An Embarrasment of Riches…

...not in the "we have too much of a good thing kind of way", but more of the "wow this is embarrassing with how much this roster cost the Cubs." And as Mark DeRosa stated yesterday, "There's no good reason for this to be going on." A team built to hit home runs is currently 9th in the NL in runs scored because well, they're 9th in the NL in home runs hit (among some other reasons). Derrek Lee is on pace to hit 14 home runs this year as is Alfonso Soriano. Cliff Floyd won't even hit double digits at this point (8), and Jacque Jones and Matt Murton are in Juan Pierre territory at the moment. I'd love to believe that better times are to come, we still have the best run differential in the Central at +11 and the likelihood of all those players setting what would be essentially career lows for home runs in one season (when you consider playing time) is rather unlikely. This being the Cubs though, the unlikely and improbable in their most negative connotations has become standard operating procedure, so the best I could muster up is some sabermetric optimism after the jump. The Hardball Times posts batted ball type info for each player and one of those numbers is HR/F or Home Runs per Flyball. Average is usually 10% and as you can see, better times should be coming, you know, if this wasn't the Cubs: Derrek Lee: 7.9% Alfonso Soriano: 6.9% Matt Murton: 3.4% Jacque Jones: 3.4% Cliff Floyd: 7.0% Two of the more disappointing seasons in terms of offense for the Cubs have been Michael Barrett and Jacque Jones. Another sabermetric tenet is that a player is usually around .300 with their BABIP (Batting Average on Balls in Play). There are some other factors that go into that and players can have down years and career years and they can also just have a few bad months. Barrett right now stands at .258 with BABIP and has never had one lower than .290 as a Cub. Jones on the other hand is at .278 with his BABIP, down significantly from the .321 he put up last year but right in line with the .283 and .282 he put up in his last two years in Minnesota. If he is to turn it around, he's going to have rediscover his power stroke. That's about all the optimism I can muster though until we actually start winning...um...IF we actually start winning.
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Comments

I disagree, Mr. DeRosa. There's plenty of good reasons for this to be going on.

But probably first and foremost - when this team has a chance to win, it turns and runs the other way.

More HRs might help - or just lead to more 9-8 losses instead of 9-0.

I wish we were in another division so I could stop watching.

At this point we have more upside than down. I hope

Oh, the Cubs are upside-down all right....
(rimshot)

Piniella doesn't seem to like playing Henry Blanco. (Gee, a 35-year-old catcher with a lifetime 224/289/365--what's not to like?) The result is that Barrett is working overtime. It looks like Blanco has only started eleven or twelve games out of 51. Last year he started almost half the games, but then Barrett was out the whole month of September, wasn't he? But even the year before, Blanco started a third of the games.

So Barrett is working more games and his numbers are bound to suffer.

The Cubs could bring up Koyie Hill--if they had a few extra roster spots.

Is it all-star break yet? That's when some of these issues can start to get resolved. Meanwhile, let's hope they can keep Piniella away from Hendry's throat and Rothchild's throat.

Get rid of the vets. If we're gonna suck, let's get Pie back and let Murton play. Let the vets sit, we're paying them reguardless. This is unwatchable. I thought most players preferred hitting over fielding. I will be at the game Saturday and at this point, I'm only looking forward to maybe having Bobby Cox tie the record. Gad!

how this team only has 44 HR is just weird...team should have another 10-20, easy....ON PAPER *sigh*

jones, soriano, dlee having 9 HRs combined is just...there isnt a word for it.

aram/barrett are pulling their power load (too bad barrett isnt hitting more consistantly aside from the power)...derosa is going above/beyond though his homer power has been dead for weeks it seems...

the pen...my god...even when they're pitching in games the cubs have already let out of their reach theyre STILL fumbling around out there.

this team is a lot better with even a shred of a dependable pen even with the power outtage by the guys who should be hitting homers the past 2 months.

"Is it all-star break yet? That’s when some of these issues can start to get resolved. Meanwhile, let’s hope they can keep Piniella away from Hendry’s throat and Rothchild’s throat. "

V-Phil- If sweet Lou goes for their throats you would be hard pressed to find 1 reliable witness.

Rob G.:
Derrek Lee is on pace to hit 14 home runs this year as is Alfonso Soriano. Cliff Floyd won’t even hit double digits at this point (8), and Jacque Jones and Matt Murton are in Juan Pierre territory at the moment.

Unbelievable.

Still, I have to say it all starts with swinging at strikes and not swinging at balls. As simple as that sounds, I don't think the Cub's do enough of that.

dlee/soriano's power should show up...they got the stroke and they seem to be healthy.

jones, however, isnt looking good...he's hit some long/deep outs, but he's hitting a lot of crap without any authority with regularity.

the only Cub note of interest from Stark's latest...

Speaking of home run droughts, Alfonso Soriano had an 18-game homerless drought through the Cubs' game with Florida on Wednesday. "He's obviously putting a lot of pressure on himself," one scout said. "His frustration is mounting. He's expanding the strike zone. And he's not having real good swings on breaking balls. He's always been a high-strikeout guy. But when he's got four homers and 12 RBIs, those strikeouts get a little more imposing."

btw... nice to have the "Road to Wrigley" links in the post.

