Prior Engagement

UPDATE: A Cubs press release says he experienced shoulder discomfort and will see Dr. Yocum within the next few days. (Rob G.) It was Almost Cy Young 2003 versus Hopefully Cy Young 2013, as Mark Prior faced-off against Chris Huseby in an EXST intrasquad game at Fitch Park Field #3 this morning in sunny and warm Mesa, Arizona. At EXST ostensibly to increase his pitch count so that he can (hopefully eventually) join the AAA Iowa Cubs starting rotation, Prior went just two innings (31 pitches), giving up one hit, no runs, and one walk, with one K (Ryan Harvey - swinging) and a 4/1 GB/FB. He was just so-so, as he continually missed with his fastball and bounced his curve ball, and his velocity did not appear to be any better than it was during ST last month, although I don't know exactly what it was. After his two-innings and 31 pitches, he walked to the clubhouse with one of the trainers. Prior pitch-by-pitch: Mark Prior's 1st INNING: Hao Guo-chen at bat Pitch #1: Strike one (swinging) Pitch #2: Strike two (foul - straight back) Pitch #3: Ball one (curve ball in dirt) Pitch #4: Ball two (curve ball in dirt) Pitch #5: 5-3 ground out One out Blake Parker at bat Pitch #1: Ball one (way high) Pitch #2: Ball two (way high) Pitch #3: Strike one (swinging - curve ball in dirt) Pitch #4: Ball three (low and away) Pitch #5: Strike two (called - fastball right down the middle) Pitch #6: Ball four (low and outside) Parker walks Elvis Lara at bat Pitch #1: strike one (called - fastball right down the middle) Pitch #2: Ball one (fastball way up) Pitch #3: Ball two (curve ball - low) Pitch #4: Strike two (foul tip on fastball) Pitch #5: Easy DP one-bouncer to 3B, Parker out at 2nd, relay to 1st by second-baseman Valentin thrown over first-baseman's head for E-4 Two outs Inning terminated after two outs and 16 pitches Mark Prior's 2nd INNING: Ryan Harvey at bat Pitch #1: Strike one (called - fastball) Pitch #2: Strike two (swinging - curve) Pitch #3: Ball one (high - fastball) Pitch #4: Foul (curve - squibbed) Pitch #5: Strike three (swinging - fastball) One out Sammy Baez at bat Pitch #1: Strike one (foul - near HR high fly pulled down LF line) Pitch #2: Line single to left-center Baez on first base, one out Elvin Puello at bat Pitch #1: Strike one (called - fastball) Pitch #2: Strike two (called - curve) Baez steals 2B Pitch #3: Pop up into short CF, F-8 out Two outs, runner still on second Andres Quezada at bat Pitch #1: Ground ball to second-base, easy 4-3 out, Baez advances to 3rd Three outs (but inning continues because Prior has only thrown 11 pitches) Cody Gilbert at bat Pitch #1 Strike one (swinging) Pitch #2 Ball one (high - fastball) Pitch #3: Easy ground ball to 3rd baseman, out 5-3 Four outs Inning terminated after four outs and 15 pitcbes There are no specific "Boise" or "Mesa" teams yet, so the players at EXST are Mesa/Boise mixed together, and so are the teams for the intrasquad games. Innings are stopped when the pitcher reaches his pitch limit for that inning (15-20), and the games usually go only seven innings. Today, there was only one umpire (the home plate ump). Ryan Harvey (who is rehabbing from a hamstring injury) was the DH for both teams, and was 0-4 with three Ks (all swinging) and a weak foul pop out to 1st base. Two players from Team China who are working out with the EXST Cubs at Fitch Park were in the starting lineup as well (Team China players are assigned to various MLB EXST camps around Arizona). TEAM "A" Hao Guo-chen, C (Team China) Blake Parker, 1B Elvis Lara, 2B Ryan Harvey, DH (replaced by Carlos Perez in the 6th) Sammy Baez, SS Elvin Puello, 3B Andres Quezada, CF Cody Gilbert, LF Clifford Andersen, RF Chris Huseby, RHP (innings 1-2) Robert Hernandez, RHP (innings 3-4-5) Kevin Kreier, RHP (innings 6-7) NOTES: On offense for Team "A," Team China's Hao had two hits (single with a run scored and an RBI double) and looked quick as a cat behind the plate. (A Chinese translator was stationed on the bench and would go to the mound whenever there was a conference). 19-year old Cliff Anderson (2006 9th round pick out of Cottonwood HS in Salt Lake City) was 2-3 with two singles and two runs scored and a nice running catch into RF foul territory, and C-3B-1B Blake Parker ('06 16th round pick out of the University of Arkansas) had a walk and an RBI single. 19-year old RHP Chris Huseby (2006 11th round pick who got second-round money to sign in order to dissuade him from going to Auburn) went two innings (29 pitches), allowing no runs on one hit and one walk, with two K and a GIDP. 18-year old Venezuelan RHP Robert Hernandez (5-2 3.20 at AZL Mesa last year) threw three innings and was outstanding, nine up and nine down with 4 K on 43 pitches. 19-year old RHP Kevin Kreier (2006 20th round pick out of Foothill HS in Henderson, NV) is making his pro debut in 2007, and went two innings, allowing one run (earned) on one hit and one walk, with 2 K. Team "B" Steve Clevenger, C Mario Mercedes, 1B Cesar Valentin, 2B Ryan Harvey DH (replaced by Carlos Perez in the 6th) Nathan Samson, SS Gian Guzman, 3B Drew Rundle, CF Edgar Herrera, LF Qi Ze, RF (Team China) Mark Prior, RHP (innings 1-2) Matt Maradeo, RHP (innings 3-4-5) Brad Clipp, RHP (inning 6) Oswaldo Martinez, RHP (inning 7) NOTES: NOTE: Team "B" had only two hits, but Steve Clevenger (2006 7th round pick out of Chipola JC) was 1-2 with a walk and an RBI double and did a nice job benind the plate (he is an infielder who is being converted to catcher) and made a solid throw to 2B on a stolen base attempt. Besides Prior, Matt Maradeo (23-year old 2006 NDFA signed out of Kutztown State) worked three innings, allowing three runs (no earned runs) on two hits, no walks, with seven K (seven of the first eight hitters he faced!). Slinging sidearm, Maradeo threw strike-after-strike and was unhittable until the very end when his defense (Mercedes at 1B and Herrera in LF) made two errors you normally only get to see in Little League around a couple of singles. Brad Clipp ('06 33rd round draft pick out of Loma Nazarene University) didn't take any chances with the defense and just struck out the side in a 1-2-3 6th, and 18-year old Mexican RHP Oswaldo Martinez gave up a run on two hits (with two K) in his one inning of work.
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Comments

