings among SS: 2003 - 12th, 2004 - 8th, 2005- 4th, 2006 Averaging Entire Season - "bad"

His fielding is nothing to write home about either.

If Lugo was "good" in your book last year, than so was Cedeno.

I never said he was "good" this year, did I? I said over the last few years. Don't put words in my mouth.

As for the numbers you gave for Drew, yes, a .393 OBP is very good. But that is the only stat of his that I would say is "very good."

.286 BA? 86 RBI? Those are definitely no superstar numbers, nor would I say they are worth 14 million a year. Then again, Soriano's numbers are not worth 17 million a year.

In this skewed market Drew's good, but not great, numbers may worth his new contract. But adding in his injury history, and that contract looks bad.

http://preview.tinyurl.com/u5adu

the link he speaks of in #139

#139

check the front page of mlb.com

"Jason Schmidt is ready to see how the other half of the rivalry lives, telling former Giants teammates that he's accepted a three-year, $47 million deal with the Dodgers".

with R.Soriano going to the ATL, guess that should put an end to the ManRam to SEA for Putz and prospects rumor. B-Globe's Bob Ryan said today that the whole ManRam trade proposals are a another smoke screen to appease ManRam's annual desire to leave BOS.

Lugo will lead-off as Boston likes his .350ish OBP and have soured on Crisp.

for some reason that reminded me of a Chappelle show line by Charlie Murphy - "the milk has gone bad!"

Damnit, why are the Cards being considered by Schmidt but not the Cubs? Pay up, Hendry and sign the dude.

If not, then Colletti, let's ice this deal now.

Whatever, Dave. "The last few years" - few meaning 3 - would include last year.

We can revisit this in June and see if he is good, great, or still mediocre, and if he is helping the BoSox win another pennant.

well Drew hasn't quite been Griffey as a Red fragile, but he's also had only 1 500+ AB season and that was barely over at 518 in his final season with the Braves.

E-man...put it this way - he is a significant upgrade offensively over what they had last year. He makes their lineup better.

You are basing your dislike of the guy off of one half of a season with limited at-bats.

And by the way...your comparison to Cedeno is way off:

Cedeno: .245/.271/.339
Lugo: .278/.341/.421

Which player would you rather have?

Will Carroll picked up on the deal not being done quite yet on Schmidt in his latest update, fwiw.

Pettitte has decided he wants to pitch next year, which might make the Yankees less likely to go deep on Lilly if they think they can bring back Pettitte, just my guess there...

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

ROB G: Suppan has had an ERA+ of league average or better since 1999 sans 2002 ans has pitched over 180 innings in each of the last 8 seasons, hitting 200 five times.

Be honest - wouldn't it give you a bit of a charge if Hendry picked up Suppan and he stuck it to his old team?

HA!

Rosenthal reports that the A's have signed Mike Piazza. 1 year/$8.5 million.

http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/6245152

Latest rumors have Meche leaning toward Toronto and Lilly toward the NYY.

It's time for Hendry to find Schmidt's agents and offer a 4 year, 60 mil contract.

only an hour behind Blue-Eyed Monster, check the actual post at the 4:05 pm update.

From SI.com, "Ted Lilly has told the Yankees he'd join them if they're willing to give him a four-year, $40 million contract."

Good.

Though ESPN has Pettitte declaring he will pitch next season so that could throw a cog into the Yanks offer to Lilly. ESPN says Pettitte will choose between the Astros and Yanks.

You can't really look at Suppan's whole career. You need to look at his last 3 years to judge him. In fact that goes for a lot of players.

The last 3 years he has had a 3.74 ERA at home and a 3.94 ERA on the road. He doesn't have the drastic home/road splits that Gil Meche has that tells you he benefits greatly from the stadium he was pitching in.

The difference when I look at Suppan and Meche is about 1 full earned run. Meche will likely be a 5.00 ERA pitcher, Suppan a 4.00 ERA.

Slap a decent infield defense behind him and it benefits him. I think we have that in Ramirez, Izturis, DeRosa and Lee.