Last night was stunning -- wind blowing out to LF pretty hard, Marlins whack 3 HRs (at least one was wind-aided), and I don't think the Cubs even got one near the warning track.

Why does Hendry continue to load up on medicore, middle-aged veterans (i.e. Cliff, Derosa and Jacque)? Because he caught lightning in a bottle one year with Grudz, Karros and Randall Simon, and thought he had a repeatable model. Nope.

Hopefully, the new GM (and manager) will have a plan for player development -- i.e. NOT bringing up Pie to be a defensive replacement twice a week, NOT suddely telling the world that Guzman is your new closer, etc. Until then, we get "old school" brand name managers who are afraid to play kids becasue they need to win now. Well, that hasn't worked for, oh, maybe 98 years.

The Marlins will win another WS before the Cubs do.

DEALING DAMON? Should the Yankees fall deeper into the hole they've created for themselves this season, dealing off players would certainly be an option. Many of their stars have no-trade clauses, but Johnny Damon's contract allows the Yankees to deal him to 12 teams, a list selected by Damon himself.

[snip]

Damon, who is in the second year of his four-year, $52 million contract, said his hope is to finish his contract in the Bronx. "It's a good team and a great place to eventually win," said Damon, who reached the 2,000-hit plateau last night, homering in his first at-bat and singling in his second trip to the plate to record the milestone.

Click here for the full story.

Two questions...

1. If you are the Cub's, do you make the trade?
2. If you are the Yanks, do you make the trade?

I say 1. Yes, and 2. Maybe.

oh c'mon...j.jones...RF

time machine.

pick your RF'r...look at what stl/kc/pitt picked up and how much it cost them. cubs didnt have a RF'r in the system worth a damn that was close/near.

cliff floyd cost a whole lotta nothing and his possible money would do what...if you dont sign derosa/floyd you could get part of the way toward signing lugo.

team didnt need floyd, he's just a perk. only thing the team really needed (aside from zito/schmidt depending on how people felt about them) was a SS. team has 5m worth of izturis/theriot/cedeno to play with there. not spectacular, but honestly, lugo wouldnt have people screaming about how good of a deal he is right now.

Trade Zambrano for Damon, I mean. Stupid spam filter.

Until then, we get “old school” brand name managers who are afraid to play kids becasue they need to win now.

Since when has Lou been afraid to play "kids." Last I looked The Riot is starting almost every day, and Guzman, Marmol, and Marshall are getting sign

Still, I have to say it all starts with swinging at strikes and not swinging at balls. As simple as that sounds, I don’t think the Cub’s do enough of that.

Spot on, Ryno. I think we're chasing some tough pitches to hit early in the count. We're either not hitting them or rolling them over.

Seems like Lee, Ramirez, and Clifford then can't catch up to 2 strike fastballs.

Hmmm... that is a hell of a lot of money for an aging center fielder who is somewhat reliant on speed.

1) NOOO!!!!!

2) YESSSS!!!!!

I don't get this whole, "The Cubs don't play young players". It's a fucking FARCE! We don't play young players that aren't that good. Boners abound for Matt Murton and Ryan Theriot but these guys are not that good. You act like we are benching the future Jason Bay and Derek Jeter in favor of Cliff Floyd and Cesar Izturis. WE'RE NOT! The Chicago Cubs have and obligation to all of baseball and all of their fans to put on the field a team that has the best chance of winning. That is how baseball is played. That is how all sports are played. You don't trot out 9 minor leaguers just to get them experience. They do that in Miami and Tampa Bay because they are joke franchises.

It doesn't matter what you're record is, the job is to win games. NOT to get young players experience. Get that straight!

Trade Damon for...

JJones; Nolasco, Mitre and Pinto...and call it a "do-over".

and it would require a throwing contest before that trade, weakest throwing arm wins

You guys do realize Z is under Cub control for only 5 more months, right? He has, let's say 21 more starts as a Cub before coming a free agent. Let's say he really turns it on and goes 12-5 in that period.

Also consider the Cub's don't have a bonafide CFer. Also, the Cubs need another legit left-handed bat in the lineup.

I don't see what Damon would add to this club other than giving us yet another leftfielder that would be playing out of position.

The Chad has spoken....

what i really need today is a lesson on what sabermetrics is founded on and it's basic principles.

I'll pass on a Damon trade....

How about Sammy Sosa? I bet he's available.

A shortstop would be nice too, good luck though.

Rynox,

Zambrano is too high price to pay for Johnny Damon. I think we would do better in finding a trading partner willing to extend him on his terms and get a whole lot more. The trade that makes too much sense is Z for ARod. Either they both sign and trade or just trade straight up.

If I had a magic deal making wand, I'd be sendin Jones and Izturis off for decent relief help, then handing CF to Pie and SS to Theriot. Bring up Cedeno or someone else with a decent glove to act as your IF sub, and hope the big boys find their power again.

Chad, the point is. You know that Cesar Izturis and Cliff Floyd suck. There is years of statistical track record that says as much. If you are out of the race. Play the kids and MAYBE they turn into something. You mention Jason Bay in your example. He got traded 2 times by GM's who thought he didnt have enough power. Once he got a chance to play. He turned into one of the best players in the NL. It is gross mismanagement to NOT see what you have in the way of kids if your not winning.