Any word on the injury, Phil?

so far WSCR says right side like oblique, Levine on ESPN says shoulder...

Great,

So basically nobody knows what happened.

I blame Michael Barrett.

does it really matter anyway? If the Cubs were counting on Prior to save the season we were doomed to begin with. Let Guzman build up some confidence in the pen for a couple more weeks and then give Wade the boot.

Guzman has had his injury problems too, he's no sure fire answer.

We need to trade Murton

How soon until the call to Glendon?

How is Sean Marshall doing?

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

yeah, shoulder it is...never listen to the Score.

visit to Dr. Yocum within the next few days.

"We need to trade Murton..."

Can Murton pitch?

Hopefully he decides to have surgery to get the joints in his shoulder tightened.

Maybe Prior can be a bullpen guy in 2009?

Guzman is a better answer than a broken down 88mph 2 pitch throwing Mark Prior. I just hope that he is eased in slowly like the Twins do with their young starters. For once I like the Cubs plan with keeping him in the bully to gain confidence.

I was Joking E-Man. Everyone is on a trade Murton kick for some unknown reason. I do believe this is somehow Michael Barrett's fault.

If Mark Prior were to have season-ending shoulder surgery and miss the rest of the 2007 season, he will not accrue any MLB service time in 2007 and thus will not be eligible to be a FA until after the 2009 season, or possibly even after the 2010 season (that would be if he gets optioned out to Iowa again next year, because he will have one minor league option left in 2008).

Because he was optioned to Iowa at a time when he was saying his shoulder felt fine, he probably can't now get away with claiming that the injury pre-dated the optional assignment. So it looks like he's stuck.

If he has surgery, the only thing that could save his post-2008 FA date is if the Cubs recall him from the optional assignment and place him on the 60-day DL later this season in the event the Cubs need Prior's slot on the 40-man roster for a player acquired in a trade. Once a player gets recalled from the minors and is placed on the 60-day DL, he doen't count against his club's 40-man roster, but he does start to accrue MLB service time again.

But it's also very possible that if Prior has shoulder surgery, the Cubs will non-tender him after the '07 season (making him a FA on December 12th), rather than go to arbitration with him where the absolute worst he could get is a 20% pay cut from his $3.575M 2007 salary And I doubt that the Cubs would want to pay Prior $2.8M next season to rehab from shoulder surgery just so they can keep him under club control for another year. Since he knows that, I'm betting he gets the surgery and then counts on getting non-tendered by the Cubs after the season (making him a FA on December 12th).

