Archive - Feb 2008

February 12th

Chicago’s favorite former Chunichi Dragon gets the attention of the New York Times today. The article talks about how Fukudome played shortstop (badly) for his first three years as a pro, and the memory of that evoked this funny, self-deprecating description of what kind of shortstop Fukudome was:

“The kind that caused my pitchers great anxiety.”

(Actually, the comment came through Fukudome’s translator. I guess that means the comment wasn’t self-deprecating...just deprecating.)

Most interesting part of the piece to me was the connection drawn between Fukudome’s move to the outfield and his emergence as a big-time hitter. Fukudome thinks it's no coincidence that the events happened in tandem; says he found playing the outfield "much more relaxing."

If Fukudome struggles early, I hope the right field bleacher creatures at Wrigley give him a break. Otherwise "relaxing" will be the last word he'll use to describe his new home.

February 11th

The phrase "ex-Cub factor" has been thrown around quite a bit. It was
originally coined by writer and Cub fan Ron Berler, who wrote an
article in 1981 stating that since the Yankees of that season had five
ex-Cubs on their roster, they were doomed to lose the World Series if
they got there. He was right -- they lost to the Dodgers in six games.

Roster Rules & Procedures

LAST UPDATED: 8-17-2014


39 players, plus one player is on the 60-day Disabled List (one slot is open).

Part of what makes TCR great is the knowledgeable and active participation of the readers. I mean, it's a very SMALL part, of course, but still a part. Keep sending stuff in, and we'll keep reading it. And maybe, just maybe, posting it. - Trans

By Lawhide

Being bored recently, I decided to work on some statistical tomfoolery: I decided to find out who was the ABP for each Cubs pitcher in the majors. What’s an ABP? I took the OBP- and SLG-against for each pitcher and tried to find the most comparable 2007 MLB hitter. For instance, batters hitting against Will Ohman in 2007 hit a line of .355 OBP and .436 SLG (an OPS-against of .791). Luis Gonzalez (the old one) hit .359/.433/.792 this year, making him Will Ohman’s Average Batting Partner, or ABP.

Keep in mind that there’s not really any useful statistical information in an exercise like this, it’s purely for fun (at least, fun for those of us who are into the numbers side of things). That being said, here are your 2007 Cubs Pitcher ABPs.

February 10th

With Cubs pitchers & catchers scheduled to report to Fitch Park in Mesa this week, and with position players scheduled to report next week, let's take a quick look at the Cubs 2008 Spring Training roster:

February 8th

...for those that missed out on the West Coast scores.

- One of our wonderful readers, "Wolf at the Door" has been burning the midnight oil with all kinds of fancy charts and graphs over at the Wolf-Report. Fantastic stuff. His latest is a comparison of Japanese players making the transition to the majors, although he did forget one player....

- Tadahito Iguchi, who John Dewan points out had remarkably similar numbers to Fukudome in their age 29 seasons in Japan (that was two years ago for Fukudome). Iguchi's first season with the White Sox produced a 278/342/438 line with 15 HR's. That doesn't sound $12M worthy.

- Another Dewan factoid questioning the effectiveness of the Cubs seven-year run as NL strikeout kings.

- I was actually going to mention that same "Stat of the Day" that Cubnut did earlier, but more for the fact that Zambrano has the most plate appearances (84) for a .300 hitter or above without a hit by pitch or a walk in a season (in 2005). I also wanted to note the one about "The Most Average Batters of All Time". Bill Buckner leads the list of hitters with most career plate appearances and an OPS+ between 99 and 101.

- I thought this article was a fun read by Ken Arneson on "How to Defeat a Sabermetrician in an Argument".

- A few weeks back I put up a video of Hendry watching a Felix Pie home run. Here's the clip of the actual moonshot.

Enjoy the weekend....

-- Dayn Perry’s anti-All Star list–the worst National Leaguers, position by position–includes no Cubs, but two exes, Jason Kendall and Juan Pierre.

Congratulations, men.

