Cubs Rumor Round-Up: Rafael Soriano, Mike Gonzalez, Cameron & More

- Assuming the package of Cubs prospects that Hendry is willing to offer isn't enough to pry Curtis Granderson from the Tigers, the Cubs may move on to signing Mike Cameron as their main focus. First, the Cubs will have to move Milton Bradley of course and then they could look to sign the 36, going on 37-year old center fielder. Lou raves about him and Cameron raves about Lou in the article, so chances are he won't end up in Lou's doghouse by April.

- He said, she said: Jon Heyman say the Cubs aren't close to dealing Bradley because they're only willing to eat up to $5M of his contract, but Will Carroll tweeted around 8pm CST last night that:

Cubs signing of Mike Cameron is waiting on deal of Milton Bradley, which has been "imminent" for about 72 hours.

- More on Cameron from the Tribune, and thoughts that Tampa Bay and Texas are the most likeliest landing spots for Bradley.

"For some guys it's a gift," Cameron, who played for Piniella in
Seattle from 2000 to '02, told the Tribune in '07 of playing for
Piniella. "And for some guys it's a curse. I've seen both sides of the
fence. For me, it was a blessing. It made me the player I am today. He
taught me a lot about the game, and he's one of the ultimate field
generals, probably the best manager I've ever had."

I covered Cameron earlier in the offseason, and the Cubs would get a decent but aging bat that drove in 10.7% of the runners in front of him last year (Not good, basically Bradley territory). He did much better in past years driving in runs and still seems to have the defensive chops to cover center field with the best of them. At 37 though, it should be a one year deal with maybe a 2nd year option, but I guess he gets more if Hendry is involved.

- The Cubs popped up on a list of suitors for Rafael Soriano and Mike Gonzalez. Both were offered arbitration by the Braves and would cost the Cubs a 2nd round pick as the Cubs first round pick is protected this year. They'll have to move fast though as the deadline to accept or decline arbitration is Monday and at least in Soriano's case, they want to know what kind of offers are out there or they'll take up the Braves on arbitration.

- Bruce Miles has a Winter Meeting preview up, saying a right-handed outfielder compliment to Fukudome is on the agenda (assuming they move Bradley). That puts guys like David DeJesus and Rick Ankiel down on the Cubs wish list. Also mentions Texas and Tampa as the most likely spots for Bradley and if the Cubs do have to then move someone like Burrell, a three-team trade doesn't have to happen immediately. Also, expect a vet right-handed bullpen guy to be signed at some point.

- Lou doesn't rule out returning for 2011. Joy.

- Baseball Analysts covers "The Problematic Cubs Outfielder".

Thanks to everyone who discovered most of those links for me...

Comments

More stuff

Jon Heyman on Milton Bradley trade, Will Carroll on Mike Cameron signing with the Cubs...

http://www.thecubreporter.com/2009/12/04/cubs...

thanks

You will notice in the Lou article,he does not guarantee to stay awake if he manages in 2011.

Cubs 1st rounder isn't protected. Only top 15 are.

The Cubs pick is protected because the 15th pick was a compensatory pick for the Rangers failing to sign Purke last year, and I don't believe compensatory picks are considered in regards to which picks are protected. As such, the next pick, I'm almost certain, is protected.

Not sure how that works?

Paging Az Phil

It's not the Cubs fault that the Rangers received that pick. I can't quote the rule but it would be shocking to me to see anything that contradicts toons' logic.

more confirmation if you need it

http://www.baseballamerica.com/today/prospect...

top 50%, it's protected

Rob, what's with the love fest for the word "though"?

plenty of Cubs blogs that don't use though or ellipses if you want...

but I wrote this and had to take off before taking a 2nd and 3rd pass at it...

ohhhhhh.

It's a California thing.

Buried at the bottom of the Lou might return for 2011 article is this line:

"Piniella also said he has told Hendry he would like to add a middle-of-the-rotation starter, but that appears to be a long shot as the Cubs head to the meetings."

Also on Lou's list:

1. Lefty hitting corner outfield power bat
2. Lefty hitting backup catcher
3. 2 bullpen lefties
4. Latin backup infielder
5. Lefty batting practice pitcher
6. No more Milton

And, no more Aarons.

He must feel Hendry used an aaron judgment last year.

You forgot about speed and or athleticism.

Thank God for the Hawks....

Some snips from Joe Sheehan's run down of NL Needs at the Winter Meetings. A pretty good piece, and I think Sheehan is probably BP's best writer.

Cubs: they need to have a better offseason with respect to roster spots eight through 25 than Hendry has had the last few years

Cards: had tremendous run prevention in 2009, numbers that are almost sure to regress, so they have got to put a better offense on the field than they did to prevent a massive step backwards

Brewers: It may be that the only way for them to break out of the 78-84 win range is to trade Fielder

Reds: The ideal Reds week would include trades of Francisco Cordero and Arroyo, not for financial reasons but to add a major-league shortstop and center fielder.