Good riddance. I can't believe the money the Cubs waste each year on this guy. 2004, OK, no problem. 2005 even, no sweat. But last year was bad, and paying him again this year, that was just plain stupid. Yes, I non-tender him, let him be someone else's $4MM option plan.

Plus, I just plain don't like him. Never have.

I completely disagree Jason.

#17. Great point AZPhil, I didn't even think about that. Personally I hope Prior pitches this season and can propel his FA exit back to SoCal at the end of '08. Out of sight, out of mind.

AARON: "I was Joking E-Man..."

Me too. But since Murton is our emergency catcher, maybe he pitches too?

guzman, cotts, or w.miller...next up in 1-2 weeks after miller gets his next chance(s).

AZ Phil-

Sean Marshall?

JACOS: Sean Marshall is at EXST and barring any setbacks should be joining the Iowa rotation probably sometime in the next couple of weeks.

I think the big issue with Marshall is not pitch counts, but rather (and this would be true for Mateo and Novoa, too) it has more to do with the Cubs not wanting them to pitch in cold weather.

It's not too cold here in Mesa today, though. It was bright and sunny this morning for the EXST intrasquad game at Fitch Park at 9:30, but now it's cloudy and windy, although at least the temps are still in the 80's. I guess I'll just have to try and deal with it.

http://www.startribune.com/10136/gallery/1116...

drawings of the potential new Twins ballpark...

where is the drawing of the Twins ballpark with 3 feet of snow covering the outfield?

Mark Prior? Fascinating stuff for a snow day but hey, I've moved on...as Harry would say, "it's Kram Roirp", spelled backwards.

We should spell Mark Prior "J-o-e M-a-u-e-r", or "Miguel Tejada" would do as an alternative.

Eric, thanks for that. Excuse me as I'm going to burn my Prior jersey and put the ashes in an urn.

Prior injured again??? SHOCKING I tell ya....

Can we worry about Prior yet, or is it still too early??????

Go Cubs!!

"We should spell Mark Prior “J-o-e M-a-u-e-r”, or “Miguel Tejada” would do as an alternative."

That's COLD, Eric! (but good anyway)

Maybe Hendry should go out and get another right handed power bat ----also required- he needs to have zero speed ----have very little feel for defense---and be very unagressive on the bases. Added Bonus, he must play Left Field.

solution: Pat Burrell --

I have a Prior authentic jersey that I bought after game 2 of nlcs.

sigh

"Mem’ries,
Like the corners of my mind
Misty water-colored memories
Of the way we were"

I've said this before, but thought I'd repeat. What about bringing Prior back as a catcher?

Rynox-
He can't throw!!! And save me the Barrett jokes!!

Twins new park looks like it has all the warmth of the Cell.

No ROOF!!!!

Say Hello to the Delorean of MLB Stadiums.

anyone who's watching the braves/nats game can explain to me why smoltz pitched through the entire 8th...or even started the 8th...or stayed in the game after a HBP, a walk, and a wild pitch...or the 2 singles after that...

well, i'd like to hear about that.

that was a very very very odd 1/2 inning.

btw, no i dont have smoltz on any fantasy baseball teams...just watching some games. getting my money's worth outta EI.

I was thinking that very thing, crunch. Impressive to see the Bergmann and two other Nationals 1 hit the Braves through 8, however.

"crunch — April 12, 2007 @ 7:39 pm

anyone who’s watching the braves/nats game can explain to me why smoltz pitched through the entire 8th…or even started the 8th…or stayed in the game after a HBP, a walk, and a wild pitch…or the 2 singles after that…

well, i’d like to hear about that."

It's obvious why; Bobby Cox burns out pitchers.

Er...E-Man...you know that the Twins drafted Mauer ahead of the Cubs drafting Prior, right?

Reds put shortstop Alex Gonzalez on the bereavement list...so that's one less .313 hitter Z's got to deal with...

http://tinyurl.com/2qrx2r

at first I thought it might be Alex S. Gonzalez grieving on the Prior news... (ouchie)

Mark Prior is already dead to the average Cub fan. This news of his latest mystery ailment is little surprise. Frankly, I don't give a damn. His major league future was already long over. The bastard has stolen money from the Cubs for four years. Prior is the most reprehensible pile of shit that has ever worn a Cub uniform in my 30 plus years of passionately following this ballclub.

Fuck Mark Prior. He sleeps with the fish.

mark prior drinks puppy blood, too.

i saw it on youtube. :[

Can you steal it if it's offered to you? An interesting paradox...