-- Riffing off of Friday's Stat of the Day feature at, a list of players who went an entire season without a BB or HBP, here’s a list of Cub hitters who achieved the feat, in descending number of plate appearances:

Joe Carter (52 PA’s in 1983)
Dee Fondy (51 PA’s in 1957)
Mike Hubbard (39 PA’s in 1996)
Bubbles Hargrave (37 PA’s in 1914)
Don Young (36 PA’s in 1965)
Billy Cowan (36 PA’s in 1963)
Coaker Triplett (36 PA’s in 1938)
Rob Talbot (32 PA’s in 1953)
Sandy Martinez (30 PA’s in 1999)
Jeff Kunkel (29 PA’s in 1992)

Note: no Neifi Perez. Just doesn’t seem right. (And yes, Bubbles Hargrave is Pinky's brother.)

-- A tv-related note by way of the Muskrat: Comcast marks the 10th anniversary of Harry Caray’s passing with a day of Harry-related programming on February 18th. Included will be a documentary on Harry’s life and complete rebroadcasts of three big games from Caray’s time with the Cubs, including the NL East clincher in 1984.

--The sun is out in Chicago today for what seems like the first time in months. A fitting reason to point out that pitchers and catchers report to Mesa 5 days, 23 hours, 48 minutes and 26 seconds from now.

February 6th

...we have rumors. 

Ken Rosenthal throws a few bones out there about the Cubs, including Coco Crisp and Brian Roberts talk. To fill my monthly MVN quota, I will be posting the full excerpts below:

The Cubs do not view Crisp as a viable alternative if they fail to acquire Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts; Crisp's .329 career on-base percentage makes him ill-suited for the top of the order, and the Cubs don't want a center fielder who might block Felix Pie or Tyler Colvin; they would prefer a platoon partner such as the Rangers' Marlon Byrd.

And on Roberts...

Trading Roberts would be the logical next step in the Orioles' tear-down, but even though the team finally is on the verge of sending Erik Bedard to the Mariners, a Roberts deal might not quickly follow. The Orioles and Cubs have spoken infrequently over the past several weeks, sources say, and while some Cubs officials believe that a deal remains possible, others aren't so sure. The Orioles are likely to insist on Pie, a player the Cubs are not willing to move in a package for Roberts ...

At least the last sentence about not willing to move Pie is encouraging.

Today, Carrie Muskat asks herself, "Can Dempster make a successful conversion from closer to starter?"
Her answer:

After three seasons as the closer, Dempster is switching back to the rotation for the first time, full-time, since 2002. The right-hander has trained hard this offseason, but it won't be easy to go from one-inning outings to seven or eight. He'll be challenged with the addition of Lieber.

I think Dempster will mostly be challenged by the fact that he is not a very good starting pitcher.
Dempster's career numbers as a starting pitcher only, along with those of another guy who we often kick around:




