Cubs Rumor Round-Up: Zambrano, Chapman, Capps

- The Yankees called the Cubs about Carlos Zambrano according to NY's finest and most respectable newspaper, the NY Post. The article says the Cubs' asking price was high...too high for the Yankees apparently. Bruce Levine says there's nothing to it and adds that Z has been living in Chicago this offseason and seems to dedicated to getting in shape.

- The Cubs are "exploring" a deal with Cuban lefty Aroldis Chapman says Phil Rogers. So far the Red Sox have offered 5/15.5M and the Marlins 5/13M. At 21 years old and capable of throwing a 100mph, even with sketchy control, I would think the Cubs could offer something in the 6/21.5M range and at worse end up with a really good reliever. Let's see how serious the Ricketts are about shoring up the farm system and boosting the young talent inventory of the team.

- The Cubs seem to be one of the finalists for the services of Matt Capps. Apparently him, Tom Gorzelanny and John Grabow were all pretty good friends or at least their wives were and she could be suggesting that Chicago might be the best fit for him and her shopping habits. Wittenmyer's article suggests that it's between the Nationals and the Cubs with the Nationals offering a closing job and the Cubs possibly offering a multi-year deal.

- Wittenmyer says the Cubs are actually getting $5.5M from the Mariners this season as part of the Silva for Bradley swap, opposed to the $3M per year we read about earlier. The second installment of $3.5M would presumably come next season.

- The center field candidates at his point seem to be Marlon Byrd, Scott Podsednik, Rick Ankiel and possibly Brett Gardner or Melky Cabrera via the trade route.


subtitle: Why 2010 for the Cubs could get ugly.

The problem with Zambrano is that many Cubs fans consider him an ace. Unfortunately, I think most other teams consider him a #2 or even #3 starter. I don't know what the Cubs could get for him, but my guess is that if the Cubs got what he is really worth, most fans would be disappointed/upset.

He's worth 3 prospects at slightly less than what Toronto got for Halladay...maybe closer to what Phils got for Lee or Indians did for Lee

The Cubs should have no reason to move them unless they get more than what he's worth though.

I get sick every time I hear that we are entertaining Scott Podsednik or Rick Ankiel. Sloppy seconds from the White Sox and Cardinlas makes me nauseous.

Also, Big Z is a #1 starter, a #3 starter, and a DH all in one. We just need a good psychologist to figure out how to suppress the #3 and DH feelings that he has.

I hear ya...but Jim Edmonds did Ok during his brief tenure with the North Siders. To me I would rather take the cheapest CF available from the junk heap of Marlon Byrd, Scott Podsednik (although he is not a CF), Rick Ankiel ...etc. I have no problem signing Reed Johnson and Rick Ankiel if they come cheap to give us a righty/lefty combo that can actually play defense. I don't see too many options!

As a Seattle resident, I get sick every time I think about the Cubs now even remotely thinking about trotting Silva out every 5th day. Even long-relief makes me throw up in my mouth a little.

Silva isn't worthy of a ML roster, in my opinion.

Since I've moved here, it's been easy not to become a Mariners fan. This year it might be tough.

Interleague sure will be fun next year, though.

I plan to visit for at least 2 games, any recommendations?

As far as which games or for siteseeing?

Siteseeing, getting around, part of town in which to stay, etc.

I found this neighborhood map. If you're going to sitesee, you'll probably only want to go as north as the University District, which is where U of Washington is, but you might not even one to got that far. It's good for shopping, bars, imo, though. Capital Hill is another area that might be nice for restaurants and shopping.

Most stuff is in the Downtown area. Safeco Field, right next to Qwest is in the southern most area and you won't want to go any further south than that.

Pike Place Market is there and is famous, for some reason, for the fish tossing. My dad loves it, I wasn't so impressed. I think there's also the restaurant from Sleepless in Seattle here, but I forget.

There's also the Seattle Center where the Space Needle is. You can take a monorail from downtown right to this area. It's a nice area with a fair, shops, food court, fountain, etc. It's also where Key Arena is. Don't pay to go up into the Needle, though. It's expensive and doesn't offer much a view, imo. If you go into the gift shop, don't buy anything from Lantern Press as that is the company that just layed me off.

Chinatown is near Safeco, which I like, but it's pretty weak when compared to SF, NY, Vancouver. Plus their bootleg dvd's are too expensive. Good food, though. Seattle is great for Asian food, especially Dim Sum, Thai, Sushi, Pho.

I'm not sure where the best places to stay are, but if you stay in one of the above neighborhoods, you'll be near the action. I live in the northernmost park, Lake City, which is where the hobos, liquor stores, and strip clubs are.