My vote for "most reprehensible piece of shit" has to be Gary Scott in a runaway.

I will not debate this.

Just saw that excellent Moises/Jacque-esque baserunning by Carl Crawford in the 9th this evening.

Took the D-Rays from 2nd and 3rd with nobody out to the bases empty with two outs in about 4 seconds.

So instead of scoring at least one run to take the lead, they don't score and Morneau walked off in the ninth.

Wish we woulda traded for him like some folks wanted. He's already got the Cub baserunning down.

I blame Rothschild. Prior had perfect mechanics when he came up in 2003. I doubt he would've gotten so farked up under... say, Leo.

perfect mechanics or not, pitching is still a hell of a thing to do to your body.

prior's perfect mechanics are pretty much as good as it gets...but 'perfect' is a bit strong. "textbook mechanics" is more like it. he kept his body still, drove with his legs, and flowed off the mound naturally. his head barely moved.

he's not a machine, though...he's human. he's also a victim of his own hype given how much he was an example of a highly mechanically refined young pitcher.

Silent Towel:

Mark Prior is already dead to the average Cub fan. This news of his latest mystery ailment is little surprise. Frankly, I don’t give a damn. His major league future was already long over. The bastard has stolen money from the Cubs for four years. Prior is the most reprehensible pile of shit that has ever worn a Cub uniform in my 30 plus years of passionately following this ballclub. Fuck Mark Prior. He sleeps with the fish.

Ummmm... okayyy. I see Silent Towel is taking Cub fanaticism to the next level. He's moved on from the "I-live-for-this" level to the psychotic-sociopath level.

At this point I read the news on Prior and sort of shrugged, but never did have the vehement hatred that Silent Towel has for him. I guess he's just more of a fan than I am.

I second Rynox @ #48. I had been thinking that the time I spend on my Cubs habit at TCR showed a lack of balance in my life. Now, I suddenly feel well-adjusted.

We've been over this a few times before. Mark Prior still has good mechanics. This spring, his arm angle was slightly lower than it has been in the past, which is part of the reason I thought (and I wasn't the only one) that he was hiding an injury.

Mechanics are not and have not been the reason for his injuries.

It is something I kind of feared from Prior this off-season. Sure he may seem perfectly fine in the off-season do all his little training drills and announce himself healthy but no one knows what will happen when he is expected to go out every day and pitch. Whether in games or in between starts.

You go back and look at the articles at the end of the season last year about Prior's shoulder and it wasn't particularly encouraging news. The way the docs were talking it was a 50/50 chance between recovery and full out surgery. There wasn't any straight, "He just needs rest, and he will be fine." It just sounded awfully familiar to Wade Millers attempt to rehab his shoulder over surgery and then finding out, ummmm yeah your gonna need surgery buddy.

Miller basically wasted a year+ on his career doing that. I didn't really care about Miller's decision because he wasn't on my team then. But if that is the case with Prior, it makes me upset because he could have had surgery months ago and been long onto the road to recovery this season.

Here's an update down on the farm after tonight's games:

Pie - leading the Iowa Cubs .455/.500/.636
Veal - walks 7 in 4 innings, 3 K's, 2 H's; ERA up to 9.39 in 2 starts at AA Tennessee
Colvin - hits his first dinger for Daytona; BA at .429
Samardzija - goes 5 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 2 K, 2 BB; ERA at 2.70 after 2 starts at Daytona.

Who's Mark Prior?

How's Eric Patterson looking anyway?

I've got E-Pat at the following line:

280/320/333

7/25 1 2B 2RBI 2BB 3K 2/3 SB

Interesting blurb here about Prior's mechanics, including a (somewhat tedious) frame-by-frame analysis of his delivery. Note, the frames go without comments up until about #17.

We should spell Mark Prior “J-o-e M-a-u-e-r”,

Just for the record, the Cubs never had a chance to draft Joe Mauer. The Twins drafted him immediately before the Cubs took Prior with the number 2 pick.

Yes, "Everyone" though Prior was the more talented player, but even if the Cubs could have drafted Mauer, its unlikely he would have signed with anyone other than his Hometown Twins, since he had a football scholorship waiting for him.

Of course giving him Samardja money might have changed that.

Now the Tejada thing... yeah, a time machine would be nice there even without Bedard...

Prior's not the only one who may be visiting a surgeon.

Looks like Wood may be making a trip to the Queen City to see Kremchek again.

http://www.suntimes.com/sports/baseball/cubs/...

Phil,
How much potential do you see in the young pitcher Robert Hernandez?

If they both go under the knife is there a discount from the surgeon?

