TCR Friday Notes and a Call for Help

- Cubbery at its finest:

As Lee and Baker were mobbed by teammates in the dugout, relief pitcher Angel Guzman
slapped the side of Lee's helmet, causing Lee to experience neck spasms
that forced him to come out of the game for defense in the bottom of
the ninth.

- Rich Harden is shutting it down for the year, a mutual decision between him and the club. The tone of the article sounds like there isn't much interest by either party in reuniting beyond this season. Fine by me, but will the Cubs offer arbitration?

- Wittenmyer has a rundown of the Cubs rotation down the stretch.

Fri-Sun @ Giants: Zambrano vs Lincecum tonight, then Gorzelanny and Wells.

Tues-Thurs vs. Pittsburgh: Dempster, Lilly and Z for the doubleheader on Wednesday, then Gorzelanny

Fri-Sun vs. Arizona: Samardzija, Wells and Dempster.

- Fangraphs takes a shot at Tyler Colvin, misrepresenting that he was sent down to start the year, although it was actually because he was still rehabbing his elbow and Daytona uses a DH. Nonetheless I have to agree he's nothing more than a fringe prospect. If they can't get Felix Pie to work out, I don't see Colvin having much of a shot. Fangraphs also ran a piece on some of the recent Korean signings by the Cubs with Hak-Ju Lee leading the way.

- The Cubs sale inches closer to completion with bankruptcy court approving the deal. The Cubs will enter Chapter 11 bankruptcy on October 12th as part of the deal with an approval hearing on October 13th. They hope to have the owners approval by then. According to the Trib article, the first opportunity by the MLB owners to vote will be October 5th.

- Milton's signing is in the running for worst contract of the offseason over at MLBTR.

- Don't forget to join the fun at The Bear Truth, hopefully we can get a crowd for Parachat during the game.

- We're going to be doing a slightly more involved upgrade here at TCR once the season ends and I could use some help testing out the site. If anyone has some time next week to bombard the test site comments and check it out at a scheduled time, let me know. What that time is yet  I don't know, but probably near game time of one of the Cubs/Pirates games next week.

- A lot of folks were upset over Michael Jordan's Hall of Fame acceptance speech. It certainly wasn't the most gracious thing I ever heard, but at least it wasn't boring. Name how many Hall of Fame basketball, football or baseball speeches anyone ever remembers? Now granted I'd pay more attention to an MJ speech over most players, but it was indeed memorable and certainly fit the character of the player many of us grew up watching and sadly idolizing. Joe Posnanski and Jason Whitlock have good articles justifying the speech if you're interested.

Why am I writing about the Bulls and MJ? Because this abomination of a Cubs season is still going on. Hell, they made me starts a Bears blog.

 

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Comments

Apparently, Shawon Dunston initially contested the bankruptcy proceeds for the Trib claiming the Cubs still owed him money for college. However, he later dropped his claim.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/chi-fri-cub...

I'm sure it's in that link, but his financial advisor told him to write a letter saying the Cubs owed him money to go to college, even though he never went to college. Dunston was like, I have no problem with the Cubs, sorry about all the trouble.

Well how is he going to afford college without the money the Cubs promised him?

I wonder if teams still do that or just say 'You get $300,000, save some for college if you are going to wash out."

if I recall the original article I read, he would only get the money if he enrolled, which he never did...

Dear Jim Hendry,

Please offer arbitration to Rich Harden.

Best regards

The esteemed Dr. Aaron B esquire

OBGYN

You're both an attorney and a gynecologist?!

That must come in handy.

I wear many hats............and gloves

Brrrrrattt.

Rim shot.

Washington hit 100 losses already, but with the way Pittsburgh has played since the dismantling, being only 5 back might be attainable for the Bucs.

If Harper's half of what he's said to be, let him be in the NL East.

A lot of people are confusing Harper with Strasberg. It's like comparing Shawon Dunston to Ken Griffey Jr. Just because you're a consensus #1 pick, it doesn't make you a once in a generation talent, and there's still some debate whether he's the #1 guy.

