Samardzija Down, the Other Fox Up....

It looks like I was on to something yesterday when I mentioned that Jeff Samardzija might get sent down. Chad Fox gets the call-up and has been added to the 40-man roster. As in years past, when Fox blows out his arm and has to go on the 60-day DL, the Cubs can call up anyone from their organization for the playoffs to take his spot (as long as he was with the organization by September 1st I believe).

Also, Derrek Lee sits again with the bulging disc issue and the lineup for tonight is Soriano, Riot, Bradley, Ramirez, Soto, Johnson, Hoffpauir, Miles and Harden against lefty Mike Hampton


chad fox and angel guzman both to the DL with undisclosed hand injuries after greeting each other with a failed high-5.


I hope no one is too excited about Chad Fox. I think the Cubs just feel like they owe him one from Dusty re-ruining his arm a few years ago.

Fox had problems with control though the last few times he's been on the team so I don't see him exactly coming into Lou's good side.

My nickname for Fox: twigs and duct tape. As in whats keeping his arm held together :)

chad fox didn't need help ruining his arm...and if that's a concern you'd probably want to avoid gregg/marmol recently throwing 5 out of 6 days in a row for 100-120 pitches each.

Oh I was just joking about Dusty ruining his arm, BUT the game that he did have his injury in 2005, he came into the game in a 10-3 game. Therefore its always stuck in my head that in an alternate universe Dusty could have saved Fox for a different situation.

yeah...guys like chad fox and rondell white amaze me.

somehow...somewhere...they will find a way to get injured.

fox likes to get his over with real quick, though. heheh...

I was at that game.

Dunn's hr hit off Fox, looked like it was shot out of a bazooka, it was a line drive out of the park.

Glad Smardzdick got sent sent down as he clearly is not ready for the bigs yet, but I am sorry it needlessly came up at the expense of losing Vizcaino.



Got his first RBI yesterday and his first XBH today. Hopefully Skinny Dick will get it going.

So, we ate $3.6M in salary for cutting a guy who hadn't given up a run yet, so that we can give Samardzija a few weeks in the bigs and replace him with Chad Fox?

A bizarre move a few weeks ago, now just turned into an idiotic one.

Although I approve of a lot of the offseason moves that Hendry has made and a lot of how Lou has handled playing time, there has been some embarrassing mismanagement of the roster recently. Skipping over my probably unjustified love of prospects, I'll just look at the bullpen. The releases of Gaudin and Vizcaino made very little sense; Vizcaino certainly could have done what Samardzija did in his few weeks and is probably as likely to succeed as Chad Fox is, and Gaudin makes at least as much sense for the Cubs bullpen as does Patton (who I like, but how often do Rule 5 pitchers work out?). Also, the trade of Wuertz looks like a mistake (at least the Cubs got a couple minor leaguers back for him). How much better would the Cubs bullpen look with some or all of those guys still in it? Keeping all three would have been tough, but clearly there was room for at least one and possibly two (if they end up returning Patton).

Just so this isn't entirely a "FIRE HENDRY!!!!" rant; they've done a good job putting together a competitive team lately, and I really think the offense and rotation will give them time to find an adequate combination of relievers.

Everyone looks for bullpen help in July. The only way the Cubs, without really overpaying for a reliever, can improve the bullpen is from within, and I just don't see where that is going to come from at this time.

Well, Ascanio and Reinhard have been kicking a fair amount of ass. It's not like they need to call up a couple guys to take over the 7th, 8th, and 9th inning roles. They need a middle reliever or two. Guess we'll get a look at Randy Wells on Friday, as well.

but how often do Rule 5 pitchers work out?

I don't know how often, as in how many are successful out of the total universe of Rule 5 pitchers, but-- I do know of one particular Rule 5 pitcher named Johan Santana who did pretty well after the Twins picked him up. Another notable Rule 5 pickup in Cubs history was catcher Jody Davis.

Some other notable Rule 5 picks:

Our own Hack Wilson, Tony Taylor* and Guillermo "Willie" Hernandez
Cecil Cooper
George Bell
Darrell Evans
Fernando Vina
Bobby Bonilla
Mitch Williams
Josh Hamilton
Joakim Soria

....and of course, the greatest Rule 5 pick of all-time, Roberto Clemente himself.

*The Cubs got some decent play from Taylor and turned him into Don "No-Hit" Cardwell via trade. Which was turned into Larry Jackson via trade. Which was turned into Fergie via trade. Which was eventually turned into Bill Madlock via trade. Which was then turned into Bobby Murcer via trade. The Cubs got one HELLUVA lot of value out of Tony Taylor.