Can we put a moratorium on the puns on Prior's name? They're more tired than his injuries.

hagsag — April 13, 2007 @ 6:38 am
Phil,
How much potential do you see in the young pitcher Robert Hernandez?

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

HAGSAG: Hernandez looked good when I saw him in Minor League Camp last month and I suspect the main reason he didn't make the Peoria roster is because of his age (he just turned 18 last October). It certainly wasn't because he wasn't throwing the ball well, that's for sure.

Besides a solid fastball and breaking ball, he has outstanding command and poise (maturity) for a kid his age, too. That's what makes him stand out from the other young Cubs pitchers at EXST.

At what point does keeping Wood and Prior around make sense? You almost have to think the P.R. department has been begging Hendry to keep Wood and Prior around just so they have something for the local reporters to write about all the time.

I say neither of them, for reasons of high expectations or poor medical staff or whatever, is ever going to be of use in a Cubs uniform. Let's trade (or cut) them both, be done with this whole silly dog-and-pony show, and move the bleep on.

I'm getting sick of this crap and it's not worth dealing with.

Phil, How sure are we that Robert Hernandez is really only 18?

aaronb — April 13, 2007 @ 8:36 am
Phil, How sure are we that Robert Hernandez is really only 18?

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

AARON B: Heck, I'm not even sure how old I am!

Uh, so pardon my ignorance here, but how is Mark Prior's injury Michael Barrett's fault? Did Michael give him a playful lovetap in the locker room or something?

touche

George Altman — April 12, 2007 @ 10:47 pm
Samardzija - goes 5 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 2 K, 2 BB;

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

GEORGE A: And a 10/2 GB/FB.

I know everybody likes to see pitchers rack up the Ks in the minors, but when he's "on," Samardzija pounds the strike zone with a two seamer and gets a lot of broken bats and easy ground balls, and so he can get through an inning with a minimum number of pitches (unlike Prior, Wood, Veal, et al). Unfortunately, infield defense in the minors (especially "A" ball) is sometimes not too good, and that can affect results, even when an error isn't charged.

Prior? Didn't he used to pitch for the Cubs? Mark Prior = a high school girl's feelings

Anyways, I'm trying to think about 2007. Beat the Redlings - Harang 'Em High today!

He's not even there yet and the Des Moines Register is making fun of him

http://desmoinesregister.com/apps/pbcs.dll/ar...

[...] Also, AZ Phil has given us an update of what is going on in Arizona which includes notes on Chris Huseby, Drew Rundle, Cliff Andersen, and Ryan Harvey among others. [...]

Arizona Phil:

I know everybody likes to see pitchers rack up the Ks in the minors, but when he’s “on,” Samardzija pounds the strike zone with a two seamer and gets a lot of broken bats and easy ground balls, and so he can get through an inning with a minimum number of pitches (unlike Prior, Wood, Veal, et al).

I'm trying to remember his delivery from ST, but I thought he was pretty much overhand. My guess is first thing Rothschild will do when he gets his hands on him will be to bring his armslot down to more of a 3/4 or even 2/3 delivery. It would 1. slow the 2-seamer down a tad and give it more of a "sink" feel, and 2. keep the pitch on more of a plane where it will be less likely he'll hang it up in the zone.

If they are comparing Danks to Santana, then I think it's completely fair to compare Samardzija to Webb. =)

With the news of Mark Prior's latest injury, the Cubs blogosphere has become a cesspool of hatred and invective. Example: "[Prior's] major league future was already long over. The bastard has stolen money from the Cubs for four years. Prior is the most reprehensible pile of shit that has ever worn a Cub uniform in my 30 plus years of passionately following this ballclub." Hyperbole or no, I sense there is a grain of sincerity here. Over at Desipio (yeah, I know), it's more of the same. "He's a pussy" is the message. There is a notion that he has somehow invidiously fooled the Cubs into paying him for being injured; that he is content, almost glad to be injured; that he doesn't care about the team or his career.

Doesn't this make you ashamed to be a Cubs fan? I'm ashamed for all of us. Yes, I'm frustrated. I love Mark Prior--I still have the ticket stub from his first game. He struck out 10 Pirates. It was a good day. I think this reaction is really more of an expression of the collective frustration we all feel over the entire Cubs organization. Players get injured (Fidrych), players don't pan out (Patterson), players flame out (Gooden). I fear this injury signals the end of Prior's career. I'm upset, but not at Prior; I'm commiserating with him. I still hold out hope that he can be a good pitcher.

In sports we have a tendency to assign value judgments to results: winners "wanted it more", the notion of "clutch" players, etc. Prior's not a bad person for being injured. Perhaps we should really look at why we react to this news the way we do.