#159. my bad, didn't refresh the homepage.

DAVE: And by the way...your comparison to Cedeno is way off:

Cedeno: .245/.271/.339
Lugo: .278/.341/.421

Of course - have a sense of humor! Cedeno was "BAD", I'd certainly prefer Lugo if given the choice. But are Lugo's numbers hugely better?

Can Lugo be considered "good" after last year? I suppose. But its a stretch. We throw out supurlatives way too easily in our society now. Joe Thiesman thinks everyone is "great"!

SO - Which Lugo will show in Boston - the .219 hitter that was on the Dodgers, or the .278 from the Rays?

I guess the $38MM is betting it will be the latter. It sure better for the Red Sox, right?

Later

the funny thing about the lugo vs. anyone comparisons is theyre not really taking into account lugo is a pretty bad SS...and an inexcusable 2nd baseman.

this signing coming from a team who shifted renteria because they were concerned about his D amongst other things. go figure.

Check the post, we may have confirmation on Meche.

I will point out to that many people disagree with your assessment of Lugo's defense, crunch. Of course, many agree as well.

But are Lugo's numbers hugely better?

yes...

33 points in average, 70 points in obp, 80 points in slugging. Those are "hugely" better, without a doubt.

Cedeno: .245/.271/.339
Lugo: .278/.341/.421

are Lugo's numbers hugely better?

If 30 points of Ave, 70 points of OBP, and 80 points of SLG aren't "hugely better" then what would be? A difference of 150 OPS is pretty huge in my book.

SO - Which Lugo will show in Boston - the .219 hitter that was on the Dodgers, or the .278 from the Rays?

That's pretty dishonest.

First of all, Lugo wasn't a .278 hitter with the Rays, he was a .308 hitter in Tampa last year. The .278 is his overall stats from last year.

Not to mention (again), but Lugo's poor numbers in LA came in just 150 ABs, and I for one think its foolish to make long term judgements on 150 ABs when they are a pretty large departure from his career and 3 year stats.

SeattlePI from 4:55 p.m. CST:

http://blog.seattlepi.nwsource.com/baseball/a...

Says the B-Jays thought they were beaten out by the Cubs for Meche, but a half hour later, they're more optimistic.

Piniella says he's been trying to call Meche, but can't get through.

Levine - "Hendry closing in on a deal with Lilly" whatever that means. Perhaps Pettitte unexpectedly announcing he's going to return so soon, that means that he's told the Yanks he's willing to come back.

Stop with the argument already guys. Lugo is a much better player than Cedeno.

Pinella on Lilly via espnradio, "he's a good left handed pitcher". now that's depth.

already up Andrew....

O.K. Dave, I give up. Lugo is for sure MUCH better than Cedeno, who will NEVER be "great" or a "Superstar", unfortunately.

I was so exceited last year when the season started to see him every day and was truly disappointed.

ROB G: On the home page - the latest link to the Marinier's page has some pretty favorable comments by M's fans.

Thought it was interesting.

I know you don't like him too much, but...

Anyway, it seems like the Lilly signing sits purely on the pen of a Brian Cashman. Man, I HATE the Yankees. Not the much as the Cards, mind you - but.....UGH!

"Piniella says he's been trying to call Meche, but can't get through."

Lou is starting to remind of that William Shatner character on Boston Legal -- he's chasing around a bunch of mediocre pitchers like they're Candy Bergen.

yeah I read that too E-man, let's all hope it turns out well for us.

And if Jimbo gets SHUT OUT? Then What, guys?!!!

its a long time til march and the cubs got bullpen help to spare...along with a pretty damn cheap LH OF'r who wants a new home.

and seemingly they got millions to blow still, too.

And if Jimbo gets SHUT OUT? Then What, guys?!!!

Mark Prior? Kerry Wood?

Lilly looking GOOD:

Just heard this with my own ears - Bruce Levine just reported that a 4 year deal with Ted Lilly is being wrapped up - the Hendry/Soriano/Lou press helped, according to him.

Stay tuned...

