Baseball Prospectus, Condensed For Your At-Work Reading
What the latest Baseball Prospectus annual has to say about the Cubs, minus all those pesky numbers and the obscure historical and literary allusions:
"...Cedeno's is a tried and true skill set–the same one that's earning Orlando Cabrera millions of dollars every season..."
"...has experienced a steady decline in his groundball rates over the past three seasons...coupled with command that was never very good to begin with..."
"If the Cubs bring in a Brian Roberts-type...the gains will be less than they might appear at first glance."
"An inspired acquisition...a J.D. Drew/Bobby Abreu type of player..."
"...Hill's probably going to need to work on (a pitch in addition to his curveball) if he wants to be an ace instead of a very solid number two."
"...probably the Cubs' best relief pitcher entering the season, at least when the wind is blowing in."
"Expect a little more in the home run department, but perhaps a little less of everything else."
"...his should prove to be one of the best contracts signed between the 2006 and 2007."
"To build on his breakout season, Marmol will have to rely less on his fastball and...work on throwing his good curveball down in the zone."
"...a borderline liability for a team that aspires to make the playoffs."
"...a ton of upside here...(the Cubs) need to make a commitment to him as a big-league regular..."
"...one of the most underappreciated stars of the NL."
"...a very good player who sometimes gets mistaken for a great one."
"...one of the more valuable prospects in baseball...already the best catcher in the division..."
"...overrated for a variety of reasons...the Cubs need to upgrade at shortstop."
"Don't expect miracles...should be a decent major-league reliever."
"...(has) finally developed decent command over (his) slippery, slidey arsenal..."
"...a pitcher of legendary durability, but...probably closer to a number two than a true ace in most other respects."