EDIT* I should also add that the guy Pitssuburg took with as a "signability guy" this year, looks like he maybe should have been the #2 overall, at least to this point. They've got Alvarez coming too. We may not be able to count them for 11 wins a year in the near future.

Who is the Dunston and who is the Griffey in that scenario?

I barely followed Harper so far, but hasn't he been anointed "The Chosen One"? Something about 500 ft home runs....

Isn't Strasburg the guy who struggled in the CWS(I think)? I know there were some personality issues for awhile and for the talent he's shown at SDSU, I'm suprised no one even took a waiver on him out of high school.

Ryan Harvey hit 500 ft HR's.

The guy who has dominated international competition with two pitches that are 80's and a third that is expected to be a 70 is the Griffey, but 'Dunston' is probably selling Harper a little short. Maybe Mauer is a better comparison.

speaking of...Arolids Chapman is officially a FA.

wonder who wants to spend some serious loot giving the guy a MLB-paying contract.

Yeah I saw that the other day. I keep expecting that girl over at BP to give us some update on who is interested (well everyone is interested). Personally I would say stay away. 100 MPH left hander sounds great, but he just doesn't perform to match his stuff. If he were draft eligible, have at it, but he'll probably get at least $20 million. If you're paying that much for a guy, it's someone you should be able to put into your ML roster and he should be successful right away.

Ryan Harvey hit 500 ft HR's.

well I hope you know I meant more than just that...but in case you didn't.

The guy has more hype around him than any player since Griffey Jr. or maybe Arod. Now I didn't know much about him besides the juco transfer and the SI cover story. I just read about  5-10 articles on him though, some scouting sites, some news outlets and it all seems very justified. He's 16, so who knows, but there's no one who doesn't think he'd be the #1 prospect in just about any draft that I've read so far.

 The guy who has dominated international competition

was there more competion besides the Olympics in 2008? he beat up on Netherlands (I guess that's impressive), but only made it through 4 against Cuba and gave up 2 ER (3 total). 

Is it just the college pitcher vs. high school athlete thing? I think I'd take Harper if they were both in the same draft, just for fear of injury.

One part of it is that the Harper doesn't have anywhere to go but down thing.

How many major league starters throw 100 MPH into the 7th inning? How many major league hitters could hit 500 foot HR's with an aluminum bat?

There's a huge amount of hype around him, but part of that hype is because he's considered the #1 prospect the year after a ridiculous #1 prospect. It's "who's the next Strasburg?". Part of it is the fact that his parents have angled to get him into the draft as a high school junior. Take those two things away, and he's in the conversation to be the #1 draft pick, but not a gimee.

I don't know how many 500 foot HR's Mike Moustakis hit, but his HS numbers were better than this kid's, presumably against tougher competition - and he went #2 overall and is doing well, but not dominating.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2009/writers/jon_...

Soriano untradeable according to 2 GM's, and Z would be tough to move without kicking in salary. Lee, Lilly and Dempster might have more interest though (I say move all 3 and start rebuilding). Unless Ricketts is going to spend this offseason, it's gonna be a tough turnaround for 2010. If Cards can't sign Holliday or DeRosa and Cubs are healthier, that would work too, but that's not much of a plan.

Heyman suggests a San Diego reunion for Bradley.

Lee, Lilly and Dempster might have more interest though (I say move all 3 and start rebuilding).

doesn't the rebuilding need to begin with hendry himself? or, is he the guy you want in charge of re-making the team?

beyond that question, is, what ability has he shown at turning established/veteran players into newer/younger/better pieces? my recollections are of fire-saling sosa, latroy hawkins, and jacques jones while selling somewhat high on de rosa. no doubt my memory is selctive.

no snark, just asking, thanks for reading.

I have a Jekyll - Hyde attitude about Hendry. His moves have resulted in a very good core of players -- D Lee, Ramirez, specifically. Those trades were just absolute steals.