They do that in Miami and Tampa Bay because they are joke franchises.

Yea... I would hate to be fan of the kind of "joke franchise" that has already won two world series titles in their short history.

Pie is the Cfer of the future. But this organization has not 1 single SS prospect in the system. If indeed it is over for this team. Barrett or Z need to get shipped out for a Ss prospect. Bullpen prospects show up like dandelions. Cubs havent had a Ss prospect since Shawon Dunston or at least Rey Sanchez. Were talking 20-25 years. Second biggest need is a Catching prospect. Hopefully Weiters changes that in a few weeks.

Rob,

Do you disagree with my overall assessment of sports? That the point is to always do your best to win? And anything less is cheating the sport?

Let me give you an example from a dream world where the Cubs are competing for first place:

Late August and the Cubs trail the Brewers by 1 game going into a weekend series against the Astros who play a normal lineup. The Brewers go to Cinnci where they decide to sit Jr. and Dunn for those games to give a couple of promising rookies a chance to get some seasoning. Do you think that is right? Or do you think that the Reds owe it to us to put out there best team even if they are 20 games out?

I think 5 months of Zambrano is being way over-valued by the collective TCR crowd. Even if he turns it on the last 2/3 of the year, I'd still make the trade and take a .500 pitcher in his place. It gives the Cub's a legit LH bat in the lineup and an actual CFer to play there until Pie comes up. When Pie comes up show Jones the door (believe it or not, Jones is very tradable) and move Damon.

This isn't like the Ramirez deal, where even though Ramirez hit the FA market, he still signed with the Cub's. Once Z hits the FA market, he's as good as gone.

Wow...do you know anything about Floyd's career?

Career line: .279/.359/.486

Those "years of statistical track record" say something very different than what you claim they do.

Now if you want to argue that Floyd is washed up, that is a different story. But you cannot argue that there are "years to statistical track record" that says Floyd sucks.

I guess I shouldn't say that. I imagine the Cub's would be in the running for Zambrano. ;-)

doh... i hate it when i forget to close tags correctly.

"Yea… I would hate to be fan of the kind of “joke franchise” that has already won two world series titles in their short history."

You think what the Marlins did in 1997 - 1998 was in the best interest of baseball? You'd be proud of that team who basically went Georgia Fontierre and dismantled a team and turned them into a door mat? You don't think that is a joke?

You’d be proud of that team...

I would be proud of a team that has already won two world series. You said it yourself - the goal is to win, right?

The Marlins have a lot more to be proud about than the Cubs do over the last 99 years.

Chad-

How has the Cubs approach of "putting the team on the field that has the best chance of winning" (i.e. the "play Neifi" strategy) worked over the past 2+ years, versus, say, the Twins, Indians, Tigers, Marlins, etc.? Hey,if it ain't broke, don't fix it! You've got me there.

The Floyd signign has directly impacted Murton -- how you don't see this is baffling. How will we ever know what Murton can do? He has hit .300 at every level, every year. Very few young players hit well playing part time. The most likely scenario for him is to get traded and become a consistent .300/.350 guy somewhere else. Lord knows we don't need any more of those on this team.

I was just amused by your "Get it straight!", Chad.

if we could just get an end o' subject by someone. :)

A team built to hit home runs is currently 9th in the NL in runs scored because well, they’re 9th in the NL in home runs hit (among some other reasons). Derrek Lee is on pace to hit 14 home runs this year as is Alfonso Soriano. Cliff Floyd won’t even hit double digits at this point (8), and Jacque Jones and Matt Murton are in Juan Pierre territory at the moment.

Wow. On May 9 you were sure that the low HR output by D Lee and the usual suspects wasn't hurting us at all..... I'm still pulling arrows out of my butt.

Isn't the goal ultimately to get younger and cheaper?? Why trade Zambrano to add an older player with a larger contract?? Why not try to deal Zambrano for a guy like Saltalamaccia? He'd fill a need now and in the future.

Isn’t the goal ultimately to get younger and cheaper??

Not necessarily - the goal is to improve your team so that you have a better chance of winning this year and in the future.

"How will we ever know what Murton can do? He has hit .300 at every level, every year."

Who cares? A guy who hits .310 with 15 home runs is not impressive. Matt Murton is not Jason Bay. Matt Murton is not a special player. You think the Cubs are just too stupid to realize that? You think other GMs are knocking down our door trying to trade for him? NO!

In the mind of the manager at the time (for better or worse) playing Neifi was his best way of trying to win the game. Call it misguided, call it wrong. It doesn't matter. Baker put him out there cause he thought it would make for the best lineup he could. I agreed with him. At that time, that's all he had. He didn't bench Nomar for Neifi. He benched Ronnie Cedeno for Neifi.

The problem is not with the players the get put into the starting lineup, it's the players on the entire roster.

You make a good point Chad.
It is important to try to win in sports, and to field the best team possible.

Izturis:
.258/.319/.315, 5RBI's 89 assists, 18 DP's in 303 innings @ SS, 3.91 RF
Theriot:
.274/.337/.350, 18 RBI's, 26 assists,
6 DP's in 102 innings at SS, 3.96 RF.
How much better is Izturis?