Astros: We’re pretty close to what’s been coming for a while, which is a top-to-bottom rebuilding of the Astros that takes about four years.

Pirates: Look for the Pirates to troll the low end of the market, major-league free agents at low cost, non-tenders, minor-league free agents

Marlins: The Marlins remain a blight on the MLB landscape

Hope that's not too much.

http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php...

marlins...the new expos...all the talent in the world, but they can't keep anyone after they "break them in" longer than a few years.

well, that and a couple of rings...wtf

The Expos weren't getting $30 million a year in revenue sharing, which was the point of the comment. I maybe should have put a bit more, but trying not to stomp on their copyright too much.

fun fact...the ex-expos owner owns the marlins.

revenue sharing doesn't work. they wanted (well, the yanks didn't want it at all for obvious reasons) unregulated use of the money and this kind of stuff tends to happen in that environment. the rich get richer because why do something you don't have to do unless you WANT to do it. the only incentive for putting money back into the field product right now would be if loria wanted a ring, and that's about it. both desires would be selfish, but one at least serves the fans (btw, thanks for the effort zell...140m, damn).

the marlins are valued at over 100m bucks more than they were bought for.

they use the "new stadium" thing as an excuse...it's getting a little thin when they're spending less or barely more than they get in revenue sharing.

Which explains why their value is going up. Were I Loria I'd probably do the same thing until the other owners and players forced me to stop.

I would guess that they'll open the purse strings a bit when they move to the new stadium even if there's no change to the collective bargaining agreement, simply because they'd feel like they could make more money by spending an extra $20 million to bring in an additional 2 million fans every year.

Very interesting and free interview with Jeam Beattie over at BP. I think Loria was his owner, and he details a bit how the Expos were cutting spending across the board in his latter days.

http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php...

nice interview. it's great some of these "legit" baseball guys are opening up to internet/blog/etc. reporters more and more these days with more than just a blurb or two.

Submitted by Dr. aaron b on Sun, 12/06/2009 - 12:19pm.
Not sure how that works?

Paging Az Phil

==============================

DR AARON B: The 1st round draft picks of the 15 MLB clubs with the worst records from the previous season are protected.

Rule 4 compensation draft picks clubs get for not signing 1st, 2nd, or 3rd round picks are special picks that don't count as far as MLB free-agent compensation is concerned.

Also, a special Rule 4 compensation pick is only good for one year. If a club selects a player with a special Rule 4 compensation pick and doesn't sign that player either, the club doesn't get another compensation pick the next year as compensation for not signing that player.

speaking of troubled players...

anyone know if matt "i'm matt f'n bush" bush (SD/TOR(kinda)) is done being a drunk loser and trying to play again?

before his elbow fell off in 07 (and had to take 08 off) he was featuring a low 90s fastball. his hitting days are definitely done.

i don't think he played organized baseball last year unless his rehab center had one.

mlbtraderumors.com has their second link of the weekend about Soriano possibly accepting arbitration from the Braves. I would think that would increase the pressure to trade one of their starters. Hopefully Hendry will be standing in the right place with some glowing scouting reports on Milton Bradley when that happens.

it's not official, but it seems the worst kept secret in baseball right now is mike cameron is gonna be the cubs big bat addition by subtraction for 2010.

i hope it's a 1-year deal...or a cheap 2-year.

Just like last year when the Bradley deal was held up by unloading part of Marquis's contract. Hopefully, now that someone is actually watching Hendry this will be a black mark on his record.

Odds of it being cheap and short aren't too good, not this early in the season. He's going to see Figgins and Polanco's deals and that's not going to work out to a 1-year deal in Cameron and his agent's minds.

Not a big fan of this one. I think a big part of his alleged defensive chops are a function of him taking catches from his corner outfielders. Not that that will be a huge problem in Wrigley, but if you can win 97 games with Edmonds/Johnson as your CF you'll probably be fine with Fukudome and some non-tendered pickup.

Right handed pitchers with power stuff are going to cruise through our lineup setting season highs for K's on a weekly basis.

It's just a signing that doesn't make us better, and spends a lot of money in a market where having money can get some nice depth.

Agreed,

Hendry will be much better served to hold onto his cash and bargain hunt in Feb/March

Hopefully he isn't planning on backloading this deal and hampering the 2010/2011 offseasons.