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February 5th

LAST UPDATED: 8-18-2014

Chicago Cubs Organizational Depth Chart  
C Welington Castillo/John Baker Rafael Lopez/Eli Whiteside Charlie Cutler/Taylor Davis Kyle Schwarber/Willson Contreras/Ben Carhart Victor Caratini/Cael Brockmeyer/Mark Zagunis
1B Anthony Rizzo Mike Olt Dustin Geiger/Lars Anderson Dan Vogelbach/Rock Shoulders Jacob Rogers
2B Javy Baez Logan Watkins Stephen Bruno Gioskar Amaya Chesny Young/Danny Lockhart
3B Luis Valbuena Kris Bryant/Jonathon Mota Christian Villanueva Jordan Hankins Jeimer Candelario
SS Starlin Castro/Chris Valaika Elliot Soto Addison Russell Marco Hernandez/Wes Darvill Carlos Penalver
LF Chris Coghlan Josh Vitters/Manny Ramirez Pin-Chieh Chen/Anthony Giansanti Bijan Rademacher Shawon Dunston Jr
CF Arismendy Alcantara/Matt Szczur Junior Lake Albert Almora Jake Hannemann Trey Martin
RF Justin Ruggiano/Ryan Sweeney Jorge Soler/Ryan Kalish Jae-Hoon Ha Billy McKinney Jeffrey Baez/Yasiel Balaguert
REHAB: +++++++++++ +++++++++++ +++++++++++ +++++++++++
Starting Pitchers
1 Jake Arrieta (R)
2 Travis Wood (L)
3 Edwin Jackson (R)
4 Kyle Hendricks (R)
5 Tsuyoshi Wada (L)
IOWA Dan Straily (R), Chris Rusin (L), Dallas Beeler (R), Eric Jokisch (L), and Carlos Pimentel (R) - REHAB: Felix Doubront (L)
TENN C. J. Edwards (R), Pierce Johnson (R), Corey Black (R), Ivan Pineyro (R), and Felix Pena (R)
DAYT Rob Zastryzny (L), Tayler Scott (R), Juan Carlos Paniagua (R), Jose Rosario (R), and Eduardo Figueroa (R)
KANE Paul Blackburn (R), Daury Torrez (R), Jen-Ho Tseng (R), Jonathan Martinez (R), Ben Wells (R), and Duane Underwood (R)
Relief Pitchers
1 Hector Rondon (R)
2 Pedro Strop (R)
3 Neil Ramirez (R)
4 Wesley Wright (L)
5 Kyuji Fujikawa (R)
6 Justin Grimm (R)
7 Carlos Villanueva (R)
8 Jacob Turner (R)
IOWA Blake Parker (R), Armando Rivero (R), Arodys Vizcaino (R), Zac Rosscup (L), Marcus Hatley (R), Marcos Mateo (R), Alberto Cabrera (R), and Yoanner Negrin (R)
TENN Frank Batista (R), P. J. Francescon (R), Blake Cooper (R), Hunter Cervenka (L), Zach Cates (R), Andrew McKirahan (L), Lendy Castillo (R), Jeff Lorick (L), and Matt Loosen (R)
DAYT Zack Godley (R), Michael Jensen (R), Austin Kirk (L), Steve Perakslis (R), Starling Peralta (R), Gerardo Concepcion (L), Justin Amlung (R), and Yao-Lin Wang (R)
KANE Michael Wagner (R), David Garner (R), Jasvir Rakkar (R), Michael Heesch (L), Francisco Carrillo (R), Zak Hermans (R), and Tyler Ihrig (L)
SP Trevor Clifton (R), Erick Leal (R), Trevor Graham (R), Josh Conway (R), Dillon Maples (R), and James Norwood (R)
RP Trey Lang (R), Brad Markey (R), Sam Wilson (L), James Farris (R), Ryan Williams (R), Tommy Thorpe (L), Jeremy Null (R), Yomar Morel (R), Alberto Diaz (L), Daniel Lewis (R), Ryan McNeil (R), and Jake Stinnett (R) - REHAB: Corbin Hoffner (R)
C Justin Marra/Mark Malave
1B Danny Canela
2B David Bote/Alex Tomasovich
3B Jesse Hodges
SS Bryant Flete/Jason Vosler
LF Kevin Brown
CF Rashad Crawford/Charles White
RF Charcer Burks
SP Jesus Castillo (R), Alex Santana (R), Jose Paulino (L), Luis Hernandez (R), Adbert Alzolay (R), Justin Steele (L), and Carson Sands (L)
RP Pedro Araujo (R), Jeferson Mejia (R), Hector Perez (R), Andin Diaz (L), Trey Hedges (R), Austyn Willis (R), Tanner Griggs (R), Jordan Minch (L), Greyfer Eregua (R), John Michael Knighton (R), and Scott Frazier (R) - REHAB: Marcelo Carreno (R) and James Pugliese (R)