Cliff Floyd:
.298/.360/..394, 2 HR, 20 RBI's
Matt Murton:
.276/.350/.371, 1HR, 8 RBI's
Neither of these guys should be in Right Field. Floyd is having a better season at the dish so far.

It's not like the Cubs would be sitting Albert Pujols to play Scott Spiezio.

"Isn’t the goal ultimately to get younger and cheaper??"

No. The goal is to win championships and getting younger and cheaper gets you to the Devil Rays or Royals.

ah yes, welcome to the world of cwtp....

So you weren't specifically talking about Derrek Lee, you were talking about the whole team now. Very interesting.

Because my point today isn't just about Derrek Lee because 6 more homers by him right now and well it would still be a problem. I'm talking about a team-wide slump. What are you talking about?

"The goal is to win championships"

Maybe you guys ought to accept that this team just isn't good enough to do that with the way it's constructed right now.

"It’s not like the Cubs would be sitting Albert Pujols to play Scott Spiezio."

The problem is that too many people feel that Matt Murton is the next Pujols and that Ryan Theriot is the next Derek Jeter.

In simpler terms,
IzturisMurton
At least right now.
Floyd is a Cub favorite...an aging slugger with injury issues. He had a good 2005, with a shaky 2003,2004,2006...I f he would be 100%, and get 550 AB's like in 2005, then that is a good signing.
Otherwise, not so much.

This is a team with a lot of dormant power, i.e. Soriano, Lee, Jones, Barrett....with few guys who GET ON BASE ahead of them.
Neither player is a very good fit right now.

The problem is that too many people feel that Matt Murton is the next Pujols and that Ryan Theriot is the next Derek Jeter.

Chad... if there are "too many" of these people, you shouldn't have a problem naming one.

So go for it... name one person who thinks that Murton is the next Pujols and Theriot is the next Jeter.

Really?

I like Theriot better than Izturis, and I like Murton better than Floyd.
If I could significantly upgrade at SS, Theriot is on the bench. Izturis is not that upgrade.

If Lou decides to play Floyd most of the time over Murton, ok I guess, but it isn't like Floyd is tearing the cover off of the ball, or that he could be any sort of long-term solution.

What dave said. I'm "pro Murton," and I don't think he'll be a superstar or particularly special. I think he has the ability to be a solidly above average offensive player with some skills this lineup needs (patience, ability to get on base).

i think the bigger problem is a fan gets presented with 2 flavors of crap. one person will value aspects of the crap more than others, such as "oh, that crap has more corn in it!"...umm...i mean such as "oh, that player will walk 20 more times a year!"

another person might not care about the 20 extra walks because of how horrible he throws in a postition where throwing is important.

blah blah blah...

anyway...at some point with these minor role players, especially for the bench types, its time to focus less on these "what ifs" and just realize a debate of which flavor of crap is more easily swallowed is still a debate over crap.

..at least until floyd gets hurt again...

Look, no one here thinks that Matt Murton is the next Albert Puljos but too many people here think way too much of him. Why? OBP. That is why.

Look, no one here thinks that Matt Murton is the next Albert Puljos

Then why the hell did you say people did?

too many people here think way too much of him. Why? OBP. That is why.

No... it is because they guy has proven that he can hit at every level he has played at. No one thinks he is ever going to be a superstar. But many of us believe that he will be able to be a good to very good player. And so far - he has come pretty close to those expectations when given the opportunity to play.

That, and Murton came on and had a very solid second half last year, slugging .522 and hitting .319 besides his obp of .390 in the second half.
Murton is still a terrible option in Right Field, and I'm not sure why they don't put Soriano in RF, and Floyd/Murton in LF, wherre their defensive shortcomings can be minimized.

Crunch your post #52 is excellent. Vulgar, but excellent. And exactly what I have been trying to say. There was a borrowed phrase we used to use around here, "Crap for crap". It still applies.

hell, i got no problem with a crap vs. crap argument...its just the importance laid on it that's astounding.

izturis vs. theriot...neifi vs. cedeno...holly vs. dubois...

there's no lifesavers in there...just a collection of run of the mill +/- tallents. if any point in a season any of this matters there's bigger issues with the club.

The logic of "always put the team with the best chance of winning on the field" means:

- The Colts should not have played Peyton Manning as a rookie, as he was tossing interceptions by the truckload

- Ditto the Cowboys and Aikman

-The Cubs should never have allowed Maddux to pitch as a rookie

- Mike Schmidt and his .199 rookie average should have been sitting on the bench

So, Chad, an honest question -- how do young players get experience and improve? Your logic says they should never get a chance to play. I am honestley confused by this.

Geez...it's time to change the subject when Crunch brings up the
Holly vs. Dubois again.......sigh.