He had a spectacularly bad year this year, and that's what chaps my Hyde.

I don't even really fault him for the ridiculous Soriano contract because we all knew it was over the top but we were pretty happy with it when the league was throwing him more fastballs than they did this year. It was a roll of the dice, and Hendry lost. Because if the Cubs had won the world series last year it would have looked pretty good. Of course, I doubt he saw a fastball at all against the Dodgers, but, well, there maybe is the core problem with Hendry.

He doesn't seem to have a great handle on position player scouting. He's good with pitching, generally, although the addition of goggle boy was a curious one. Heilman doesn't seem so ridiculous, as he was actually fairly well thought of and for three years he had a pretty nice WHIP. Bullpens are hard to build so taking a chance on a guy like that doesn't seem too bizarre although I don't remember the contract terms. I'm sure Jimmy overpaid. He always does.

I'm kind of, today, in the camp of, he broke it, let's give him one more year to fix it. I just hope they serve Lou some Red Bull next year.

I'm all for Hendry's removal after this Bradley fiasco.

but if he were to take the leap of trading a year too soon, rather than a year too late...a leap he actually took with DeRosa. And despite all the hand-wringing about the move and the press missing their go-to interview, Hendry sold at the right time. DeRosa's having an off-year masked nicely by some decent RISP numbers and clutch hitting. Which is exactly why everyone was on his case when he was a Cub, for failing to come through in the playoffs.

but after the year Lee had and just one year on left on his deal, that's a nice windfall of prospects and salary relief they could get. I don't think Hoff/Fox would be as good at first base, but they could probably get Nick Johnson or Delgado on a cheap deal.  (Of course Lee has a NTC). Lilly and Dempster do as well, but a left-handed starter will always have suitors and the way Dempster finished, I'm sure he would as well. Could they trade some combination of those 3 and maybe add Fukudome in there and then turn around a make a deal for Halladay? Then have some serious salary relief to fill-in the other spots? 

it's probably going to have to take that kind of creativity to get back in it 2010...or stay healthy and hope the Cards take a step back next year.

Hendry's not afraid to make a deal, I'll give him that and until this year, he's been mostly good at it. Honestly, when it comes to trades, he's come out ahead far more often then behind. It's the FA contracts that are the death of him.

$140 million just don't buy what it used to.

...and i know it's not a mega-huge thing, but im still irked about wuertz-for-nothing trade. it became even worse once viz. got cut...not to mention the marquis aspect of that angle.

It was under the radar but it really was one of the wuertz trades ever.

Ya but he'll probably re-sign DeRosa to an NTC 3/44 contract.

i don't see how hendry could obtain both salary relief and prospects for lee, lilly, dempster, or even z. one or the other, but not both bodies and bucks.

i don't have recollection of every trade he's made. some were good: hill for ramirez, choi for lee, even hart for grabow and gorz was a plus. others, not so hot: 3 arms for pierre comes first to mind. and i am with you 100% that derosa for 3 indians was good.

my point was poorly made earlier: hendry has fairly decent history of converting cub "prospects" into veterans. aside from derosa, where has he been able to successfully move in the opposite direction? since that is what will be required (swap cub vets for other club's youth), how confident are you that hendry is the proper man for the task?

If you want to figure out who can be traded for something, ask this question. What would he get on the open market? If the player would get more years/money than he's making now, then he can be traded to get a similar player back - or just for prospects.

Lilly doesn't have a full NTC, and he could definitely be traded for prospects without any money leaving the Cubs.

Dempster probably has proved that last year wasn't a complete fluke, but he'd be right around a FA value with the remainder of his contract. He would get a middling prospect or a arb eligible guy that has some debate about whether or not he should be offered Arb.

Lee coming off his big year, like Lilly would be able to get something. The Red Sox would probably love to replace Lowell;s bat with Lee's for a year (for example).

