TCR Afternoon Notes
Alright, here's my half-ass plan for the next few weeks...try to get one of those offseason target posts up sometime in the morning and then some type of quick notes/news of the moment update in the afternoon or early evening if there's enough news out there and if Phil doesn't have an update from Arizona. I will inevitably fail at keeping up that pace...
- Naples, Florida is making their run at the Cubs to be their new home for spring training.
The Cubs’ 25-year lease with the city of Mesa expires in 2016. However,
the team has an escape clause, allowing them to pay $4.2 million to the
city next spring in order to leave Mesa in 2012.
That's a pretty well-done and detailed article at the link, so I encourage everyone to check it out. I will say while it's probably better for many Chicago residents, who I know would prefer the shorter trip to Florida, it would likely mean the demise of Arizona Phil here at TCR, so suck it up and write a letter to Ricketts that you want the Cubs to stay in Arizona.
- Things are going well for Jeff Samardzija in Winter Ball....
gave up four runs, five hits, and four walks over five innings in Mexicali's 9-4 win over Navojoa on Sunday
- Tony LaRussa and Dave Duncan will be back next year for the Cardinals and LaRussa is dragging Mark McGwire back with him as their new hitting coach. It's the holy coaching trinity of cheaters...
- Speaking of managers, Manny Acta will helm the Cleveland Indians for the next three years, but only because the Astros have some odd policy of not going past two years on a manager contract. Rob Neyer rightfully takes the Astros to task for their odd line in the sand. David Clark, Phil Garner or Red Sox bench coach Brad Mills seem to be the final candidates now.
- Neyer is on fire today, taking on a Mike Celizic article that goes after Joe Giradi for overmanaging...
...For the most part, at this time of the year all a manager
can do is wind up his players and send them off to battle like little
tin soldiers. Maybe Girardi really has been guilty of overmanaging; if
so, he's overmanaged his team to the World Series and lost only two
games along the way. I suspect that a lot of teams would love to be
overmanaged so well.
Similarly, it would make no more sense to move Chone Figgins down this month than for Larry Dierker to have moved Craig Biggio and Jeff Bagwell down, amid all their October struggles. Or to have moved Willie Mays down, or Joe Morgan. All of these brilliant players struggled in October, and their managers did what you have to do with struggling superstars: leave them alone and hope for the best.
Well not sure about Chone Figgins being a superstar, but you get the point.
- After failing miserably on my NLDS choices, I did better when I re-picked at the LCS games (sorry, can't find the link but I had Phillies in 6 and Yankees in 7) and I did pick the Yankees from the beginning. I know, that's a helluva a limb a climbed out on. Of course, it was a sad evening in the G family household last night as the Angel Fan Wife was visibly distraught after the Angels case of the yips last night in the 8th inning. I'll stick with the Yankees of course for the World Series, I say 6 games.
- Be sure to check out the right sidebar for payroll, minor league free agent and Rule 5 info courtesy of the aforementioned Arizona Phil.
Unfortunately, a pretty good summary. It looks like next year Heyward will be getting yet another batting stance adjustment.
The recent good news has been Baez. I'm afraid about the next league adjustment on him, though, which is probably right around the corner.
Bryant I don't worry about too much. Just not seeing the ball well right now. He'll turn it around. Russell's been good with men in scoring position all year and he's 22ish. He'll be fine but next year is likely to be his breakout year.
If Travis' back-to-back-to-back walks cost Hendricks the ERA title, that would really suck.
Edit: "A lifeless loss to a lousy Sox team."
This place is a real downer after a loss to the Sox.
I expect they will go 5-9 games above .500 the rest of the year. 96-98 wins will win the Division.
They should have one more 2-3 week hot streak in them.
However, several players are just "average" for the last month: Zobrist, Ross, Russell, Ceasar. Montero is terrible, plus he cannot throw anyone out. -WAR. Heyward is abysmal at the plate, but a plus in the OF. Still with RISP he has been terrible. KB has not been driving in runs as of late. But Apparently the team is still above average with RISP according to S Sahadev.
I came to that realization tonight. I kept expecting them to play better, but now I realize they aren't going to. They are a .500 team now.
- They have one reliable starting pitcher. Jake's magic is gone, and it doesn't look like it's coming back. Lester has been lousy recently. Lackey's ERA goes up every time he pitches.
- Heyward has been dead weight all year. I can't remember a single series where he was a significant offensive contributor. Not one. Great defense, but but if he were hitting .270 with 10 HR and played average defense, the Cubs would be better off.
new rule...no one's allowed to throw k.bryant a changeup
Team is .500 since early May and is playing like a .500 team. Lack of offense seems to be putting a lot of pressure on the pitchers...and they aren't handling it terribly well.
.500 the rest of the way still may win the division though.
...i hate espn.
nothing like settling into a cubs game to get a few minutes cutaway for an ortiz AB in the 6th inning of the det/bos game.
oh, at least they're doing split screen now...i guess.
I'm liking this rookie Nathan.
Richard DFA'd. Meh...
Throwbacks with fashionable cutouts would be a nice touch.
The next 2 games are nationally televised. I think we dominate tonight, hitting 3 HRs off Shields. Great night for KB to end HR drought facing HR prone pitcher in one of the most hitter friendly parks in the league.
If the ball didn't deflect off the pitcher's mound, the game wouldn't have ended. Montgomery did miss his location though, but if that same contact was made and went in any of direction, good chance of ground out if it doesn't get through.
If it was 1 night later, Chapman would be out there and we probably would be going to extras.
Also, If KB wasn't robbed of a HR, perhaps we would have won. We will never know. Nice play by Melky though.
The comparison isn't Chapman replacing Rondon. It's Chapman replacing Richard (hopefully) in the pen. Chapman's better.
I'm with you, Rob. You pretty much summed up how I feel about it.