Paul Sullivan has a nice bit about Tampa Bay's manager Joe Maddon. Maddon believes that he would get along with Milton, as evidenced by a lunch he had with him last winter. Milton was a free agent trying to find $'s. I think he would get along with anybody that was offering multi million dollar contracts. Now, it is interesting if Tampa Bay departs with Burrell, whom the Rays are dissappointed with. Binding the Cubs pick up most of the money owed to Bradley next year, the risk for the Rays is limited and less pressure is on Milton to perform. His contract my be big, but the financial obligation from Tampa Bay would be minimal similar to the fan base. All in all, it probably would be a good fit for Tampa Bay and we would probably see Milton Bradley return to Texas form. At least this way he will not have any fans in the stands to throw the ball to with 2 outs (granted he sees playing time in the outfield).

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  • Not sure I agree with this logic. The Cubs are one of the best teams in baseball, they have spent heavily on the team over the past couple of seasons, have more hitting prospects than they have places for them to play (and more on the way), a clear weakness in the bullpen, and have a 1.5 year window with Arrieta (to say nothing of the likely declines of Lester and Lackey).

    Unless you think (maybe even if you do think) Schwarber is the next coming of Babe Ruth, I would certainly consider trading him if it brought back a couple of the best relief pitchers in baseball.

    Rob Richardson 24 min 35 sec ago view
  • Miggy was going to sit anyway with Lester starting.

    In related news, do any of the Cubs pitchers want to throw to Contreras?

    Rob G. 36 min 44 sec ago view
  • Only Russell and Miggy failed to reach base yesterday. Both sit today.

    billybucks 45 min 15 sec ago view
  • Trading Schwarber actually makes a lot of sense because his actual position is currently being taken by Anthony Rizzo, unless they vote in the DH this offseason.

    Trading him for a reliever is never going to happen though. I don't think you can trade Schwarber unless you get a CF'er for a few years (presume Fowler finds his multi-year deal next offseson) or a couple of high end young starters...or an established starter...a good one like Chris Sale.

    Rob G. 56 min 37 sec ago view
  • I don't see what the Yanks have that the Cubs need.

    Ryno 1 hour 1 min ago view
  • peter gammons on MLB network pushing the yanks/schwarber angle...says insiders from the yanks say brian cashman highly covets him.

    unless that conversation starts with a.miller (2/18m left on contract) i dunno how you even start that conversation given the "not trash, but no stars" state of the yanks minor league system.

    they got corner OF'r aaron judge, C gary sanchez, RHP james kaprielian's questionable elbow, RHP domingo acevedo...all interesting, none expected to impact the game like schwarber's power potential.

    crunch 1 hour 34 min ago view
  • Zo, Heyward, KB, Riz, Contreras (LF), Baez (SS), Szczur (CF), Ross, Lester

    Cubster 1 hour 42 min ago view
  • damn. low sample size blah blah whatever, but that slash got sneaky good. 10 hits, 4 walks, 2hr, 1 double through 39 PA...nice

    crunch 2 hours 2 min ago view
  • Buddy Ryan takes his place alongside George Allen as the great Bear head coaches who never were.

    VirginiaPhil 4 hours 57 min ago view
  • Well, at least he can still hit: Jake slashing .294/.368/.868. Forget hitting 8th -- he should hit 6th.

    billybucks 5 hours 15 min ago view
  • Curious to see today's lineup vs. a LHP: Ross needs to catch Lester, Joe likes Javy at 3B when Lester pitches. Heyward with back-to-back good games at the plate, and is actually hitting a little better against LHP (.247/.341) than RHP (.232/.321), although neither is much to write home about. But, tomorrow is an early day game, so some regulars will probably sit either today or tomorrow.

    Maybe Willson in LF, KB in RF and Almora in CF? If so, Albert Jr., assume every ball is yours.

    billybucks 5 hours 20 min ago view
  • "Pitching prospects not looking so hot"

    That reminds me that Lucas Giolito will start for the Nats tonight.

    VirginiaPhil 5 hours 23 min ago view
  • Well, there you go. Federowicz is one of the best at balls in the dirt.

    VirginiaPhil 5 hours 42 min ago view
  • Reds pitching meeting tomorrow:

    "Hey coach...maybe we should walk Bryant?"
    "No...keep challenging him with fastballs! What kind of man are you?! The Cubs walked Harper, and look what happened there! They got teased for it, by one of the Nat players! Is that what you want?"

    billybucks 16 hours 24 min ago view
  • How can I get that feature? I think it woudl be a win-win for all involved.

    billybucks 16 hours 28 min ago view
  • Ian Happ is hitting.733 after 5 games at Tennessee. He went into tonight's game hitting .667 -- and went 3-for-3 to raise his average.

    2-for-3, including a bomb, for LaStella at Iowa. Pierce Johnson very bad -- 2IP, 5ER. Pitching prospects not looking so hot -- Underwood has been awful.

    Did Jiminez get hurt? I noticed he came out early yesterday.

    billybucks 17 hours 16 min ago view