Z would be tough. Were he a FA would he get a better offer than three years, $54 million? That's debatable to me. Personality issues aside he could probably a longer deal due to his age and his relative durability, but we're not the only ones who know Z's a bit of a head case.

The new owner isn't going to 'blow up' a team that's been as successful as recently as the Cubs have been, so it's a moot point anyway. Bradley, and maybe Lilly or Z are going to go, but I doubt any of the other big contracts are going anywhere. Hendry doesn't have the sense to trade when guys are at their peak value, so Lilly probably won't even be shopped.

What do you think Ricketts' posture is going to be as he/they take over the team? I'd like to believe that he is going to come in and want to make a splash; give the fans something to really be excited about. Of course, that will likely cost some money and he just spent $845 million.

I doubt if he's going to come in with all of the fanfare surrounding a new owner and immediately go cheap. I've got to believe he's going to want to do something exciting to show his commitment to bring the greatest fans in all of baseball the World Series championship they so richly deserve. Blah, blah, blah...

if he's smart, lower beer prices, that'll give 90% of the fans a talking point and put them on his side.

LCD/fireworks-exploding scoreboard and naming rights sold corporate... $180 million dollar payroll and a home World Series win at Spongetech.Com Field.

A big part of what he's going to do will depend on the actual finances of the team, which we don't know much about.

It's one thing having a $140 million payroll in a corporate division that is appreciating in sale value on a yearly basis.

It may be an entirely different thing having a $140 million payroll in a company that you just payed $.845 billion to acquire, which had a revenue of $171 million.

I doubt he is going to lower payroll, but just maintaining payroll will be a downgrade from the 2009 time, unless we get some really nice contributions from the minors.

I'm sure I'm in the minority by saying this. However pairing the payroll down to 130ish wouldn't bother me at all. Provided that

1. We would always stay at the 130 level
2. We spent a good portion of the saving on amature talent
3. We quit with the backloaded Peter/Paul contracts
4. We had a coherent plan in the future

i don't see how hendry could obtain both salary relief and prospects
for lee, lilly, dempster, or even z. one or the other, but not both
bodies and bucks.

there's nothing on the FA market this year, I think the Cubs could do well trading. Would they get all that money off the books plus get nothing but 5 and 4-star prospects? well of course not, but the Cubs for all their faults have done well at finding players in other organizations...

for example, let's say Giants decide they want Lee, maybe you can get Bumgarner and Sanchez(and I'm probably reaching a little high here) for them, but you have to cough up $4M of Lee's salary. There's $9M in savings or so.. Do that 2-3 times with Lilly, Dempster and/or Fukudome and you can maybe get Figgins, trade for Halladay with some of those prospects and get a cheap 1bmen and hopefully acquire a CFer or RFer in one of those deals...

I'm not advocating those players or those deals or even that plan, but I think those players are assets and could get a good return. Are they going to trade all of Dempster's deal and get 2-3 good minor leaguers, probably not...

speaking of their actual plan, I'm guessing it's trade Bradley, beg Ricketts for money to sign Figgins, maybe trade 1 of those 4 guys if they can and figure out the bullpen on the cheap once again...

cubs do have the tool of excess youth. hoff/fox/fuld are 3 guys who would be desirable to teams because of mlb-ready tools (even if not starting) who all have the upside of being starters...not to mention they will cost next to nothing for 3+ more years.

they're not blue-chips, but they're high-end bench players who are MLB-ready at worst.

be interesting to see how the existing contracts + youth will be used by trader jim this offseason.

You lost me at trade Dempster and Lilly and then get Halladay.

I think your actual plan may be accurate. I am in such an anti-Hendry mode that signing Figgins would seem like the perfectly logical, increase payroll but not really help the team move he'd make.

I don't think this is a fair evaluation of his season. DeRosa has been playing with a pretty serious wrist injury--he's going under the knife this winter--
that put him on the DL. And we all know what a bad wrist can do to a good hitter....see DLee.

And two weeks before he tore the tendon sheath on his wrist he injured his leg at Wrigley, if you recall, jamming it into the field telephone. At that time he was hitting .281 .353 .477 .