"It gives the Cub’s a legit LH bat in the lineup and an actual CFer to play there until Pie comes up."
_________________________________________

Or you could trade Z for someone who isn't getting near the end of their usefulness. Who cares what side of the plate they stand at, you could and should trade Zambrano for a younger, cheaper, and better player than a declining Damon.
Damon is also a worse CF'er than Juan Pierre.

maybe we can talk about what AAA prospect is being shafted based on what is known about the player vs. some numbers?

yeah! numbers!!! i learned about them in kindergarden, but if you talk about about them and baseball to some you never went to kindergarden if you choose not to blindly follow what a formula of numbers means to a game where 30% success will barely keep you employeed and 40% will put you in the hall of fame.

its such an exact and easy science...

yeah, we need to argue about playing Lee over Hoffpauir, there's some untapped potential there.

of course the arguments rage over "crap vs crap", cause there's something to argue about.

hell, im down for an ol' fashion macias vs. neifi debate.

i vote for neifi cuz there's less letters to stich on his uniform and yosh is an old man.

Cubs signed a bunch of draft and follows the last few days....

http://cubs.scout.com/2/648012.html

INF Anthony Morel
OF/P Marcus Hatley
RHP Cedric Redmond
RHP Brett Summers
RHP Michael Bartek

http://cubs.scout.com/2/647593.html

the other link, Wilkin not happy about the eliminating of draft and follows fwiw.

This one sounds like a winner:

RHP Michael Bartek of Nicholls State University in Thibodaux, La.

Bartek was 2-11 with a 5.16 ERA in 17 appearances (13 starts) this season.

He should fit right into the Cubs' bullpen...

so how upset is this crew going to be when we pass up on Wieters next week for a high schooler?

show of hands....

(RAISES HAND)

maybe the Drays or Royals will save the organization the embarrassment....

Max Scherzer signs with the Dbacks, big name off the board.

I can't say I know much about any of the guys that the Cubs are supposedly looking at to draft. But from what I can tell (i.e. what I have read from others) with Wieters, there is no reason that cubs should pass on him.

potential buyers/sellers at the deadline

http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20070...

list of potential free agents on the right is the intriguing, especially Mariano Rivera.

word on the street lately is the Cubs don't want to pour money into the draft after the offseason spending spree and Wieters is a Boras baby.

all kinds of buzz that they like Vitters or the pitcher Jarrod Parker right now.

Padres moving former #1 pick Matt Bush to the pitcher's mound....

ROB G: Michael Bartek (Nicholls State) was actually a NDFA 5th year college senior, the second one signed by the Cubs this year (the other one being RHP John Muller out of St. Thomas Aquinas College in New York).

The difference between a Draft+Follow and a NDFA 5th year college senior is that a "Draft+Follow" (and this is the last year for this rule, BTW) is a player selected by a club in the previous June Draft who the club was unable to sign prior to the player returning to school, but where the player is eligible for the subsequent June Draft AND where the player's college team is not still active in post-season play as of one week prior to the draft. I wrote an article here at TCR four weeks ago about the potential Cubs Draft+Follow candidates, and subsequently they have signed four (Rosa, Latham, Redmond, and Summers).

A 5th year college senior is any player who has exercised his 5th year of college eligibility (usually resulting from an injury or transfer sometime earlier in his career) who was not selected in the previous Rule 4 Draft (June Draft). This class of player can be signed up to one week before the next Rule 4 Draft, too. Last year the Cubs signed RHPs Rocky Roquet (Cal Poly) and Matt Maradeo (Kutztown), catcher Blake Lalli (Gardner-Webb), and OF Jeremy Williams (York College) as 5th year college seniors.

Roquet was outstanding as the closer at Peoria and recently received a promotion to Daytona. Lalli is the back-up catcher at Peoria, and Maradeo is at EXST. Williams was placed on the Restricted List after deciding to quit baseball this past ST, and will be eventually transferred to the Voluntary Retired List once he makes it official.

word on the street lately is the Cubs don’t want to pour money into the draft after the offseason spending spree and Wieters is a Boras baby.

Yea... but I don't get it.

Will the money for Wieters actually be that much more? Are not the contracts coming out of the draft somewhat slotted to when they were picked? If they take someone else at #3, they still need to pay them #3 money, right?

MLB doesn't have slotted money (still), that's the NFL. The only rule change was that if you couldn't sign your first round pick, you get an extra pick at the same slot next in next year's draft.

Hopefully the cubs take Wieters regardless. If the team is sold. Our new owner can pay him after the season. Worst case is the cubs pick 3rd next year.

well let's hope, but I've read from 2-3 different sources now that the Cubs are going to be cheap about it this year. Maybe they're just picking up on the same story, who knows?

supposedly he's thrown out 65% of runners this year btw, so I read in that Sickels link that someone provided.

the guy that provided that link was a real jerk. FWIW.

MLB doesn’t have slotted money (still), that’s the NFL.

Yea... I know that, but I would think that the draft picks still tend to get something similar to slotted money. What I mean is that it tends to be in order: #1 gets paid more than #2, #2 more than #3, etc.

But now that I think about it, the Twins took Mauer because they couldn't afford Prior.

Anyone know how much more Prior got than Mauer?

I love the fact that Weiters is hitting better in College than Vitters is in HS. Why wouldnt we go for the HS hitter that is blocked by our best player?

Why wouldnt we go for the HS hitter that is blocked by our best player?

He is not really blocked - typically you don't expect HS players to get to the bigs for at least 3-4 years. You should almost never draft for a major league need (or lack thereof) in the baseball amateur draft.