Other things to try: the sculpure park, Seattle Art Museum.

[edit] To get around, you'll need to use the buses. Most of the drivers are helpful if you have questions about how to get around. You can buy a daypass which is probably your best bet. You can plan trips here:

If you're a music fan the Experience Music Project is awesome. Get a set of headphones and you're set for a good 4 hours.

Thanks guys.

Would suggest staying either in downtown, Belltown, or Queen Anne. Really depends on your price range though.

Nightlife/food/non-shopping: Belltown, Cap Hill, Ballard, maybe Fremont. Would recommend against U Dist.

Downtown isnt great for nightlife or dining, but it is solid for shopping if you're into that. Otherwise, I'd suggest the other neighborhoods listed, especially Cap Hill and Ballard.

Get around via bus or cab. Cabs arent cheap, but will be more direct. You could rent a car too. Get a GPS.

What are you looking for? Seattle literally has everything. Drop me an email if you need some advice.

i view the Silva issue differently. I like the move. I'm not expecting jack squat from Silva. But at least we won't have Bradley anymore. That guy couldn't even regularly go out on the field to stink it up. I was hopeful last winter when we got him but those hopes were pretty quickly dashed when he started not playing. I think too many people underestimate what an effect a disgruntled person can have on the rest of the players. One bad apple can really influence the whole lot. I don't know any details of his club house behavior but one thing is pretty clear. The Cubs players didn't really enjoy trotting out onto the field everyday. Whereas 2008 it seemed like they were ready everyday for a fight. (until they coasted into the playoffs and forgot there were more games to play)

Anyway, maybe Silva can actually turn things around as a Cub. You never know. I thought Dempster was a lost cause and he turned out ok. But like I said earlier, if he sucks then we can kick him to the curb. At least he isn't a crucial part of our offense.

one less bad attitude with hitting/fielding upside for one useless pitcher with no upside. meh.

dumpster had tools to work with at least...silva...literally...has a 88-91mph sinking fastball and a 78-82mph changeup...and control...that's about it. he's got a crappy slider he never uses unless he's way in front of the count.

"The Cubs players didn't really enjoy trotting out onto the field everyday. Whereas 2008 it seemed like they were ready everyday for a fight."

Oh, I didn't realize this was part of MB's responsibilities. Thought it was Lou's...

But why not blame him for Sorry Sori dogging it in left? Soto reporting overweight and high? D Lee thinking about home instead of home plate? Z pinch hitting and getting hurt? Gregg tossing straight fastballs, Miles poor year, no 2nd baseman, hitting coach firings??? This trade SHOULD turn EVERYTHING around, in other words?

What about second base...calling Jim Hendry - Orlando Hudson is available assuming you don't do something crazy and bring in DeRo for a second tour of duty now that you admitted to screwing up the situation last year.

Interesting look in the rear view mirror (wide-view version) from the Mariners beat writer at the Carlos Silva era...

"Where Silva lost the Seattle fanbase, though, came off the field during that dismal 2008 season. After a pair of losses at Yankee Stadium in May and at Safeco Field in August, he decried the inability of the Mariners to police themselves within the clubhouse. He complained that, unlike his past Twins teams, who knew what the post-season was about, some Mariners were more about personal stats than winning and had no idea how to be accountable to themselves and their teammates."

oh...the irony.

he may be a waste of space, but at least he doesn't hurt water coolers.

"It's nice to advocate dealing with stuff internally, as former manager Jim Riggleman, outfielder Raul Ibanez and others suggested.

But from what we know now, that internal policing just wasn't taking place. At best, Riggleman and company were putting band aids on gaping wounds and praying the season would end. Theories are great, but at some point they have to be put into practice.

Nobody did that in the Seattle clubhouse. And now, a year-plus later, just about everybody from that team is gone, including coaches, management and players. Judging by how the team has done since, those were the right moves to make."

really? hmmm....

I don't think Chapman is likely to sign any six year contracts, at least for that little money. Not that he's got real agents, they realize what he could make in his 5th and 6th years (even if that's just the first and second years of arbitration).

I'd expect the starting point is four years and $20 million, and if you want a year that's going to buy him out of arbitration, then it will cost a lot.

When Lincecum gets his contract next year, heads are going to be spinning, and the Hendrix Bros are going to try and argue one year of arbitration on Chapman can be worth $10 to $15 million.

To get the money for Chapman, the Hendry could scale back the overslotting they've been doing the last few years. He cleverly manipulated free agency to make sure that he didn't get any extra picks, and though he hasn't signed away any draft picks, there's still time.