Maybe none of these injuries happen and he has a great season if he's not traded twice and stayed with the Cubs.

who own's the Padres these days? PT Barnum?

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=4504355

San Diego is different than Chicago," he said...

Padres GM Kevin Towers said Friday that he would be open-minded about discussing Bradley, who played 42 games with San Diego in 2007 before his blowing out his knee in an on-field altercation.

"I haven't had any calls from Jim about him," Towers told ESPN.com. "But I think people kind of know what players we target. We have to take chances sometimes. We took a chance on Milton the first time we had him, and he actually played pretty well [before the injury].

"We could be in the market for an outfielder. I'm not saying it's necessarily Milton. But our experience with him was rather a positive one. It wasn't really a negative one."

Don't complain. This kind of thinking should be encouraged, not discouraged. Because, despite my complaints about the Bradley piling on shit, it's clear he needs to be moved. Maybe we can trade him for Peav.... oh shit. Never mind.

"But I think people kind of know what players we target. We have to take chances sometimes.
---
Yeah, collect em all, first #22, then #21...

You're both an attorney and a gynecologist?!
---
Probably the first lawyer who has a speculum in his briefcase, but hopefully not the speculum in your briefs.

Tweetenmeyer: D-Lee-ted lineup vs. Lincecum: fuky (9), riot, rami, hoffp, baker, scalesy, hill, fuld (8), z.

as expected...buster posey gets the start tonight behind the plate for SF (and maybe the rest of the series).

Tyler Colvin, RIP?

Scalesy?

Scuse me while I upchuck

This game looks like a loss, Lous lineup of course Lee has his spasms again.
Giants 7
Cubs 2

More tweetenmeyer: Rami scratched. Sore shoulder. Fontenot to second. Baker to third.

Jake Fox, we hardly knew you.

I can't figure it out... are we trying to protect his value for trade by not exposing him, or ... well, that's the only possible reason for him not to play that I can think of. Maybe it's purely a match up thing?

Pinhead, we need to know if Fox is going to be a valuable player to us next year. Please play him.

he's in a slump recently and all, but im still trying to find the value in scales that makes him worth playing over hoff/fox/fuld...esp. when he's pretty much solely seeing time in LF this call-up.

Didn't Fox relieve the scaled one Sunday and hit the game winning HR?

yup...killer shot, too.

he's just been swinging/missing/not-seeing a lot of low off-speed stuff, esp. sliders.

i'd play him over scales as far as a regular goes, though...esp. in LF.

You're assuming that he puts Soriano in the lineup all the time because he doesn't care about outfield defense.

What I've been saying is that Soriano makes big bucks and has to play, for business reasons.

So if Fox doesn't play when Soriano is on the shelf, I conclude: a) Piniella does care about left-field defense, and b)Fox's itty-bitty contract does not compel the manager to play him.

Trade for JJ Hardy and Jeremy Hermida. Let Gregg and Heilman walk. Offer arbitration to Harden and let him walk. Offseason over.

Hermida is a poor man's Milton Bradley.

If Hendry does trade for him, I hope to god he waits until after arbitration is offered, because it's debatable whether Hermida is offered.

But this is Hendry we're talking about, so I don't even know why I wrote that.

I think you and I clashed on the Harden thing a while ago... the problem is (and I'm no expert on all this arbitration stuff) Harden would probably accept and then it's game over for the Cubs. I still think they won't even offer arbitration. Hendry should have dealt him when he had the chance.

If Harden does accept arbitration, you just beat him to death on his lack of innings and get him back at $8 million next year, then trade him in ST or May when some contender has their #2 go out with TJ surgery. Not really that much of a risk, considering the possible payoff (couple top 50 picks to spend on guys who look good in uniforms).

The hottest rumor among baseball scouts is that Pat Gillick will be returning to Toronto to become president of the club, but not GM.

does Ricketts have his phone number?