Except for when you need a C, and there's a good one available........like with this draft.

Except for when you need a C, and there’s a good one available……..like with this draft.

Still not sure you draft a catcher just because you need one.

In the baseball amateur draft, you take the best player available. There are some who don't think Wieters will end up catching in the bigs due to his height (6'5"). I don't really get that, as his defense is supposed to be pretty decent.

yeah not really Dave, plenty of examples of guys in the low 1st round got more money than higher picks. Pawelek comes to mind.

Craig Hansen got a bunch from the RSox too....

I'm a little nervous about Parker. I haven't seen him pitch, but he's finally getting a little pub in the Indy media.

I gather he throws 98, but I have yet to read anything that will tell me anything about a plus second pitch. I would assume he throws a slide piece to go with that 98mph cheese, but I don't know anything about it. If somebody has something, feel free to send me in that direction.

I would personally take Wieters if KC or TB don't take him.

there's just concern that his frame and that much crouching is more damaging to his knees than a 5-10 guy. Not sure the science behind it (paging cubster) but that's the theory.

If it he makes it as a catcher great, if not he's got the arm for 3b or RF. He's walked more than he's struck out this year with decent power, the guy's gonna hit.

well all he has to do is throw 98 and you've got Hendry's attention...

http://www.minorleaguebaseball.com/milb/event...

I think I posted that before but it comes with video.

I agree with you Rob - Wieters seems like the guy.

Does anyone have any idea how much more Wieters would cost than Vitters?

anyway, curve and change neither of them special for Parker. Good command of his fastball though, Roy Oswalt-ish apparently. I'm sure they expect those pitches to develop as he progresses.

I'm sure they'd take Vitters before Parker though.

Teixeria's probably a good comp for Wieters in terms if signing...

Same agent, same school, about the same prospect status. Teix got a $4.5 bonus plus whatever else (don't have time to look it up right now).

I'm guessing it's at least $5-$7 million difference overall between Vitters and Wieters, but that's just a complete guess.

Thanks for the link to that video, Rob. Didn't see one any higher than 94 in there.

Can't say the curve impressed me very much. His change isn't great, but can be developed into a very good pitch, I think.

Mechanics are pretty good for a high schooler. He'll gain more velocity as he gets some work with minor league instructors.

hopefully the next cub starting catcher won't double clutch everytime he throws to a base...

"The logic of “always put the team with the best chance of winning on the field” means:" Im going to post my responses after each point

- The Colts should not have played Peyton Manning as a rookie, as he was tossing interceptions by the truckload Kelly Holcomb was the back up. I think it was safe to say the Manning was giving that piece of shit team the best chance they had at winning. And by piece of shit, I'm talking about coming off a 3 - 13 season.

- Ditto the Cowboys and Aikman

-The Cubs should never have allowed Maddux to pitch as a rookie Does not compute. 5 man rotation. I'm sure Greg Maddux was better than probably 3 or 4 of the other starters. He didn't pitch cause they were just trying him out, he probably earned it by showing he had the goods

- Mike Schmidt and his .199 rookie average should have been sitting on the benchMaybe he should have. Once again, do you really think that these young guys we have will hit 500 home runs and win gold gloves? I don't

So, Chad, an honest question — how do young players get experience and improve? Your logic says they should never get a chance to play. I am honestley confused by this. Yes, you give them time. They need experience. But playing a young player just for the sake of playing young players is wrong. If you think that Ryan Theriot is a possible starting SS next year, work him in. He gets his at-bats. I like the way they have been mixing him in. But Matt Murton is Matt Murton. We know what he is going to provide for us and it's not that great. I personally think that Felix Pie should be starting EVERYDAY on the big club now.

Well Chad-there is one salient point there for sure.
I agree that Pie should be starting everyday on the big club right now.

I'll agree to disagree on Murton. I'd still rather see a guy who is 25, who had a very solid second half of his first full season the year before...I'd rather see that guy playing everyday, rather than an aging, injury-prone slugger who has had 1 good season out of the last 4,(2003-2006), who is not an improvement defensively.

Thanks for listening...just my 2 cents.

GO BRAVES!!!!!!!!! KILL THE CUBS!!!

:) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :)

DANG NO SMILEYS!

:) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :)

Hey Corey, go back to finger painting. This board is for the big kids.

Corey: At our request, TCR's Smileys have been disabled. We don't laugh much around here.

You might want to try the Atlanta Braves MVN site (Chop-n-Change). Their Smileys might still work.

Chad-

We're cool.

I just think there are times when you sacrifice a bit in the present for a better future, such as playing young guys who have to learn MLB pitching or how to read NFL defenses. If Floyd were the Floyd of a few years ago, I'd have no problem with the platoon. But, he's not, and I don't see much upside in having him take ABs away from Murton, who has shown some decent potential in prior years and will likely post number similar or better than Floyd's. He's not the next Willie Mays, but, if he only sees LH pitching this year, the Cubs will enter another off-season not sure of what they've got. Can he develop 20-25HR power? We won't know. Again, if Floyd were performing and helping the team win, they should stay with that. Hopefully, he and the others will start bopping soon.