Imagine all the fun that Chapman, Marmol and Zambrano can have showing each other their nasty pitches they can't throw for strikes.

I see your point about 6 years, although if you're a pitcher, you should probably take all the security you can get.

maybe Boston will change their offer or Yanks will do what the Yanks do, but at the moment 5 yrs and $3m per is the guideline so I was going off of that. We'll see what it ends up...

I agree that this is really all about addition by subtraction - anything that gets you some money back while getting rid of the all - time head case that is Bradley is still a plus. Now, if we could just get something for Fonzie...

Scott Posednik = Sam Fuld

Sam Fuld can play CF.

For a week until he hurts himself.

This is really not directed entirely to you, Crunch, but when can we stop lamenting what a productive hitter the Cubs are giving away in Bradley. The last thing this is about is what a f'n amazing hitter MB is. He's a world-class pud-whacker who will be joining his 8th MLB organization in 10 years, and that's the f'n story. Nobody with eyes for baseball talent ever questioned whether he could play the game, but it's the galactically immense chip on his freakin' shoulder he brings to the park every day that has always been the 'problem'.

It's not the manager's job to undo what Milton and his personal history has created in his head for the first 25+ years of his life. Lou and others wrote his name on the lineup card as often as they could (averages 96 games played/year over his career). He wants to continue to bring his inner demons to the clubhouse everyday instead of getting the professional counseling he needs. Most baseball managers don't have degrees in clinical psychology, so I don't know who is really going to 'get to' Milton and give him the 'understanding' he needs.

Grow up, Milton, and/or get the help you need to be a productive member of society much less part of a professional baseball organization - or don't. I don't really give a crap. But he's exactly the profile of the guy in 5-10 years who we'll read about who killed his wife and then swallowed his 9mm.

This was easily the worst signing and move of Hendry's tenure as a GM here - and that's saying something with all the examples to choose from. Manny couldn't be more correct about Hendry.

You didn't even mention his boombox.

George said: "Most baseball managers don't have degrees in clinical psychology, so I don't know who is really going to 'get to' Milton and give him the 'understanding' he needs."

artskoe sez: Billy Martin, George. Lou is no Billy Martin. There were 25 (or more?) malcontents in that Yankee dugout who wouldn't talk to each other outside of the ballpark and probably still don't have reunions - but they have rings.

Ryno is showing signs of becoming a Billy Martin, maybe? I'd take a 3 hour trip to Round Rock (near Austin) to see him manage. Won't go 20 miles to Arlington to see SantaLou fall asleep walking to the mound to take Silva out of the game in the 2nd inning.

Good point on the Yankees of the Bronx Zoo era..except they were good baseball players too. MB stunk it up last season.

It's funny how you can put up with those malcontents as long as they are performing at a high level. Sparky Lyle, Mickey Rivers, Ed name a few, were sure sent packing ASAP if they were felt to be slipping.

Lou won a ring with the Reds. If memory serves (and it may not), Martin won one ring with the Yankees.

Billy Martin managed for 16 years and compiled a 1253-1013 (.553) record. His teams won two league pennants and one World Series title.

Lou Piniella has a 1784-1639 (.521) record in 22 seasons. His teams have won one league pennant and one World Series.

I think it’s fair to say that Billy Martin did not hold his Yankees teams together. He fought constantly with several of the players. He didn’t coddle anyone. No one got special treatment. Although we’ll never know, I think Billy Martin would have ripped Milton Bradley’s head off. Martin was not one to tolerate the weak.

"This is really not directed entirely to you, Crunch, but when can we stop lamenting what a productive hitter the Cubs are giving away in Bradley."

bradley = can hit and field

silva = nothing

yes, it's hendry's worst move, but why should i be happy a good hitter is gone because the 3-4m a year manager can't make his clubhouse work. silva is trash. there's no "wait and see" with his stuff. if you want a manager to just fill out a lineup card you can get that for 1/2 million bucks and spend the savings on keeping derosa or wuertz...or whatever.

bradley may not be a lot of fun, but there's 23 other guys and support staff to chat with if you're bored. bradley wasn't out there setting anyone's locker on fire even if his respect level by his peers was low in the cub locker room. babying his baby ass might have kept us from getting to this point of giving away a guy with upside for a guy with nothing and pretending "saving 6 million bucks" is actually saving anything.