I'm still hoping Hendry can find a way to move Bradley and a pitcher (Z, Lilly, Dempster?) and bring back Halladay and the horrible contract of Vernon Wells. (Wells has apparently gotten hot the last few weeks)

It sounds good in theory, but then the Cubs would have two of the worst, most untradeable contracts in all of baseball (Soriano and Wells). That can't be good.

well Bradley and prospects (lots and lots of prospects) for Wells and Halladay maybe...

if they're moving Halladay, they're obviously rebuilding meaning Z, Lilly or Dempster aren't going to be of much interest. 

But adding Wells would be up to Ricketts basically....

I'm not the stat freak some of you are but this looks ok to me:

http://www.fangraphs.com/statss.aspx?playerid=1326...

Plus, I've seen him play a few times on the Tee Vee and I kinda dug him there, too.

I can't quite figure out how old he is (he was born in 78) cuz my brain is a creative side but I suspect he's got a few left, unless his knees are gone.

Off topic -- anything non Bradley is of course -- but if you can watch the game on mlb.tv Mike Krukow is really fun to listen to. For one thing, he's knowledgeable, and he just can't let his Cubbiness not come out. He's a bit of a homer when the Cubs aren't playing, but when the Cubs are playing them he is fun to listen to. I lived in SF for 6 years and enjoyed the hell out of the guy.

This lineup sucks.

clashed on the Harden thing...
---
Anyone have some insight as to how Donaldson's season went wrt development? How about catching skills or is he really a 1B/DH.

looking up some stats:

Josh Donaldson 2009 season. Age 23. AA/Midland

455AB 123H 9HR 91RBI 80BB 92K

.270 .379 .415 .794

That's really amazing. How can that guy get 550 PA's in the Texas League and not hit 10 HR's?

almost as amazing as having 91 RBI's and just 9 HR's...guess he has what the kids call gap power?

Donaldson also hit 37 doubles. And 102 of his 126 starts were at catcher. Of the rest, 15 were at 3B, not 1B/DH.

better than the lineup vs Lincecum on May 5th? I remember many comments that Lou was giving that one away

here's ugly Betty...

Gatheright (8), Miles (6), Fuku (9), DLee, Hoffpauir (7), Fontenut (5), Scales (4), KHill and Marshall

apparently Lou considers Scales is the universal equilizer against Lincecum although the Cinco de Mayo game was Scales mlb debut

http://www.thecubreporter.com/2009/05/05/lou-cashe...

#50

You are exactly right Harden should have been gone at the deadline ,Hendry should have got what he could I dont think it got close to happening but it would be
interesting for us to see what minnesota was offering.

I don't blame Hendry at all for not moving Harden at the deadline. It seems like so long ago, but at the deadline the Cubs were .5 game back, 7 games over .500 and had won 7 of their last 10.

Hendry, like many, probably believed that Cubs were about the get healthy for the first time in 2009 and start the march to their third straight division title. Harden was certainly a necessary cog in that plan.

As far as Minnesota's waiver claim, it was merely a block with no real intention of dealing for Harden.

As long as Hendry offers Harden arbitration, I think he has played this one right. Hendry deserves plenty of blame in other endeavors, but in my mind his handling of the Harden situation was acceptable.

I think that "deadline" in this case meant the post-season deadline rather than the non-waiver trade deadline.

It's still hard to believe no team in the NL put a claim on Harden. These are teams with Brad Penny, Jon Garland and Jose Contreras in their rotations.

TRN - I referred to both deadlines in my previous post. I simply suggested that Minnesota placed a claim on Harden, in my opinion, as a block to other potential playoff teams. By all accounts, they made little, if any, effort to swing a deal for Harden. So, it's tough to skewer Hendry for not dealing Harden at the Aug 31 deadline when the only team they could trade him to wasn't interested.

As I mentioned, we can blame Hendry for a lot of things, but a failure to deal Harden at either deadline, unless you could foresee the August collapse, isn't one of them.