Rotoworld is now saying the Dodgers are officially shopping Brad Penny for a CORNER OUTFIELDER...hmmm...how much would it take in addition to Jones to swing that? Guzman and Ohman???

Addendum: when I stated "wrapped up", I meant an agreement will be in place soon (according to Levine).

http://preview.tinyurl.com/y6q6hw

Piniella already has a lineup...

Soriano
Izturis or Murton
Lee
Ramirez
Jones
Barrett
Derosa
Izturis or Murton

says Murton will get plenty of PT, likes Theriot, Pagan and Blanco. Pie may get a shot at CF out of spring training. It seems to indicate Murton will be a platoon/super-sub either with Jones or whomever they bring in. I read somewhere else they may try Murton in right as well.

Sweeney Murti reports on WFAN

1. The Yanks aren't 4/40 interested in Lilly, especially after Pettitte has indicated that he'd come back. That leaves the Cubs, which should "get done tonight."

2. TOR is the favored destination for Meche.

3. The Mets are probably going to opt out of the Zito running because of the years and the money.

"And if Jimbo gets SHUT OUT? Then What, guys?!!!"

ESPN's J.Crasnick reporting the Dodgers are already talking about moving Penny.

soriano for h.ramirez (sea/atl) supposedly done.

that throws a kink in any team looking to fill ATL's pen and maybe get t.hudson in return.

http://braves.scout.com/2/598302.html

comment #131 crunch...

"there was a report somewhere earlier today Bogey that Petitte was either going to the Yanks or retiring."

Most likely the case though if the Rocket shoots Pettitte a text saying I'm coming back to the Stros, Pettitte would likely stay home in HOU. Otherwise yes, makes sense to wrap up his career where is started...sorta like what Maddux was supposed to do.

doh.

schmidt 3/44m anyone?

if someone can confirm E-man's comment #181 on Lilly, I'll post it.

I usually like 2 trusted confirmations on the radio reports unless I hear it myself. E-man counts as one.

Yeah sorry, didn't see that, Rob.

"Out-of-shape players under Guillen's skin"

http://chicagosports.chicagotribune.com/sport...

Looks like Scott Eyre won't be playing for the Sox anytime soon.

"Hendry's signing of Howry and Eyre were quick strikes, before Pavano and Burnett signed, just like his signing of DeRosa this year."

Did Hendry borrow Doc Brown's time machine to go back in time and make the Howry/Eyre deals before Pavano signed with the Yankees?

no worries Andrew, I'm being a jerk about it the last few days because I figure if I'm going to go through the effort of this live blogging/update thing, I'd prefer not to get trumped or repeated and I'd like to believe that people actually read what I write. :)

If I'm busy I'll usually say that I'll be out for awhile, at the very least check the actual post. It's my little request.

Hope people understand...

#191. nope Levine hasn't confirmed anything.

No - agreed. It is NOT confirmed yet. Please do not post - just stay tuned. He is pretty reliable for the most part, but indeed was seemingly quite assured that something had been agreed upon...

I was really interested in Suppan a couple of months ago, because he's an under the radar type guy and provides the innings eater stability the Cubs need. Then he got "big game pitcher" status in the post-season... combine that with this market and he'll get $10-$11 mil for 4-5 years. He would be a quality guy, but it's doubtful he'd be any better than Meche. His health and IP totals are a big part of what make him valuable.

#178 of 197: By the E-Man (December 6, 2006 06:37 PM)
And if Jimbo gets SHUT OUT? Then What, guys?!!!

a. call colorado and do a jennings deal or
b. call the indians and do a westbrook deal or
c. call kenny soxman and do a freddie deal or
d. call theo and do a wakefield deal or
e. call l.a. ned and do a penny deal or
f. call florida and see how steep the price is for dontrelle or what the hell
g. call baltimore and see how steep the price is for bedard- the o's will be competitive sometime in the next 20 years, and the cubs window is NOW.

I think I owe you an apology Andrew for comment #169. Your post actually has the part where the Blue Jays official changed his tune, mine did not. So it was new information....

DC: Tim Wakefield?

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