I know Bradley can play baseball. I know Silva is for shit. I just said that above. The point is that Bradley is an emotional lost cause. It isn't how much Pinella makes; not one of the last 7 organizations have gotten through to MB. Texas tolerated him in 2008, weren't about to give him a multi-year contract, and were happy to take him back for 2010 if the Cubs picked up about all of his remaining guaranteed salary.

My God, don't you get that Bradley looks good until he spends a couple of months in your clubhouse and then every team he's been with wants to get rid of his ass. That isn't my opinion - that's Bradley's factual history. Hendry fell into the same false trap as all the organizations MB played with before the Cubs, and Seattle will be the next to make sure the door doesn't hit him in the ass in the very near future.

This has nothing to do with how good a baseball player Bradley is and how much Silva sucks. This is about how our favorite team's GM was a monumental dumb-ass to sign Bradley at all, let alone for 3 years, $30M guaranteed. He spent valuable payroll on the wrong player when better alternatives (Ibanez, Dunn) were available for less money and less years. Then trying to clean up the pile of crap he created, Hendry handcuffs the 2010 roster with a crap player in return and not enough payroll flexibility to fix the mess he created in 2009. That's the point.

I hope to God this is what finally causes Hendry to lose his job, and I wish I had confidence that Ricketts will put a lot better baseball people in top management roles after he's gone. You know, people like who run BOS, LAA, PHL, ATL, and STL - teams that seem to be in the World Series a lot more often than the rest of the league.

George sed: I hope to God this is what finally causes Hendry to lose his job, and I wish I had confidence that Ricketts will put a lot better baseball people in top management roles after he's gone. You know, people like who run BOS, LAA, PHL, ATL, and STL - teams that seem to be in the World Series a lot more often than the rest of the league.

artskoe reply: George, above all this is our hope: More than changing out Hendry, changing ownership is the way this team had to go. Tribune had too many corporate unwritten rules to allow any GM here to slice and dice to come up with a good recipe. It has been frustrating for decades to see Braves, Cards, Marlins, Tigers, etc, make lineup changes and come up with new guys who could impact the game and managers who knew how to get the best out of them. Hendry and Lou will now come face-to-face with ONE man to give account. They only thought they had ulcers before!

The Trib let the stadium fall apart, the farm system and last year, the team. Let's hope this team, now with a family crest at stake, begins a new era - like a Frank Kapra movie. If the Trib was the last paper in the nation, I wouldn't spend a dime (or 25 cents on Sunday) to see what's printed in it.

Let's hope Hendry surprises us. Lou needs to be hooked up to life support. As for TR, the Honeymoon begins...

Lou as manager of Cubs: 265-219
Dusty 322-326
Baylor 187-220
Riggleman 374-419

Lou needs to perform better as manager this year, but let's have a little perspective here.

at least 120-140 million worth of perspective.

Exactly Crunch.

Tough to blame the Trib when they are giving $130+ million payrolls to their GM and Manager. was Piniella's mismanagement that caused injuries to Soriano, Ramirez, Soto, Zambrano, Dempster...and caused MB to perform like Kevin Roberson.

It's more frustrating to see a team that is in a big market, that can't "blow it up" and start from scratch, and has to rebuild on the fly, but whose fans will then complain about not having any homegrown players.

Trib....Lou....meh. The players need to get healthy and play. it spring training yet?

You know, people like who run BOS, LAA, PHL, ATL, and STL - teams that seem to be in the World Series a lot more often than the rest of the league.

The Angels don't belong on that list--- only one trip to the World Series.

Have we hit the agree to disagree cutoff point yet?

I'd be perfectly happy to start whining again about Matt Murton not getting enough playing time and trading for Juan Pierre if we're up for prolonged debates on moot points.

Bradley did neither last season crunch. His range was slightly below average, and he wasn't exactly scaring anyone with his throwing.

Silva is a nothing, but it's not like we replaced Babe Ruth out there.

Submitted by The Real Neal on Mon, 12/21/2009 - 4:18pm.
I don't think Chapman is likely to sign any six year contracts, at least for that little money. Not that he's got real agents, they realize what he could make in his 5th and 6th years (even if that's just the first and second years of arbitration).

I'd expect the starting point is four years and $20 million, and if you want a year that's going to buy him out of arbitration, then it will cost a lot.


REAL NEAL: If the Cubs (or any club) sign Ardolis Chapman to a minor league contract (no matter the bonus), he would be under club control for at least seven seasons (or more if he's added to a 40-man roster somewhere along the way), just like any other player.

But because of demand, Chapman will probably want (and get) a major league contract (and an immediate slot on an MLB 40-man roster), just as happened with Jeff Samardzija a couple of years ago. And what Samardzija got (MLB contract - 5 yrs/$10M) is probably similar in structure to what Chapman will ultimately get, although Chapman will probably want about 50% more money.