Go Cubs.

Chad, your opinions were driving me crazy through this whole thread. Then you posted #99. Well done, and I thank you.

- Mike Schmidt and his .199 rookie average should have been sitting on the bench Maybe he should have. Once again, do you really think that these young guys we have will hit 500 home runs and win gold gloves? I don’t

Chad actually said this.

I like the "let's give up" theory. There's no possible way that any player, young or old, will ever perform better than what the Cubs currently trot out there, so what's the point? Very comforting thought. Honestly, why even hire scouts?

Horatio, the quote you posted was only part mine. I typed this:

Maybe he should have. Once again, do you really think that these young guys we have will hit 500 home runs and win gold gloves? I don’t

Those were two separate ideas. Maybe Schmidt was brought up to the majors a year too early but maybe it didn't hurt his development. Maybe that year had no effect on him what so ever. The Phillies were also a terrible team that could afford to have a black hole at third base.

Then my last thought was to say that I've seen Ryan Theriot and Matt Murton play and they ain't no Mike Schmidt.

billybucks

Will Carrol thinks Murton could turn out a lot like Ramirez. Wether i agree with that i dont know, i could see him hitting .300/.370 with 20 homeruns a year.

I think that WIll Carrol has Bill James as his desktop picture. And 20 homeruns is replaceable.

Will Carrol thinks Murton could turn out a lot like Ramirez.

Aramis? Manny? Hanley? Which one?

Bill James has a lot of good ideas, but he is by no means infallible.
20 HR's is certainly replacable Chad. If the Cubs had an OF that will do that, then by all means let's get him out there. Is it Angel Pagan, Matt Murton, or Cliff Floyd? I hope floyd his .290 with 30 HR's and 90-100 RBI's. I just don't think he'll stay healthy enough to do it.
You aren't wrong Chad, when you say that Murton is replacable, but replacing him with Cliff Floyd? The one who hit .244/.324/.407 last year? The one hitting .298/.360/.394 this year?

I'll take the guy who is 8-9 years younger, cheaper, and has something that the Cubs lack. THE ABILITY TO GET ON BASE.
I know that you hate OBP Chad...or that you seem to hate it, but it is important. The Cubs have hitters to drive in runs. Put Murton in the second spot in the lineup, in LF, move Soriano to RF, and put Jones in CF with Pagan against most lefties. (If not Pie)

I’ll take the guy who is 8-9 years younger, cheaper, and has something that the Cubs lack. THE ABILITY TO GET ON BASE.

I agree with the first two... but Floyd has shown this year that he can GET ON BASE just as much as Murton.

Dave-ok...this year so far, yes.
Isn't Floyd supposed to be a slugger? .394 slugging isn't that good is it?
Last season's .324 wasn't that great, and he slugged .407.

He is not better defensively, and if he's not hitting HR's and driving in runs, he isn't an upgrade.
Hopefully, I'll be eating my word by the end of the month.

The Daryl Ward signing was good. Here's the problem:

Catchers

1. Barrett is a lousy catcher and should have been replaced by Soto -- last year!
2. Blanco should be catching the majority of the games.

Infield

1. Izturis doesn't belong on this team.
2. DeRosa is a utility player and doesn't belong on a team that has Theriot on it. They are too much alike.
3. A platoon of Theriot and Fontenot or Patterson should be playing second base.
4. A combination of Cedeno, Fontenot and Theriot should be playing shortstop.

Outfield

1. Floyd and Jones don't belong on this team. They only create a logjam of outfielders.
2. Pie and Pagan should be playing centerfield.
3. Soriano should be playing rightfield.
4. Murton should be playing leftfield.

Misc.

Add LF/RF/1B/C Jake Fox as a PH & Utility player

Note:

Special July Sale

1. Barrett, Jones, Floyd, DeRosa & Izturis should bring decent prospects at various positions to re-stock the minor league system.
2. Eyre & Howry should be unloaded just to improve the team.
3. Zambrano should return very good prospects.

Line-up vs. RHP

1. RF Soriano
2. 2B Fontenot/Patterson/Theriot
3. LF Murton
4. 1B Lee
5. 3B Ramirez
6. CF Pie
7. SS Cedeno/Fontenot/Theriot
8. C Blanco
9. Pitcher

Line-up vs. LHP

1. RF Soriano
2. 2B Theriot
3. LF Murton
4. 1B Lee
5. 3B Ramirez
6. CF Pagan
7. C Blanco/Soto
8. 2B Fontenot
9. Pitcher

This roster may not scare anyone; however, they can't be worse than last year and, may be an improvement over this year's current team.

Isn’t Floyd supposed to be a slugger? .394 slugging isn’t that good is it?

That wasn't your point. You said (or at least implied) that Murton would be able to get on base more than Floyd.

Murton: career OBP: .367
Floyd: career OBP .359

Those are very similar. It basically means that over 500 abs, Murton would get on base about 4 more times than Floyd would over 500 abs. Of course, neither of the two are going to get 500 abs, so the difference is even smaller.

I don't disagree with you that Floyd is no necessarily an upgrade. But don't make things up (like Floyd will reach base more) to prove your point.

