Dr. Joseph Hecht's Archives

“…But If You Try Some Time, You Get What You Need”

If Eric Patterson had only known how much impact his tardiness would create in the 2007 playoff picture. When Corey's little brother was sent down to the AA Tennessee Smokies playoffs as the consequence of his reporting late to the ballpark, little did he realize he just might have Wally Pipped himself. In a quasi-punitive measure, Cubs GM Jim Hendry sent EPat out and recalled Sam Fuld.

Vitters and the Game of Chicken

Jim Callis, Baseball America's minor league guru was on XM Radio Saturday morning. He updated the first round draft choices which haven't signed yet. The deadline to sign is this next Wednesday, August 15th. The only one signed in the top 5 is Pittsburgh's (#4) pick potential closer Dan Moskos, who did sign for the slotted $2.5 million dollars. Callis thinks Cubs (#3) pick third baseman Josh Vitters will sign but is waiting to see what the #2 pick gets, KC's Michael Moustakas (a Scott Boras client). Everyone involved is eager to see how much above the MLB slot money the agents particularly Boras can get. He believes #1 pick David Price (also in the Boras camp) will sign and that they may already have an agreement but are trying not to release it until the last minute. It seems that if they announced it early it will affect how much above the slotted money the other top picks sign for. It's a game of chicken so blinking at the last minute makes it harder to make the other's blink in unison leading to falling dominoes. Although Callis thought all the top picks will sign, the two with the highest probability to not sign would be Boras clients, Moustakas and catcher Matt Wieters (#5, Baltimore).

M*A*S*H

Can Hawkeye Pierce be added to the coaching staff? It's not just incoming, we've finally got some outgoing from the M*A*S*H unit. Last week we added Kerry Wood to the bullpen (it's a miracle!) and now pinch hitter deluxe, Darryle Ward is in Colorado almost fully recovered from his calf/gastrocnemius muscle strain and just might be reactivated for the weekend. Darryle doesn't want to miss the high altitude hitting. Friday Morning Update on Aramis Ramirez follows...

Quadrophenia or Who’s in Left? Why.

As an eyewitness to the Alfonso Soriano now infamous grade II quadriceps strain, the repercussions from it have taken a life of their own. I saw that gleam in Soriano’s eyes as he rounded second base. He knew he had a 5th gear and shifted the transmission so he could motor on into third base. He never did make it to third base. Inning over, and a call in to AAMCO! Mighty Alfonso had grabbed the front of his right thigh…metaphorically, there was smoke coming out of his transmission, never a good sign. He couldn’t even walk to third base, so Met David Wright walked over and tagged him. Next, in great irony, our third base coach named Quade (in the old country, the family name was Quadracepese but they shortened it when they came to America) helps him and lends a shoulder and a leg to stand on as he leaves the field. Did I wait on the MRI with baited breath? No. I knew right then and there it was going to be 4 or more weeks for Alfonso.

Down to the Trading Deadline Wire…

Rumor mongers vs the real deals. Eric Gagne, Bronson Arroyo, Octavio Dotel, Bobby Kielty, Ryan Church or Reggie Sanders? 4 way deal for A-Rod? Have at it. ...and Carlos, MVN's own "The Transaction Guy" is monitoring every possible wire report for information on that last minute deal coming at cha. (OK, so it's a shameless plug)

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  • so far ryan williams (AAA) is the only system prospect on the "could be ready soon" horizon doing well...that said, he's assumed to be an end-rotation talent at best.

    paul blackburn is getting great early returns in AA, but he's getting surprisingly low K numbers doing it. he throws lot of low/sinking stuff with good control...also assumed to be an end-rotation guy, but he's got room to be better, especially given his control.

    crunch 29 sec ago view
  • Speaking of pitching -- another ugly outing for Underwood at AA. Through 6 starts: 5.19 ERA, WHIP 1.69. Yikes!

    Man, do we need starting pitching depth. Our best hopes are still hanging with AZ Phil in Arizona. Very scary.

    billybucks 48 min 44 sec ago view
  • jeebus... that's terrible.

    Ryno 1 hour 49 min ago view
  • *clap* *clap* *clap*

    Brick 3 hours 50 min ago view
  • Thanks AZ. If you like him, I like him.

    Old and Blue 4 hours 45 min ago view
  • Awesome report, and good to see Beeler on his way back.

    I'm also very happy to hear about the bi-level bump for Daniel Lewis. In the Name of Theo, he was the Last of the Full-Season Cuts, and There Will Be Blood for those who unnecessarily slow his development. Sure, he might end up in independent ball pitching for Lincoln. But if everything breaks right, he may even have a shot at joining up with the Gangs of Chicago. I wouldn't bet My Left Foot on it, though.

    John Beasley 5 hours 12 min ago view
  • CHARLIE: The Cubs did the same thing with LHSP Eric Jokisch last month, and it has nothing to do with needing the player's 40-man roster slot. 

    The hope is that another MLB club will claim the player, so that you aren't on the hook for any termination pay (which you would be if you release him) AND you pick up $20,000 from the claiming team, all for a guy you don't want going forward anyway.  

    Arizona Phil 5 hours 14 min ago view
  • Moosetacos, I like it. All I can think of is a bearded lumberjack dude operating a Mexican style taco truck with a Canadian accent.

    Sonicwind75 5 hours 49 min ago view
  • How strange is this for May? Is it insignificant, or does it suggest some sort of trade might be in the works?

    Charlie 5 hours 55 min ago view
  • The Cubs have sent LHRP C. J. Riefenhauser outright to Iowa. 

    Cubs MLB 40-man roster now stands at 37 (three slots open). 

    Arizona Phil 6 hours 38 min ago view
  • yow...the a.gordon/m.moustakas collision now makes the schwarb collision look minor in scope.

    gordon broke his wrist, expected to miss 4+ weeks...and today moosetacos has been diagnosed with a torn ACL. fun times in KC.

    crunch 8 hours 12 min ago view
  • dodgers calling up julio urias for tommorow's game. neat.

    fernando-mania might have a new heir...dude is 19 (turns 20 in august) and he's got a legit argument for being MLB-ready.

    crunch 9 hours 3 min ago view
  • jacos 10 hours 23 min ago view
  • Happ was the #9 pick last year, and he moved from OF to 2B in the same offseason that Castro was traded.

    Gleyber also in the picture at second.

    VirginiaPhil 13 hours 51 min ago view
  • jacos 14 hours 11 min ago view
  • Co-sign

    Ryno 14 hours 11 min ago view