If Chapman does sign a Shark-like deal, he would get four minor league options instead of three, would probably get "no trade" rights, and would probably have a player option to opt out of the deal (but NOT the option to become a FA) once he's eligible for salary arbitration in a few years.

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  • I was right here. I don't require my GM's to be perfect, but I would like them to understand what wins baseball games (IMO controlling the strike zone and creating/avoiding outs), and knowing where the organization is in the success cycle.

    Theo and company have made and will make plenty of mistakes, but they seem to understand those two items pretty well.

    Rob Richardson 2 min 24 sec ago view
  • Now we're all Theo-believers, where were you when he signed Edwin Jackson? Or how about trading away DJ Lemehaiu? And not signing Samardzija to an extension? Or not pursuing Prince Fielder or Albert Pujols? Or signing Lester? Or trading away Cashner, Dempster, Feldman, etc?...I think I'm losing the narrative here.

    So his deal runs through 2021? Which pretty much coincides when all these guys are due to hit free agency.

    Rob G. 12 min 32 sec ago view
  • Great news.

    "Terms of the deal were not disclosed."

    Rob Richardson 39 min 13 sec ago view
  • Theo inks five year extension

    PC tonite at PNC

    jacos 1 hour 1 min ago view
  • Not as a major factor, but could be a tie-breaker. But, yeah, on performance and experience, it's Coghlan.

    billybucks 1 hour 48 min ago view
  • Arrieta’s 2.85 ERA would be good enough to lead 26 other teams. He's 3rd on #Cubs behind Hendricks (1.99) and Lester (2.28)

    Rob G. 1 hour 55 min ago view
  • jacos 2 hours 53 min ago view
  • For sure! Russell and Baez are the first infielders in a while to make me think of star defensive players in football or basketball--it's almost like they force turnovers, and they definitely play the field with a degree of athletic aggression I'd expect from a linebacker.

    [Edit: Was meant to be a response to JB above.]

    Charlie 3 hours 59 min ago view
  • tebow hit a HR in the 1st pitch he sees in instructs..lulz.

    crunch 4 hours 6 min ago view
  • I don't think his issue(s) will have anything to do with it. He hasn't hit since he's been back. Coghlan has the hot hand.

    Tito 6 hours 30 min ago view
  • I'm not a denier but definitely a skeptic on Strop and Grimm, who struggle with fastball control. Strop doesn't go near the ninth inning, and note how Grimm couldn't close the deal even with a 5-run lead. So Felix Pena comes in and gets the 3-pitch game-ending strikeout like it was nothing.

    And how about Almora missing that very catchable ball? That was unexpected after all the hype about his glove.

    When Trea Turner misses balls like that--which he does--I draw conclusions from it. It seems to be the one chink in his armor. But I'll give Almora another chance.

    VirginiaPhil 6 hours 34 min ago view
  • Assuming Soler is good to go, I think it comes down to 3 of the following 4: Coghlan, TLS, Sczcur, Almora. Of the 4, TLS seems to be the hardest to justify, particularly given his behavioral issues.

    billybucks 6 hours 40 min ago view
  • I'm wondering if both Coghlan and LaStella make it. With Javy being able to play all the infield spots and Joe maybe wanting late-inning D when Soler plays (assuming he plays), hence either Szczur or Almora, I think LaStella might be the odd guy out.

    Tito 6 hours 43 min ago view
  • Hendricks needs the win, anyway, plus a couple more.

    My hunch is that Hendricks wins the Cy Young . . . for Lester. That is, without Hendricks tipping the scale toward the Cubs, Scherzer tops Lester.

    VirginiaPhil 6 hours 56 min ago view
  • Old Cub fans remember when Ken Hubbs died at 22 in the crash of a small plane he was piloting in a storm in Utah in 1964. But Hubbs was not an elite power pitcher like Score and Fernandez. Score lived a long time after the accident but it was (effectively) career-ending.

    VirginiaPhil 6 hours 59 min ago view
  • HAGSAG: Since I've only seen them throw in one game and in one "live" BP session, all I can do is provide initial first impressions.

    Brailyn Marquez is listed at 6'4 but is probably more like 6'5 or 6'6. I would describe him as a younger version of Bryan Hudson, throwing a ton of ground balls but not getting a lot of swings & misses (yet). Because of his size he could eventually grow into more velocity, but right now he's mostly a pitch-to-contact guy. He generally throws strikes.

    Arizona Phil 7 hours 5 min ago view