Post #55 referred to the Aug 30th deadline, not the July 31st deadline, therefore the position in the standings on July 31st has no relevance.

However, we were still in contention on August 30th.

If Hendry does not offer arbitration to Harden, then perhaps he should have let MN have him and saved whatever, $1.5 million.

Neal, I realize you love to argue, but I believe your concept of relevance is in error.

Post #55 was less than clear regarding which "deadline" was being referenced. On one hand, it appeared to reference the Aug 31 deadline as it referred to the Minnesota waiver claim.

However, on the other hand, it appeared to reference the July 31 deadline as it stated "Hendry should have got what he could". One of the points of my previous post was that Hendry couldn't have gotten anything at the Aug 31 deadline as Minnesota claimed Harden only as a block. I have not seen any reports to suggest there was even a single offer from Minesotta. So, it's reasonable to assume the writer may have been referencing the earlier deadline in which Hendry could have traded Harden and "got what he could". Had the poster suggested that we let Harden go to save some cash, it would have been clear which deadline he was referencing.

Due to the ambiguity, I elected to address both "deadlines" and the reasons why Hendry handled both situations appropriately. In addressing Hendry's actions at the "trade" deadline, it is absolutely necessary to look at the standings to determine whether he made the correct move. I used the standings to suggest that the decision not to deal Harden appeared correct, in light of the Cubs' aspirations of another division title. Clearly, it's relevant to look at the standings at that particular time in judging past actions of the GM.

Regarding the August 31 deadline, to suggest the Cubs were still in contention at that time is a bit disingenuous! On August 31, the Cubs had fallen to 10.5 games back in the Central and 6 games back in the Wild Card (behind 4 teams). They were coming off an 11-17 August and the outlook was substantially changed from the beginning of August until the end. Once again, the standings become relevant in analyzing Hendry's actions. The Cubs appeared to be much less of a contender at the end of August and no one would have questioned Hendry for moving Harden if a decent offer was extended.

Alas, back to the original point, Hendry couldn't get anything for Harden at the Aug 31 deadline. Minnesota simply wasn't interested in dealing. They were only interested in protecting their faint playoff hopes by strategically placing a claim on Harden. So, fwiw, I don't fault Hendry in his handling of the Harden situation. This post and others, offer relevant support for that opinion. If you disagree, so be it.

Alas, back to the original point, Hendry couldn't get anything for Harden at the Aug 31 deadline. Minnesota simply wasn't interested in dealing.

You don't know that, by the way, it's just speculation. The Twins may very well have offered the Cubs something for Harden, which the Cubs would have thought was not worth the value of having Harden the rest of the year and the possibility of getting two picks for him in the off-season.

All we know is that the Cubs didn't get enough of what they were looking for - not that they weren't offered anything.

Has anyone else noticed that Brenley REALLY likes K Hill?

Re: #54

I know, right? Scales is so terrible (.250/.317/.426). Plus he's such a jerk. That's what he is, an expensive, cocky, under-performing jerk. But no, you say anything bad about Scales and you are all of a sudden a racist.

They should just let Milton Bradley (.257/.378/.397) play the rest of the season, instead. At least that's a guy we can all get behind.

You can keep your feel good stories and your minor league journeymen to yourself. It sure felt good when he handed the Cardinals wins in back-to-back games with his defense in left, didn't it?

Dude, I'm agreeing with you. Milton Bradley would be way better. .007 batting average points better, actually. Right on. Plus, he seems like a good guy.

Milton Bradley would be way better. .007 batting average points better, actually.

People still use batting average as a way to judge players?

Come on Ryno... do you really think that Bobby Scales is anywhere close to the level of Bradley? You have to be kidding me.

Is it that he really likes K Hill or that he dislikes G.Soto?

This is sad. Was watching the Orioles/Indians game. Felix stretched his left leg trying to beat out a double play ball and apparently tore his left quad. He took another step and just collapsed on the ground. The announcers described it as looking like his leg fell off. After several minutes, FP had to be carried off the field. He could not put any weight on his left leg.

http://www.usatoday.com/sports/baseball/al/2009-09...

bummer. I'm gonna fire up that game now.