Maybe I take this team too seriously, but for better or worse they are a part of my life. I don't see that changing any time soon.

cwtp:

He’s not even there yet and the Des Moines Register is making fun of him

It might have been mean, but it sure was funny!

*Let’s trade (or cut) them both, be done with this whole silly dog-and-pony show, and move the bleep on.*

Yeah, I heard that the Marlins would give up Willis and Cabrera for these two diamonds in the dustbin.

/typical PS2 GM.

Finally some reason. Well put, Rishi.

Prior is going to see Dr. Lewis Yocum for an evaluation:
Lewis A. Yocum, M.D.

Specializing in sports medicine, shoulder, elbow and knees

Medical School:
University of Illinois, Chicago, IL
Internship:
Surgery Internship, McGaw Medical Center Northwestern University; Chicago, Illinois
Fellowship:
Fellowship, Sports Medicine, Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic; Inglewood, California
Residency:
Residency, Northwestern University, Chicago, Illinois
Faculty Appointments:
Clinical Assistant Professor, University of Southern California School of Medicine; Los Angeles, California
University of California, Irvine - Associate Clinical Professor
Professional Background:
Board of Trustees, Centinela Hospital Medical Center
Assistant Medical Director, Professional Golf Association 1997-2001
Panel Reviewer, American Journal of Sports Medicine
Team Physician:
Anaheim Angels Professional Baseball Team
Orthopaedic Consultant:
Numerous Dance Companies
Board Certification:
Diplomate, National Board of Medical Examiners
Diplomate, American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery
Fellow, American College of Surgeons
Fellow, American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
Publications:
Authored numerous publications and books; facilitator for over 100 lectures.

Rishi, it doesn't make any sense to me either. Prior has just as much of a legitimate injury record as Wood -- hell, he has more non self-inflicted injuries than Wood -- and yet Prior is labeled a "pussy" while Wood is some kind of tragic hero.

This latest news makes me seriously suspect that we've seen the last of Prior as a Cub at the MLB level, but I don't blame him for having crappy genetics. I hope he can get himself straightened out and have a good career, even if it isn't with the Cubs.

Well said Rishi. That is a good example of someone who thinks before he speaks.

Despite his millions, I guarantee Mark Prior feels worse about his injuries than we do. Just a few years ago this guy was being called a future HoFer. Now, he's a has-been.

Imagine you had one career you were passionate about your whole life, you were hailed as the greatest young doctor/accountant/lawyer/whatever in the world, and then by 25 it was completely ripped away from you. Yeah, he's got some money to soften the blow, but everytime he feels a twinge in his shoulder it's got to be devastating.

" I’m upset, but not at Prior; I’m commiserating with him. I still hold out hope that he can be a good pitcher."

Exactly. Well said. The vitriol over this is nauseating.

LINEUP?

Anyone get a lineup for today? I'm assuming there is a game?

For someone who has hardly pitched in two years, Prior sure gets a lot of attention here.

"For someone who has hardly pitched in two years, Prior sure gets a lot of attention here."

Two days without baseball will do that.

More bad news....Aramis is out for today's game(swollen wrist) and might have to see a specialist...sounds like he could be out for the weekend. Supposedly he initially injured the wrist in spring training. DeRosa also out with back spasms(Piniella says "it locked up"). Theriot is in for Aramis and Cedeno for DeRosa.

Soriano
Theriot 3B
Jacque
D.Lee
Barrett
Floyd
Cedeno 2B
Izturis
Z

vs Harang........gehhh

WILD CARD...

I just checked - the team is only 2 1/2 games out of the Wild Card lead.

Cedeno 2B
Izturis SS
?????????????
O. M... F. G......!!!

Soriano
Theriot 3B
Jacque
D.Lee
Barrett
Floyd
Cedeno 2B
Izturis
Z

vs Harang……..gehhh
---------------------------------------------------

When is Bears' minicamp?

So I guess Lou is saving ARam, Murton, and DeRosa for game 2 of the double header?

lol, welcome to the Cub's, Lou. =)

Bogey--do you have a source on that?

Post 2007 FA class continues to dry up....Jake Westbrook is about to sign a 3 year extention with the Tribe according to mlbradio.

My biggest problem with Prior is the lack of concrete medical diagnosis to back up his injuries. The lack of specifics on his previous two injuries irks me to no end. Either they have never said exactly what was wrong with him or no one has been able to find out what is exactly wrong with him. Too much doubt makes me cynical and that applies to just about everything.