Dusty and BillyBucks, Hooo fn Rayyyy!!!!!! You guys get it. Your points are spot on. Sounds like something that AaronB would have said.

The thing is Dave, career numbers between the 2 are a moot point. Floyd is 34 and his career is winding down. Murton is 25 and is just getting started. It's all well and good that Floyd used to be a star. But at this point it matters little more than the fact that Elizabeth Taylor "used" to be the hottest woman on the planet. If Cliff was 25, I would say play him. As it is now. The cubs will still be looking for a corner OFer next year because they arent sure what they have in Murton.

Did I say " Floyd will reach base more?"
When did I say that?

Thank you AaronB....that is the real point.
If the Cubs had Cliff Floyd circa 2005, no one is arguing. but he was not that good in 2006,2004, and had good numbers in a shortened 2003.

"I know that you hate OBP Chad…or that you seem to hate it, but it is important. "

Lets be very clear. I don't hate OBP. I like OBP. It's a great stat. When used in combination with other stats. OBP for OBPs sake is meaningless. What I truly hate is people on this board who think that OBP is the end all be all. That they see a player with very little baseball ability outside of getting on base (I'm talking low slugging, not fast, not a good fielder) and thinking that is the model of a baseball player.

And if you think the Matt Murton should be starting every game over Cliff Floyd, you're probably right. I'm just saying that I am not happy with out choices and I feel we need an upgrade over the both of them, while other people here feel Murton is an adequate player.

Dave

Aramis, he always talks about it on Sportscentral when Murton is brought up

What I hate, Chad, are your poorly reasoned posts.

Once again you’re putting words in other people’s mouths. I don’t think anyone stated that on-base percentage “is the end all be all.” It is, however, the single most important offensive statistic. (Remember, of course, that OPS is two statistics.) This is not my opinion; this is a fact. OBP correlates more closely to runs scored than does slugging percentage, batting average, stolen bases or any other single statistic.

Is it the end-all-be-all? Certainly not. Is more important than the Cubs seem to think it is? Almost certainly. Is it more important that you seem to think it is. Probably, although we can’t really quantify this.

Would I start Eddie Stanky over Ryne Sandberg? Hell no. Would I start Stanky over Juan Samuel? Probably. Would you? I don’t know. My guess is you’d come up with some subjective reason (“Stanky’s not fast”) for benching whichever player you didn’t like, and then you’d bitch and moan that your team didn’t have Rogers Hornsby or Joe Morgan. And yes, I’m putting words in your mouth now, but turnabout is fair play.

Your posts are tiresome, Chad, and one of the few things that keeps me checking TCR comments is to read comments like #55.

"It is, however, the single most important offensive statistic. "

Not fact. You are like every other parrot here BRWAK! OBP. BRWAK! OPS! That is what is tiresome. OBP is not the most important stat in baseball. And by your own definition it's not. I'm tired of posters like you. You know what the most important stat is? Wins!!!! Wins!!!!! I am so tired of you pseudo-intellectuals who think this fucking game is played with dice.

If OBP was so fucking important, every GM would do everything they can to find guys with high OBP. But there is more to the game than OB FUCKING P!!!! OBP by itself, when only examined by itself is WORTHLESS!!!!!! As is every stat. OBP with no speed or power or defensive coupled with a buck 80 gets you a cup of coffee in starbucks. This league would be littered with Matt Murtons and Ryan Theriots. BUT ITS NOT!!!!

And furthermore,

Why would you start Sandberg over Stanky? Maybe cause you agree, that there is more to baseball than OBP. Maybe you need to take everything into account when looking at stats. Not just OBP.

Lastly, I find it interesting that you took the moniker of a man with a career .320 OBP.

1) Apologies if my comment came off as rude, Chad. Yours certainly do, but perhaps they're not intended as such.

2) Regarding OBP, it correlates more strongly to runs scored than any other offensive stat. We could argue indefinitely about its relative importance to other stats. I don’t have time for that.
I never said OBP is more important than Ws. That’s why I said “offensive stat.” Obviously, Ws are the goal in any sport. Once again, you’re putting words in other people’s mouths

3) “Why would you start Sandberg over Stanky? Maybe cause you agree, that there is more to baseball than OBP. Maybe you need to take everything into account when looking at stats. Not just OBP.”
[Applause.] That’s the point I was trying to make, but I didn’t want to be pedantic. OBP is not the end-all-be-all. I haven’t seen any comments to that effect on TCR, but you seem to infer this from other people’s posts. It’s inaccurate when you claim this is what other people are saying. That’s exactly why I gave the example of Ryno and The Brat. OBP was one of the weaker parts of Sandberg’s game (although it was still above average because he was such a well-rounded player). Stanky probably had two advantages over him: OBP (certainly) and turning the DP (maybe). No one would start Stanky over Sandberg. Why? Because of Sandberg’s advantages in virtually every other facet of the game. Heck, I might start Juan Samuel (’84-’87 vintage) over Stanky, depending on other factors.

4) Good general managers do look for players with good OBP (Branch Ricky, for example). That doesn’t mean you can put a cryogenically frozen Ted Williams in a Rascal and have him play the middle infield. No one is arguing this.

Did Bill James kick your dog or something?

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