Cubs Rumor Round-Up: Bradley 3-Way, Chapman & More
All Milton, all the time...
- Foxsports's rumor mongering robot Robothal is hearing talks about a 3-way trade of Milton Bradley to the Blue Jays, Lyle Overbay to the Mets and Luis Castillo to the Cubs.
The three-team possibility, according to one source, has "some legs,
but not much." The Jays are opposed to the deal, one source says —
perhaps because new GM Alex Anthopolous does not want a trade for
Bradley to be his first major move.
Castillo is owed $6M each of the next two seasons, will be 34 next year has piss-poor UZR and Rate2 numbers the last few seasons and was the proud owner of a .337 wOBA(barely above average) last season thanks mostly to a .342 BABIP which isn't something he's shown he can repeat too often. So that's exciting...
But if the Cubs can indeed move the $21M owed Bradley for the $12M owed Castillo, well that becomes a no-brainer for the Cubs. Chances are they'll have to throw some cash which spins me right back to the not so exciting camp.
The same article says the Rays have been the heaviest pursuers of Bradley mentioning Pat Burrell again. Their salaries even out in 2010 according to Robothal, but Rays want Cubs to pay most of 2011 to relieve them of their headache.
- Bruce Levine chimed in earlier saying the Cubs have talked with Mets, Blue Jays, Rangers, Rays and Angels about Bradley. Levine reiterates that Rich Harden and Kevin Gregg are as good as gone, Cubs would like to resign John Grabow and Reed Johnson could be welcome back if he accepts a one year deal. He says the Cubs priorities are bullpen help, a leadoff hitter, center field and a veteran middle infielder...like Luis Castillo for example.
- Bruce Miles talked to Carlos Zambrano's agent and said he hasn't been approached about waving any no-trade clauses and thinks it's a "non-story". Talk with Hendry included glowing praise of Starlin Castro and that a deal for Bradley isn't close.
- For what it's worth, which isn't much...Billy Williams would like to salvage the Milton Bradley situation in Chicago.
- Finally, the Cubs did inquire about the Cuban lefty fireballer Aroldis Chapman, but "seem to be going in other, cheaper directions"
Otherwise, be sure you don't miss Arizona Phil's Top 15 prospect list for something with some substance over this rumor mongering.
This might be old news but Hammel was on ESPN 1000 and said that he changed his diet and workout routine over the off season and tweaked his delivery so it'd be more repeatable so he'd have a better second half. So...some cause for optimism anyway.
CHILDERS: RHSP Dylan Cease and LHSP Bryan Hudson are probably the top two SP prospects in the organization right now.
LHSP Jose Paulino has electric stuff (91-94 MPH fastball with sinking action and a mid-80's slider), but he also has trouble commanding it.
RHP Jose Albertos (2015 IFA - Mexico - $1.5M bonus) just turned 17 in November, and his fastball already sits at 95-96. He also throws a curve and a change-up, and is fairly advanced for a kid his age.
AZBOBBOP: Most of 2016 draft picks will get assigned to either Eugene or AZL Cubs, but the Opening Day Eugune roster will probably be almost 100% from the Extended Spring Training squad roster (pending the arrival of draft picks).
I think I can probably tell you which pitchers and players at EXST are in contention for roster slots at Eugene and which are in contention for slots with the AZL Cubs - AS THINGS STAND RIGHT NOW - (listed alphabetically):
* bats or throws left
# bats both
Eloy Jimenez atop the leader board for minor-league home runs in the Cub system, with seven. Tied with Balaguert and Vogelbach, two 24-year-olds. Jimenez won't be 20 until late November. Leads the Midwest League in SLG and OPS. Maybe he'll get promoted to the Myrtle Beach squad that visits Woodbridge, VA, in June or Frederick, MD, in August.
Watched two Pelican games at Frederick the other week. Was most impressed by Stinnett and Happ. Happ may swing harder than Javier Baez, though more compactly. (Also got to see Brockmeyer hit a bomb.)
E-MAN: Jose Paniagua isn't a string-bean, but I wouldn't say he necessarily bulked-up during the 2015-16 off-season either, He led the DSL Cubs in HR and doubles in 2014, and he showed XBH power when he arrived in Mesa last year, leading the AZL Cubs in HR, doubles, and RBI in 2015. It's just that he has taken his HR power to a new level this year.
Paniagua displayed plus-HR power in Cactus League Minor League Spring Training games in March, and that got him a slot on the South Bend Opening Day roster. But he was sent to EXST after only six MWL games.
More on the Cub Way.
Martinez is one of my least favorite pitchers in baseball. I'd love to see a game like yesterday's against him.
Send Soler down!
Awesome thanks AZ
Great report, Phil! This organization has so many hitters to be excited about.
Ben Zobrist is very enjoyable to watch!!!!!!
given that he seems to only be throwing low 90s these days rather than the 93-96mph he used to throw, along with his wildness issues this year, he may end up passing through.
i dunno if something is wrong with him physically or his past shoulder issues has rendered him what he currently is, but he's been throwing a lot of sliders he can't control well and his fastball isn't as sharp. even when his slider wasn't working in a game he was still throwing a lot of them.
Any scuttlebutt on where Neil Ramirez gets traded?
He seems better than some of the relievers on competitive teams. He ought to bring more than the waiver fee.
My guess? Toronto.
PHIL: It seems as if Paniagua has always played 1B with the Cubs. At 6'2 and 180#, what is his frame like? String bean? Have you seen him bulk up? Where do you project him? Thanks.
Phil, what's your thoughts on which position players are going to Eugene and who is staying in AZL?
Ahhh...way to bring me down BB.
Still - a win tomorrow will be an acheivement regardless.
Don't mean to spoil your mood, but with tonight's win the are 3-5 on the trip with one to play.
While I'm bringing the room down -- Richard comes in to pitch the 9th with a 12-1 lead...and can't finish the game. Woof.