So I guess Lou is saving ARam, Murton, and DeRosa for game 2 of the double header?

Bleeding Blue... did you even read comment 83 from B ogey, where it said that A-Ram and DeRosa were hurt?

Nope, actually I didn't

FWIW, I'd scrolled right by Bogey's comment and only caught Vegas Brian's post 86.

Bogey:

More bad news….Aramis is out for today’s game(swollen wrist) and might have to see a specialist…

I wonder if it has anything to do with that crazy swing he took and fell? I remember he was trying to protect the plate and guard against the fantastical and moving strikezone of Hoye. Send that ump back to the minors!

According to radio reports the wrist has been bothering ARam since spring training. Today is the first day it swelled up.

His injury is a week early for the Annual Cub Superstar Season Ending Injury.

3 K's vs Harang the last game gets Murton a seat on the bench and he'll probably sit again tomorrow since Arroyo is so tough on righties.

As for anyone holding out for next year's FA class, just pray Hendry/McDonough can talk Trib into signing Z and Barrett before the sale is final. Because once the bids start coming in for the Cubs and the process really begins, the checkbook will get locked up next year. Right now it sounds like the Trib wants to make a decision in November/December right during prime FA time. There's no way there going to let Hendry do anything during that time and by the time the takeover is all settled, it could well be March/April.

Whatever we end up looking like at the end of 2007, will be the 2008 Cubs with a few rookies and cheap vets sprinkled vying for jobs. The only good news is that I really think Trib Co. wants to go out a winner and be known as the ones who brought a championship to the Northside. I think if we're in it in July, they'll let Hendry go after some possible big names at the trade deadline.

"I think if we’re in it in July, they’ll let Hendry go after some possible big names at the trade deadline."

That's just what I'm afraid of. Pie and Gallagher for [let Beinfest or Ken Williams fill in the blank].

|I think if we’re in it in July, they’ll let Hendry go after some possible big names at the trade deadline.|

And with his job on the line coming off the awful '06 and heading into new ownership it is going to be gut the farm system time.

Just in case you, personally, haven't questioned the sanity of Rosenthal, here he is being daft:

FSN baseball insider Ken Rosenthal, appearing as a guest on FSN's "Best Damn Sports Show Period," on where Yanks star 3B Alex Rodriguez ends up if he opts out of his deal after 2007: “Here’s my absolute long shot. If they get a new ballpark, the Florida Marlins.”

Click here for the full story.

Maybe, Ken. Maybe.

Ken Williams?

And with his job on the line coming off the awful ‘06 and heading into new ownership it is going to be gut the farm system time.

Possible, Hendry hasn't really been willing to do that yet, but who knows what the orders from above will be....

ARod to the Cubs in July?

Already talked about this with a few friends on the way to Milwaukee last weekend. If the Cubs are even remotely in it in July, Hendry will trade Pie for a few months of Ichiro or possibly Andruw Jones if he can. Dude's goal is now just to save his job from year to year, until he can't anymore.

I don't think Pie is going anywhere for a rental. Colvin and Smardjza are probably safe too.

Veal, Gallagher, Fox, Moore, Patterson keep those bags packed.

what Real Neal said about the prospects. Colvin might be fair game but I do really think he's all that hot of a prospect right now...

And A-rod's not coming here.

He has a no-trade clause and if he waives it, he's going to want to do it for a contract extension, an extension the Trib will doubtfully want to get involved in at this point. And the Yanks aren't going to trade A-rod in the middle of a pennant race.

"I wonder if it has anything to do with that crazy swing he took and fell? "

I seem to remember a hard slide he took on a hustle play in ST. He was rubbing his wrist or arm.

But, I'm sure we'll find out more. Actually, I KNOW we'll find out more.

At least he was hustling. Fantastic. =(

I'm with Rishi [see #72] - what's the weather in Chicago today?

I am with ST.

I am making up the letter bomb now. Anyone have the address of the Hotel 6 Des Moines?

So - to get this right, Prior, with very few MLB innings pitched in two years has "shoulder problems". Mark DeRosa, who signed a nice deal, and hasn't played but 8 games for the club, "has a bad back" on the day we really need him to play 3b on a day when one of our super-stars is out with a "swolen wrist".

The 25th man, Cedeno, who had a horrenous year when playing 2nd in '06, is playing the forementioned's usual position - because the former Gold Glove SS is anchored in after making three errors in the same game, one game ago.

Finally, our utility guy, who is still figuring it out, is playing the hot corner when he sometimes has a challenge getting the ball from the SS position - AND he is 0-8 with the bat.

Is THIS NORMAL?

What have we done to the baseball gods that they have pissed on us so much???