If anyone has some time next week to bombard the test site comments and check it out at a scheduled time, let me know.

New post: Blah blah blah blah Milton Bradley blah blah blah blah blah.

Discuss.

fwiw, the cubs are playing some fun-to-watch baseball down the stretch. even those 2 losses to STL in the last series were fun games.

cubs offseason is almost here. get it while you can.

Just reading the comments above I get the feeling no one else has seen the reports from writers like Jay Mariotti and others that Ricketts wants to pare the payroll down to $100 million.

I don't know that it's true but that's what they're saying.

news to me...link it up if you got it handy.

http://jay-mariotti.fanhouse.com/2009/09/21/hendry...

Yet shouldn't Hendry (right) whose every offseason move backfired woefully, be sent on his way right behind Bradley? With a new owner finally in place in Tom Ricketts, who hopes to pare a $140 million payroll by $40 million and create some semblance of a farm system, the time is right for a new front-office boss with fresh ideas to tackle the toughest job in baseball.

(shrug), it being Mariotti I believe none of it, if there's another link I'd love to see it.

damn...given how this team is constructed i sure as hell hope that isn't soon...or at least 2010/2012-ish soon.

this team isn't designed to "let the kids play" and guys that are fringy like theriot are due to get raises as the next few years progress.

8 shutout innings, RBI on a FC's that he hustled down the line on, then lined a single off Randy Johnson that LF'er played into a double.

CG possiblity looms...

-edit- guess the scorer was feeling friendly tonight, Z got credit for a double and RBI in the 9th...sure.

The Scaled one was playing left field for both teams?

Something interesting to look at when someone has time would be Z against aces and good teams compared to Z against crap teams.

I'd also love to see his numbers when pitching with a lead versus pitching in a tie or behind. It seems like he's got the most blown wins on the staff, but maybe I am blowing those out of proportion because they're just so gosh darn fun to watch. When he got the 1 run lead tonight I was actually surprised he didn't cough it up the next inning.

First full CG of the year, we stave off Central elimination for one more night, though our miniscule playoff chances actually needed the Cardinals to win.

Z was magnificent. Velocity, movement, command, focus. The Giants lineup was weak tonight. He had a good fastball and dominated. 98 pitches, 2 hits, 1 BB, 8K.

Pseudo GM, 'Sully my reputation' pulls out the two martini cocktail napkin and draws up a trade. Aaron Rowand for Bradley, 3/36 vs 2/21. I wish he'd please use the napkin on that blue cheese dribbling down his chin. That would make 3 Aaron's, 1 Moses...shouldn't the counter move really be a Ramses II?
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http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/cubs...

If the Cubs want to swap bad contracts, as they did in the Hundley deal, the Giants may be Hendry's best option. Center fielder Aaron Rowand has not put up the kind of numbers expected in San Francisco and has three years remaining for $36 million.

Rowand is two years removed from a 27-homer, 89-RBI season for the Phillies and would be a good fit in the Cubs clubhouse.

"Cubs fans would fall in love with him, for sure," Cubs outfielder Reed Johnson said. "He did well on the other side of town, and I know people ... appreciate the way he plays the game."

Like Bradley, Rowand is having an off-year offensively, and his power numbers have gone down in spacious AT & T Park. Entering Friday night, he had 63 RBIs with 15 home runs and 30 doubles.

"But he takes responsibility for stuff," Johnson said. "If you ask him, he'll tell you he could be playing better than he is now. But this is a tough park to put up power numbers. If he went to a place like Wrigley, he'd be like he was in Philly."

Drawing a complete blank. When did these guys play together?

Also how much did Milton get for selling Reed's baby?

"But he takes responsibility for stuff," Johnson said.
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getting my flashlight out to see if we can find Milton under the bus

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/9/93...

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