Point taken, but is David Patton one of those high-upside picks? I've never heard him described that way. I'm not opposed to having him--he's done okay so far and looks like he's got good enough stuff to be a successful relief pitcher eventually. But I just think that Wuertz or Gaudin might have been better bets. Of course, it's kind of early to know that.

Go Reed Go!!! Gathright might never start again in CF, not that that would be a problem.

Oh wait, I shouldn't be posting now as the Cubs are winning. I am suppose to be hiding from TCR...sorry!

Hunter Pence should have to look at 4 pitches about a foot inside every time he steps to the plate against the Cubs. He absolutely murders Cubs pitching, so why not make him really earn first base instead of all the XBH he gets?

that Vizcaino was released for reasons other than his baseball ability...

I keep forgetting about his tardiness.

I hate Lance Berkman!!

I hate the Crawford Boxes. Most high school fields are longer than 315 down the line.

That's not even a home run at Wrigley. Cheap.

And I'm not worried at all about Chad Fox. He won't be anything special, but he'll be fine filling in Samardjiza's role.

Soothing win.
It sure is nice to see a game where things worked out the way we had all envisioned back in March.

Manny Acta looks very frustrated.

And a BB RBI on a pitch that looked like it was headed for the upper deck. Literally. God, this isn't good baseball at all I should go to bed.

Trade idea:

Oakland is desperate for sluggers, we need middle relief help, and a lefty reliever would be particularly welcome. What if the Cubs sent Jake Fox to the A's for Jerry Blevins, who was sent to Oakland for Jason Kendall two years ago? Would help both teams....

Recent comments

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  • it's day old news, and it's got nothing to do with the cubs, but ichiro signed a $2m deal with MIA (with a $2m option for 2017).

    neat. 41 years old and damn close to 3000 hits.

    also, rain delays suck.

  • take that giants

  • I think that if a team objects to the 1-game wildcard playin game so much, they could just win the pennant and avoid themselves the trouble.

  • Per Jesse Sanchez at, Cubs reportedly have signed 20-year old Cuban OF Eddy Julio Martinez for $3M bonus. 

  • BLOCK: Of course any advantage is an advantage. An MLB, NBA, or NHL team getting the extra game at home in a seven game series is an advantage, I just don't think it is enough of an advantage for winning a division and/or having the best record in a conference or league over the course of an 82-game season (NBA and NHL) or 162 game series (MLB).

  • TEX takes the opening game from TOR (@TOR) 5-3.

    TOR lost bautista + donaldson in-game due to injuries...TEX lost beltre...dunno if any will be lingering issues leading to missed games.

  • Ride the Kid Magic! Schwarber hadn't homered in a long time before last night.

  • Greg Maddux was 8-18 in his rookie season. Kyle has the 8 wins down pat.

    Think Baby Maddux.

    Prof. Harold Hill's THINK system at work.

    Kyle is on the far left.

  • I support this. Hendricks has not only looked better lately but seems to start struggling after a few innings which is better than the 1st in the playoffs.

  • Just tweeted via Jesse Rogers: Hendricks starting Game 2. Wow. Just wow.

  • That was good!

  • Well said. On one hand, I thought the HBP was a bad baseball play -- down 4 runs, put a runner on for a red-hot Fowler. On the other hand, they needed to do something -- I hadn't thought about the warning/pitching inside point. Is Hurdle that smart? He does not strike me that way. By the way -- not clear which fan base you are referring to in your "first" 3rd point.

  • My unsolicited opinions on topics covered in this thread:
    1. I hate the fact that after 162 games, a team could be out after 1 game. However, I think the system is pretty close to perfect right now. 2 of 3 isn't feasible unless they shorten the regular season, and it ices the division winners for way too long. This creates excitement, and rewards the division winners.

  • Personally, I think the game could have had a very different look had the Pirates held onto the ball and tagged Fowler out on the steal in the first. Cole was clearly frazzled, but if they took that runner off the base, it could have relaxed him a lot.

  • Football games are played once a week. There are 16 games a year. I'm not even remotely following at all how you can compare the two leagues and playoff systems. It is physically impossible to play a home and away series. The idea of not having any road games in baseball playoffs is certainly a head scratcher.

    How is not having the first and last game at home a benefit for the division winners and team with the best record? How is it not an incentive to win the division when a WC team has to blow their top pitcher?

    Call me lost.

  • Two 97+ win teams in a do-or-die, great bullpens, overpowering starters, plenty of pop--hard to believe that game wouldn't be tense. A 4-0 lead is not a blowout, especially in that situation and with the Cubs' young bullpen. Not only would a defensive play here or there make a difference, but you get the win there also on the home plate umps strike zone (generous strike calls for Arrieta, including a couple Ks), and on Schwarber sitting on the right pitch at the right time.