C Tyler Pearson/Erick Castillo/Tyler Alamo/Alberto Mineo
1B Roney Alcala/Joey Martarano
2B Andrew Ely/Ho-Young Son
3B Varonex Cuevas/Adonis Paula
SS Gleyber Torres
LF Ricardo Marcano
CF Kevonte Mitchell/Calvin Graves
RF Eloy Jimenez/Shamil Ubiera
SP Oscar de la Cruz (R), Jose Morel (R), Andri Rondon (R), Erling Moreno (R), Santiago Rodriguez (R), and and Moises Ramirez (R)
RP Aneuris Rosario (R), Pedro Silverio (R), Luiz Escanio (R), Assael Aquino (R), Chris Pieters (L), Deibi Torres (R), Dilson Vasquez (R), Jeffry Hernandez (R), Junior Marte (R), and Jesus Perez (L)
C Johan Matos/Antonio Valerio/Carlos Ramirez/Erick Gonzalez/Richard Nunez/Martin Hodwalker
1B Jose Paniagua/Jhonny Pena
2B Franklin Tineo
3B Miguel Ruiz
SS Carlos Jimenez/Frandy de la Rosa
LF Robert Garcia/Luis Acosta
CF Roberto Caro
RF Jenner Emeterio/Luis Ubiera
SP Enrique de los Rio (R), Yapson Gomez (L), Carlos Rodriguez (L), Harrinson Bermudez (R), and Gabriel Lima (R)
RP Jesus Arias (R), Julio Sanchez (R), Eugenio Palma (L), Jose Leidenz (R), Juan Rengifo (R), Alex Pacheco (L), Mauro Vides (R), Salvador Jerez (R), Ivan Medina (R), Angel Mejias (L), Yeiker Lovera (R), Ramon Valera (R), and Alfredo Colorado (R)
C Jhonny Pereda/Roberto Vahlis/Leonardo Gonzalez
1B Miguel Rico/Fidel Matos
2B Henry Pedra/Jesus Gonzalez/Danny Gutierrez
3B Wladimir Galindo
SS Andruw Monasterio/Humberto Garcia
LF Luis Hidalgo/Moises Colasante
CF Jose Gonzalez
RF Luis Ayala
CUBS RHP James McDonald (shoulder) is on 60-day DL (retro to 3/21), LHP Felix Doubront (left calf strain) is on 15-Day DL (retro to 7/31) and is on a MINOR LEAGUE REHAB ASSIGNMENT at IOWA, and RHP Brian Schlitter (right shoulder) is on 15-day DL (retro to 8/9)
IOWA RHP Barret Loux (2014 TJS) and RHP Trey McNutt (shoulder) are on 60-day DL, and RHP Dae-Eun Rhee and INF Edgar Gonzalez (calf) are on 7-day DL
TENN LHP Jeffry Antigua, RHP Tony Zych, C Luis Flores, OF John Andreoli, and OF Rubi Silva are on 7-day DL
DAYT C Nate Maldonado (player-coach) is INACTIVE, RHP Marcelo Carreno (2013 shoulder surgery) is on 7-day DL and is on an INJURY REHAB ASSIGNMENT at AZL CUBS, RHP Tyler Skulina is on 7-day DL, LHP Anthony Prieto (2014 TJS) and RHP Austin Reed (elbow) are on 60-day DL, and LHP Nathan Dorris and C Lance Rymel are on 7-day DL
KANE RHP Brad Renner (2014 TJS) and OF Kevin Encarnacion (injuries suffered in off-season car crash) are on 60-day DL, RHP Corbin Hoffner is on 7-day DL and is on an INJURY REHAB ASSIGNMENT at BOISE, RHP James Pugliese is on 7-day DL and is on an INJURY REHAB ASSIGNMENT at AZL CUBS, C Will Remillard (back) is on 7-day DL, and IF-OF Tim Saunders is on TEMPORARILY INACTIVE LIST
AZLC LHP Frailyn Figueroa and RHP Jose Zapata (injuries suffered in off-season car crash) are on 60-day DL, and RHP Jordan Brink, RHP Dylan Cease (2014 TJS), and RHP Trey Masek are on 7-day DL
DSLC RHP Gilberto Abreu and RHP Wagner Disla are INACTIVE, RHP Luis Guillen is on SUSPENDED LIST, and LHP Wander Cabrera, INF Yeiler Peguero, and INF Tony Rico have been SIGNED FOR FUTURE SERVICE
VSLC LHP Manuel Fuentes, LHP Victor Garcia, RHP Brohiglyn Rivero, RHP Cesar Romero, and 1B Delbis Arcila are INACTIVE, and RHP Emilio Ferrebus and INF Francisco Garay have been SIGNED FOR FUTURE SERVICE

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