Ugh...that is: “swollen wrist” and "horrendous".

Fumble fingers...

Robr:
"For someone who has hardly pitched in two years, Prior sure gets a lot of attention here."

Exactly, that was why it made no sense to bring back Prior or Wood this year. Even though people "say" they aren't counting on them, deep down I think most people are.

yeah Piniella said Aramis injured the wrist on that slide in question in spring training...I'm assuming he reinjured it taking a hack at some point in the last Astros game.

Manny,

There's a difference between counting on and hoping for.

Tickets4U is selling tickets to the 2005 World Series in the Sponsors area. It's unclear whether it is BYOTM or they offer one.

Where's the link to the Cubs Minor League blog?

Real Neal:
"There’s a difference between counting on and hoping for."

Fair enough, but Cubs fans don't need either. Cut bait with both of them, like they should of this past offseason. Oh yeah, FIRE HENDRY!!!

Like it or not, healthy Prior and Wood, although in much diminished roles, were key to this being a successful season. Now all bets are off for the playoffs, same as ever.

As for this team, you can thank Jim Hendry for it, all of it, including the ever filled infirmary. Hendry owns this mess, from the vast vacuum we call the Cubs minor league system (which he likes to point out was his building project) to the expensive collection of unmatched socks he calls the Chicago Cubs.

BOGEY: "yeah Piniella said Aramis injured the wrist on that slide in question in spring training…"

Oh - did he mention this in the pregame today?

Indeed, that slide kind of stuck in the cobwebs b/c at the time I was thinking two thoughts: 1. "Wow! I haven't seen him hustle like this in a long time! 2. Whoa. I hope this doesn't turn into an injury.

A Rod, a cub????

Can you imagine all the right handed power bats in our lineup. its absolutely absurd.

Hendry needs to be fired before something REALLY stupid comes about.

We should do what the Marlins did a few years back: Trade everyone for prospects.

Where’s the link to the Cubs Minor League blog?

They haven't really linked our sites yet, but it's pretty easy:

http://mvn.com/milb-cubs

same as our URL with an added 'i'

Since it's smallball season, as even Lou admits, sitting Aramis for a couple of days so Theriot can bat second and jumpstart the offense is not so bad.

Of course, DeRosa going down at the same time was a bit much. Maybe Cedeno will recall that it was only a few weeks ago that he was hitting well.

its smallball season? hope lou has a permit for that...

Re Rob's point about Z's and Barrett's free agency:

Those situations are very different, in that the Cubs know they want Z for five years. I'm a Barrett fan, but they can't be signing a thirty-something catcher with average or below-average defense for a bunch of years.

If you're a Brave and you're 31, they won't give you a long-term contract even if you're Andruw Jones.

Z has to sign a contract in the next few weeks, and the Cubs know it. Imagine being Z right now. Every time you go to the mound (or cross a street or get behind the wheel of a car), you risk losing fifty million dollars.

I don't know if benching the guy who's 5th in the majors in hitting to jumpstart the offense is such a hot plan.

Jesus Christ, what a shitty lineup.

Sun-Times said yesterday that Wood was planning on visiting Kremchek in Cincy, but the AP says he has already visited the Mets doctor.

Just tendinitis apparently... he's already back in 'Zona.

http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/news?slug=ap-cubs...

please skip, sorry

Ouch - the really concerning thing about DeRosa and A-Ram is that this is coming after 2 off days, which should have given them time to recover.

Looks like we may need to pitch a shutout today.

Those situations are very different, in that the Cubs know they want Z for five years. I’m a Barrett fan, but they can’t be signing a thirty-something catcher with average or below-average defense for a bunch of years.

Yeah, they're different, Z helps pack the seats when he starts, Barrett is replaceable. Problem is that if the Hendry's hands are tied like I expect them to be, our catchers next year will be Fox, Blanco or Soto. Ugly, uglier and ugliest.

Hey guys... read the above comments. A-Ram was not benched, he is hurt.

new post up by the way

*We should do what the Marlins did a few years back: Trade everyone for prospects. *

Trade *who* exactly? Remember, this is not a team loaded with talent that just won a WS, like both of the aforementioned dismantled Marlins teams.

Besides Lee, who would you trade? Not Soriano with his contract, not A-Ram with his contract issues. Who would you get for Barrett? I can't think of anyone else who would merit receiving blue chips in return, sorry.

"I don’t know if benching the guy who’s 5th in the majors in hitting to jumpstart the offense is such a hot plan."

It is good to read all the posts in a thread b/f looking like the class dunce.

Started w/post #83 @ 10:15 a.m.

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